Posted 31st May 2020
Bolsover Drama Group’s youth members have been involved in group productions since the group’s first musical, ‘The King and I’ in 1992, and as a result the group founded a youth section in 1996, originally catering for the group’s members aged between 8 and 16.
The first production performed was the musical ‘Big Al’ at the Moorfield Hall Theatre at Bolsover School in November 1997 following well-received performances of a short section of the show at the group’s Annual Dinner and Dance and at the Pomegranate Theatre in Chesterfield.
The production was subsequently taken “on tour” to Mansfield Palace Theatre in 1998, with profits from the event donated to The Weston Spirit, the charity founded by Falklands War veteran Simon Weston. The same year, the show was also performed at the Buxton International Musical Festival, where it won the best chorus award.
The Youth Section have since performed numerous other productions, usually one musical a year, including ‘Half a Sixpence’, ‘Bugsy Malone’, ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and ‘High School Musical’, and in 2009 the Youth Section performed their first individual pantomime – ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’.
Other short productions, such as 2008’s ‘Shake Ripple and Roll’ and 2012’s ‘A Christmas Carol’ allowed youth members to gain experience of directing, producing and choreographing their own shows.
In 2007 the youth section were awarded a most prestigious award from DEFRA to educate residents of Bolsover and the surrounding area about the causes and effects of climate change, which resulted in members writing, filming and acting in their own informative DVD which was delivered to houses in the Bolsover area. More details can be found in the climate change section of this website.
In 2011 the youth section were also awarded a grant from the BBC Performing Arts Fund as part of their Young People’s Musical Theatre Scheme to provide coaching and training for their production of ‘West Side Story’ and to promote musical theatre within the local community.