A theatre company formed by Coventry University performing arts graduates has been selected to take part in this year’s National Student Drama Festival (NSDF).
Strongbox Theatre – which was started up by former theatre and professional practice students Joshua Patel, Cassey North and Laura Whitehouse – was one of only 11 companies from a total of 80 entrants chosen to perform at the prestigious festival which takes place from 23 to 29 March in Scarborough.
The National Student Drama Festival, sponsored by The Sunday Times, was founded in 1956 and presents outstanding productions made by young and up and coming theatre makers. Each year the NSDF team sees up to 100 student acts from all across the UK, selecting the most exceptional for its annual showcase in North Yorkshire.
The shows form part of the festival, which also includes workshops, training sessions and discussion groups, and are watched by over eight hundred students who come from all over the country to be part of what is a major event in the theatrical calendar.
Strongbox impressed the NSDF team with their presentation of the classic Brothers Grimm tale, The Twelve Dancing Princesses. Drawing on Jeanette Winterson’s modern take on the Grimm’s work, Sexing the Cherry, this playful depiction of the story sees twelve sisters torn apart and forced to marry twelve princes, before rebelling against their demons in an attempt to reunite and live as they once did.
Strongbox debuted the play last year in the Shop Front Theatre as part of the annual degree show at Coventry University and it was so well received the company restaged it on the University’s city centre campus in January this year. The play, which features seven current Coventry University performing arts students, will now receive a further airing at the festival in Scarborough later this month.
The University is keen to support students and graduates with valuable career enhancing opportunities and is assisting Strongbox in its efforts to raise funds to take part in the festival.