Teachers and pupils prepare to perform at Wimbledon’s Polka Theatre



The collaboration between schools and playwrights has run since 2005.

By SWLondoner staff

Teachers and pupils from across South West London will take to the stage at Wimbledon’s Polka Theatre next month to bring some of the country’s leading playwrights to life.

Since 2005, the theatre has run the successful Playhouse project – a unique learning opportunity that gives schools the chance to work directly with some of Britain’s top playwrights.

This year, the theatre has recruited six teachers from Bond Primary, Hillcross Primary, Merton Park Primary (Merton), Chesterton (Wandsworth), Vauxhall Primary (Lambeth) and Rotherhithe Primary (Southwark).

Alongside the York Theatre Royal and Theatre Royal Plymouth, practioners from the Polka Theatre joined teachers and the writers for a week long retreat in February where they honed their directing skills.

The schools were then visited by the practitioners who assisted the teachers with practical and technical aspects of their production.

Teacher Debs Hastings of Merton Park Primary School said taking part in the project had been a great experience.

“This is my first year as a teacher involved in the Playhouse project,” she said.

“I was introduced to the most amazing plays and some really great professionals. My children were just as passionate about the script when we got back to school and now we have auditioned and are all looking forward to starting rehearsals and really getting into role.”

The Playhouse Festival takes place in Polka’s Main Theatre from July 10 – 12.

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