Take a Child to the Theatre Today

March 14, 2012

20 March 2012

Every year ASSITEJ centres across all continents celebrate the World Day of Theatre for Children and Young People on 20th March. For the next three years, the global association will be uniting theatres across the world in conveying one message: TAKE A CHILD TO THE THEATRE TODAY.

The main purpose of the World Day is to attract the attention of a wider public to the art of theatre for children and young people. The TAKE A CHILD TO THEATRE TODAY campaign aims to engage with the theatre community, government departments, the private sector, and the general public to advocate for the value of theatre in the lives of children and young people. The TAKE A CHILD TO THEATRE TODAY campaign goes to the heart of what ASSITEJ is all about, working to ensure that all children and young people have access to the arts.

Events during the World Day may be special performances, open rehearsals, lectures, exhibitions, articles in newspapers and magazines etc. Events are primarily organised by national ASSITEJ centres or by theatre companies or theatre organisations.

TYA (Theatre for Young Audiences) Ireland, the ASSITEJ Centre here, will use this year’s World Day to launch the campaign TAKE A CHILD TO THEATRE TODAY which will run throughout the year and see companies and venues promote professional theatre experiences for all young citizens in Ireland. “Unless children are given the opportunity to fall in love with the theatre experience, we will have no theatre industry in the future,” Yvette Hardie, President of ASSITEJ.

On the day members are encouraged to create events to celebrate theatre for young audiences throughout the country: Graffiti Theatre Company in Cork will present 2 performances of Walking Man by Jody O’Neill in its theatre in Blackpool / Púca Puppets will be celebrating World Day of Theatre for Children on the 22nd of March with a special performance of Tic Teac for the Rutland Street Preschool / Barnstorm is on national tour with A Murder of Crows by Mike Kenny in theatres throughout the country (they will be in Glór in Ennis on 20th March). We would also encourage theatres, arts centres and cultural institutions to open their doors to young citizens on the day and encourage participation in our cultural heritage (for some a first step!).

Each year a significant world leader/artist in theatre for young people is asked to write the message for the ASSITEJ World Day. This year, it is Suzanne Lebeau, celebrated and multiple award-winning French-Canadian playwright who is the author of over 20 plays (translated into 13 languages) and co-founder of Montreal's Le Carrousel Theatre Company. Supported by creative research that breaks through limits and boundaries, artistic directors Suzanne Lebeau and Gervais Gaudreault have used their passion to form a repertoire of original works that are considered to be milestones in the history of theatre for young audiences. Her significant contribution to children's theatre has earned her numerous awards and honours in Canada and abroad, including being named a Knight of the Ordre de la Pléiade.

ASSITEJ International is a world network of Theatre for Children and Young People. It was created to facilitate the development of this vibrant sector to the highest artistic level. The World Day happens every year on 20th March and is a celebration of the diversity of our work in this field.'
Further information: Philip Hardy, TYA Ireland (Chair), Tel: 056-7751266 / e: philip@tya-ireland.org

Draiocht has a number of events programmed for Families and Schools during March to June, including Free Family Art Days, shows for families 'Under a Different Light' from Italy, 'Walking Man' from Graffiti, 'Kindur' from Italy and many more events. Find out more at these links or email sarah@draiocht.ie :

For a list of Draiocht's Family Events go here
For School and Youth Arts Events go here


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