Youth Theatre Arts Scotland – a new name and patron for Promote YT

The national development organisation for youth theatre arts in Scotland is changing its name: from Promote YT to Youth Theatre Arts Scotland from today.

The new name and visual identity reflects the growth in scale and diversity of Scotland’s youth theatre sector over the past 10 years.

Acting CEO Helen Bain said:-“Our new name (Youth Theatre Arts Scotland) will allow us to better represent Scotland’s youth theatre sector, and to communicate clearly what we do: showcase talent, nurture potential and develop professional
expertise. Our vibrant sector not only plays a vital part in producing Scotland’s artists and audiences of tomorrow, but also gives our young people an accessible form of social, creative and cultural development.”

Findings from a recent review of youth theatre in Scotland (conducted by Youth Theatre Arts Scotland) showed that participation in youth theatre is growing. Youth theatre organisations delivered cultural activity to more than 23,000 young people per week in 2012/13 – up by a third on the previous year. Organisations that responded to the study turned over £3.5m per year, with an average of six young people per youth theatre moving onto further education in the creative industries.

Sam HeughanYouth Theatre Arts Scotland can also announce that Scottish Actor Sam Heughan has joined the company as Patron.  Born in Dumfries and Galloway, and a graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Heughan has recently been cast in US cable network drama series Outlander. Filming began last month in Cumbernauld. The series has already been hailed as Scotland’s answer to Game of Thrones, which provided a huge boost to Northern Ireland’s film and TV industry.

Sam Heughan said:-“Going to a youth theatre was a crucial first step at the start of my career. It was a safe, welcoming environment where I met like-minded students and inspiring leaders. It introduced me to the skills needed (which I still use today) and I worked alongside professionals. Youth theatre organisations are a fundamental part of helping young people become successful in the acting industry.”

Youth Theatre Arts Scotland provides youth theatre organisations and freelance practitioners with opportunities that develop professional expertise, showcase talent and strengthen sector alliances.  Their membership scheme represents over 100 youth theatre organisations and freelance practitioners across Scotland. The organisation currently receives project funding from Creative Scotland.