Latest News


Latest News

Aged between 9 and 16? NYC – Northcott Young Company – now taking bookings for the summer term!

Simply ring the Box office on 01392 726363 for more information and to register for a place… or contact Lisa on education@exeternorthcott.co.uk  

In the Willows

Aged 17-25? Love hip hop? Like free stuff?

Metta Theatre are looking for a chorus of dancers to join the professional cast when their brand new hip hop musical In the Willows comes to Exeter in February 2019.

Why not come to a free workshop to find out more?

Where? Exeter College CCI

When? Thursday October 4th 2018 at 6pm

With everything from House to Waacking – join us for some fast paced fun and great vibes in this FREE 90 minute hip-hop dance class.

Learn routines from Metta’s hip-hop musical In The Willows, choreographed by Kendra J Horsburgh (Bird Gang, Zoo Nation, Boudicca). Led by one of the country’s leading hip hop dance teachers Sheila Attah (Bird Gang) this is a dance class for everyone – beginners welcome.

Registration now open at: https://www.mettatheatre.co.uk/workshops/

Young Company: Saturday youth theatre 2018

This is the chance to be part of a brand new youth theatre in Exeter.

Here at the Northcott we believe theatre gives young people a stage to reach their personal and creative potential.

Some of our youngsters have recently appeared in the Christmas pantomime alongside veterans of stage and screen.

Our most famous student, Alex Sharp, went on to perform on Broadway and win a prestigious Tony theatre award.

We already run classes during the Easter and summer holidays but now we want to provide a more regular opportunity for around 40 talented young people to make theatre together.

You will have the opportunity to work with like-minded, creative young people to make thought provoking, challenging drama.

Previous experience of acting is not required but the desire and commitment to drama is compulsory.

Where? Roborough Studios, University of Exeter Streatham Campus.

When? Saturdays from April 21st 2018:

11am – 1pm for young people aged between 9 and 12 on April 21st 2018

1.30 – 3.30pm for young people aged between 13 and 16 on April 21st 2018

Cost? £100 for a term of 10 two hour sessions.

The term will culminate in a sharing of work for friends and family.

Young Company members will have opportunities to work with Northcott staff as well as perform on the stage.

The new sessions will be delivered by Lizzie Hedden, head of drama at Dawlish Community College.

Lizzie has a wealth of experience teaching drama and directing creative projects with a range of young people.

She is also part of our team regularly auditioning young people for Northcott produced work.

To find out more, and to register for a place, please contact Lizzie at L.Hedden@exeter.ac.uk or Lisa Hudson (Education and Outreach Officer) at education@exeternorthcott.co.uk

Click here to download a flyer

Easter school 2018

Following the highly successful Easter School in 2017, we are pleased to announce that we will be running this initiative again in 2018!

Open to young people aged between 11 and 14, the week-long residency will give participants the opportunity to work together to explore a play text and devise their own piece of theatre from scratch.

Where? Roborough Studios, University of Exeter Streatham Campus, EX4 4SB.

When? Monday 9th – Friday 13th April 2018. Monday to Thursday 10am – 4pm; Friday 11am – 7pm (with a sharing of work at 6pm for friends and family).

Cost? The full week’s tuition (including an invitation for friends and family to the sharing of work) is £160 per participant.

The week’s tuition will be led by Education & Outreach Officer Lisa Hudson and supported by graduates of the University of Exeter. Lisa has extensive experience of teaching drama, leading workshops and directing young people in a range of creative projects.

Download registration form here>>>

For more information or to register your child for the course, please contact Lisa at:

Reaction to Easter School April 2017
My daughter recently attended your Easter School and had an amazing time building on her acting skills and making new friends, 2017 Parent

Year 10 Summer School

Each year at the Northcott we are inundated by requests from Year 10 students for work experience placements. As you can imagine, it is really difficult to accommodate all of these requests. We just don’t have the resources to make this happen for everybody. Because of this, we’ve come up with an alternative offer, which we ran successfully for the first time this year.

We’re pleased to say that we are able to offer 20 places on a summer school, free of charge, as an alternative programme to a traditional work experience placement. Please note that this opportunity is for students in Year 10.


Monday 30 July – Friday 3 August 2018.

Monday to Thursday 10am to 4pm, and 11am – 7pm on the Friday with a sharing of work to friends and family at 6pm.


Roborough Studios, University of Exeter campus.



How to apply?

Download an application form here…

For more information contact Lisa at education@exeternorthcott.co.uk

Praise for 2017 Summer School:

“I thoroughly enjoyed the Northcott Summer School Week. It was a great experience, and I learnt so much about how the theatre runs, both on the performing side and behind the scenes….. At the end of the week, I had an immense feeling of accomplishment and felt as if I had made a few new friends along the way.”

“Thank you very much for the week, it was fantastic and I enjoyed every bit of it.”

“Thank you for the amazing experience last week; I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of all five days. I met some wonderful and talented people who I can now call friends.”

Summer School 2017

Last year saw our first summer school exclusively for Year 10 students. Following a competitive application process, this group of talented young actors created their own piece of devised theatre and learned more about the life and work of the Northcott through Q&A sessions with staff and a technical tour.

The week culminated with a sharing of their work with friends and family. It was a real privilege to see the amazing range of talent on show and to see friendships and creative partnerships blossom.

“It was an amazing experience to meet like-minded people and spend a week exploring creative performance styles, creating a show that pushed us to work together efficiently and imaginatively. At the end of the week, I had an immense feeling of accomplishment and felt as if I had made a few new friends along the way.” (Summer school participant)

We’ve found our Dick Whittington Chorus

DW kids


We’re delighted that we have found 18 talented performers to form the young chorus in this year’s Christmas pantomime, Dick Whittington. As last year, the competition was strong and the standard incredibly high. Aged between 10 and 15, the group demonstrated that they can act, sing and dance in a series of workshops and call-back auditions. We’re excited to start rehearsing with them in September and can’t wait to see them on stage alongside the adult company in December and January.


The Railway Children_header

The Railway Children Drama Workshops

We’re delighted to be able to offer workshops to accompany E.Nesbitt’s classic tale, The Railway Children for pupils in Key Stage 3.

>> Download flyer for more information

Easter School 2017

We had a fantastic week last week with our Easter School. It was a pleasure to meet and work with such a talented group. The young people, aged between 11 and 14, worked incredibly hard to devise a piece of theatre from scratch, which they shared with friends and family at the end of the week. Supported by University of Exeter Drama students and members of PaddleBoat Theatre Company, they also enjoyed making new friends and developing their acting and devising skills.

“I enjoyed making friends with loads of people… thank you for helping us so much with the play….it was all really great.” (Easter School participant)

“Many thanks again for the great week last week, my son really enjoyed it and we thought the performance on Friday​ was fantastic. It was a valuable experience for him.” (Parent of Easter School participant).


The Twits Art and Drama Exhibition

We’ve had a fabulous time in the last few weeks working with students at Wynstream Primary, Exeter and Heathcoat Primary, Tiverton. In preparation for their visits to see The Twits this week, students have explored the story through art and drama activities. The results of their amazingly detailed art work, and photos of the drama sessions, are on display in our foyer for the duration of the show.


“I liked that we used a wide variety of skills in the drama session.” (Year 6 student)

“I loved that we could work independently in the art session.” (Year 6 student)

We extend our thanks to all the young people and their teachers for their creativity and enthusiasm. For more information about workshops, contact Lisa at education@exeternorthcott.co.uk

Othello Workshops for GCSE & A Level Students 

April/May 2017 

Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory return to the Exeter Northcott this May and we are pleased to be running a series of workshops to accompany their fabulous adaptation of Othello for GCSE and A Level students .

The practical sessions will allow students to examine character and themes as well as encouraging a close analysis of a selection of extracts from the play.

We will work with your students to consider how Shakespeare’s text is relevant to 21st century students of Drama and English, and the scope this gives for interpretation in performance and direction.

For more information please download the workshop package here.


Thank you to Isca and Wynstream!

We’d like to say a big thank you to Isca Academy and Wynstream Primary for welcoming us into their schools in the last two days.

Year 9 students at Isca used their knowledge of their exam text A Christmas Carol to explore characters and themes in a practical workshop. Year 6 pupils at Wynstream used art and drama techniques to explore Roald Dahl’s The Twits in preparation for their trip to see the show at the Northcott later this term.

Thanks to both schools for their warm welcome and for the enthusiasm and talent of their students.

What’s in Mr Twits beard?!

Easter and Summer Schools!

Come and join us for a week of Easter school (Key Stage Three students) or Summer school (Year 10s).

>Follow the link for more information.


Roald Dahl’s The Twits – Workshops for Years 4, 5 & 6

The Twits_thumb

The Exeter Northcott Theatre is excited to welcome Roald Dahl’s The Twits from 27 February – 4 March 2017. This Curve and Rose Theatre Kingston co-production, which was seen by over 6000 young people and their families at the Lyric Theatre in Hong Kong in November, tells the story of the deliciously revolting Mr and Mrs Twit as they battle with the Muggle-Wumps.
As part of our continuing commitment to developing relationships with schools and colleges, we would like to offer your school the opportunity to take part in a workshop based on Roald Dahl’s text.
The workshop…

“Mr. Twit was a twit. He was born a twit. And, now at the age of sixty, he was a bigger twit than ever.”
What’s in Mr Twit’s beard?

What would be your Muggle-Wump revenge?
What does the world look like upside down?

Take part in our Key Stage Two workshops to explore these questions and more!
We offer a two-hour practical workshop to be delivered in your school in January and February (at a date and time convenient to you) and aimed at Years 4, 5 and /or 6 students.

The session for up to 40 pupils provides opportunities to explore ideas through Drama and Art, and allows for work to be produced in both of these areas. Your students’ work will then form part of an exhibition in the foyer of the theatre for the duration of the show!

The workshop will be led by Lisa Hudson, an experienced teacher of Drama and English, and Victoria Byron, an equally experienced Art teacher and children’s illustrator.

The fee for the workshop is £250. This fee will be reduced to £200 if you make a group booking to see the show at the theatre.

We at the Northcott Theatre are very keen to develop our relationships with schools, colleges and the wider community. Please feel free to contact Education and Outreach Officer Lisa for any further information you require on education@exeternorthcott.co.uk



Peter Pan Lost Boys Learn To Fight!

In preparation for their swash-buckling adventures in our Christmas production, Peter Pan, our wonderful team of Lost Boys spent last week practising their newly-learned skills.

>>> Watch the video

Sunday’s Monster fun!


There was fun for all the family on Sunday when Monstersaurus came to the Northcott stage!

This brand new show from the creators of Aliens Love Underpants thrilled an audience of all ages as they joined young inventor Monty in his world of whacky inventions and incredible monsters. The two performances were full of thrills, spills, magic and mayhem and included original music and plenty of audience participation.

Lots of colouring and drawing activities as well as some monster-themed face painting rounded off a fabulous day.


Lost Boys’ Summer School!


We had a fantastic week last week when the Lost Boys cast of Peter Pan came together for summer school. Responding to the themes of John Godber’s play Teechers, our Lost Boys created an amazing piece of devised theatre which they shared with their family and friends at the end of the week.

Thea Mackney, who will play the roles of ‘Slightly’ and ‘Liza’ in Peter Pan, said of her week: “I really enjoyed the summer school. It was really good fun and I learnt a lot. I enjoyed meeting other actors and improvising scenes for our final performance. We had a great director and Paddleboat were brilliant. I wish I could do it every day.” Bradley Swinbank, who will play ‘Tootles’ in the Christmas show commented, “fun times making new friends and creating an awesome show.”

We’d like to thank all our amazing young actors for their enthusiasm and energy. Last week confirmed for us just how talented they are and we know that they’ll be an impressive addition to the Peter Pan company. We’d also like to thank PaddleBoat Theatre for joining us in summer school and helping us develop the work.


Meet our Michael’s and John’s!

michael and john

Following a hugely successful audition call, Exeter Northcott Theatre is proud to present the young actors who will play the roles of John and Michael Darling in its 2016 Christmas show, Peter Pan.

Along with the Lost Boys cast, the roles will split equally between two teams of actors throughout the run which starts on Friday 2 December.

Michael Darling will be played by 12 year old Brandon Tayler-Young who attends Plymouth School of Creative Arts, and 10 year old Fenn Gillmore, who attends St Sidwell’s Primary School in Exeter.

Fenn said “When I’m older I want to be an actor. I love acting on stage, so I’m looking forward to working with the cast because I’ve never done such a big production and it’s going to be quite exciting!”

Brandon added “I’m looking forward to the show because I get to fly and I get to be part of such an excellent production.”

The role of John Darling will be played by 14 year old Charlie Killen, who attends Exeter School, and 12 year old Gabriel Drake, who attends Dawlish Community College.

“I’m looking forward to being part of a great and special production at one of Exeter’s best theatres.” said Charlie.

Gabriel said “I’m looking forward to working with loads of professional actors and a professional director. I’m also really looking forward to flying – that will be a great experience!”

Goldilocks Family Fun!


Exeter Northcott Theatre was a hive of activity yesterday as Stuff and Nonsense Theatre Company brought their Goldilocks and the Three Bears to the stage. A brilliant mix of ingenious puppetry, music and mischief, the show tells the story of broken chairs, unmade beds and a mysterious visitor who takes Baby Bear on a breath-taking adventure that turns his house and his world upside down!

To accompany the two performances of this beary-tale, the younger members of the audience enjoyed tucking into Chef Paul George Bending’s bear themed picnic bags and created their own bears with drawings and colouring. Face painters also added to the fun by creating a whole host of little bears before each of the performances. Some of the youngest members of the audience even brought their own teddies to enjoy the performance alongside them.

Lisa Hudson, Education and Outreach Officer, said: “It was great to see the theatre buzzing with excitement about the show, and particularly lovely to see the younger members of our audience (and their teddies!) making the most of the bear-themed activities.”


WESC Partnership

Us and Them Devised Performance.

Exeter Northcott Theatre is thrilled to be working in partnership with WESC Foundation – The Specialist Centre for Visual Impairment. On Thursday 12 May learners at WESC performed their own piece of theatre to the whole school and college. Resulting from a six week project in conjunction with the Northcott’s Education Officer Lisa, WESC learners responded to the themes in David Campton’s play Us and Them. This involved exploring ideas of difference, of what puts barriers between people, and, importantly, how we might learn from our mistakes to reach understanding and reconciliation.

Audience response to this piece was really positive. Jill Dudding, WESC’s Head of Health and Supported Housing, commented: “Loved the simple props… an amazing performance, very thought provoking…”

Picture By Jim Wileman - Pupils at WESC rehearsing for a performance.
Picture By Jim Wileman – Learners at WESC rehearsing for their performance.


Metta Theatre’s Jungle Book workshop.

Last month, Metta Theatre Company brought their amazing adaptation of Jungle Book to the Exeter Northcott Theatre. As part of the theatre company’s outreach work, associate director Sheila Attah, who also worked to train the show’s community chorus of local young people, delivered two workshops at WESC Foundation. Sheila was supported by one of the chorus performers, University of Exeter Business student Aisha Rakhimgaliyeva.

Designed to be accessible to all WESC’s learners, the workshops introduced some of Jungle Book’s principle characters and encouraged the young people to explore the hip hop and street dance spirit of the show. Learners and staff alike had a fabulous morning:

WESC drama teacher Julian Davey said: “Sheila, by her enthusiasm, energy, moves and rhythm, stirred both students and staff alike into animal inspired movement and dance! Everyone was silly and everyone went out buzzing!”


Peter Pan – Lost Boys and Mermaids!

We are looking forward to auditioning lots of talented local young people in the coming weeks. We had so many applications for the first round of open auditions for the Lost Boys and for the parts of John and Michael that we had to add on another workshop to cater for demand! We would like to thank all those who applied and we’re looking forward to these workshops on Saturday 21st May.

We are also going to be auditioning shortly for the roles of the mermaids. Applications are invited from female performers who will be aged 17 and above on 1st September 2016. We would be interested in hearing from performers who can act and sing (singing ability, though desirable, is not essential). For more details, and to register your interest, please contact Lisa at: education@exeternorthcott.co.uk.  Auditions will be held on the afternoon of Saturday 4th June.

Coming Soon…

We wish you a very happy Easter Break. Coming after Easter, look out for Jungle Book with its amazing community chorus of local students; auditions for our young actors for our fabulous Christmas show Peter Pan; Daisi’s Drama teachers’ conference here at the University and many more opportunities for your students to get involved with life on and beyond our stage.


Pinter Workshops

West Exe Year 10 GCSE Workshop
West Exe Year 10 GCSE Workshop

We extend our thanks to the schools and colleges who welcomed us with our Pinter workshops in February and early March in which students explored extracts of Pinter’s work and examined the implications for acting and directing.

“Intriguing and engaging” (2nd Year Btec Acting student); “It was great – 10/10!” (AS Drama student).

“…many thanks to you … for an excellent workshop. It’s interesting how ‘Betrayal’ peppers our current classroom discussions as we explore a range of key themes and dramaturgy…” (IB Lecturer , Exeter College).


Nick Moran at Exeter College

We would also like to thank Nick Moran who took time out from his Betrayal performance schedule to rehearse with Exeter College Btec Acting students and to take part in a Q&A session for AS Drama students.



Betrayal Workshops


We are looking forward to visiting local schools and colleges in the next 2 weeks to deliver our Harold Pinter workshops, which accompany the Exeter Northcott Theatre’s production of Betrayal. Aimed at GCSE, BTEC and A level English and Drama students, the 2 hour workshop sessions will examine the context of Pinter’s work as well as encouraging a close analysis of a selection of texts through practical exploration. We will encourage students to begin to consider different ways of responding to Pinter’s work, including looking at different interpretations for performance and direction.

We look forward to working with students at in the Drama, English and International Baccalaureate departments at Exeter College, West Exe and Dartmouth Academy.

For more information or to book a workshop for your school or college, please contact Lisa, our Education and Outreach Officer, at education@exeternorthcott.co.uk


Local Gangsta Granny dancer chosen to join national tour!

Ellen Welch

We are really excited that local dancer Ellen Welch, who joined the cast of Birmingham Stage’s Gangsta Granny here at the Northcott earlier this month, has been chosen by the company to perform with them at more venues on their national tour. Ellen, who impressed throughout the audition process held in collaboration with Dance in Devon, will join the cast for performances in Southampton, Bournemouth, Weston Super-Mare and Swindon.

18 year old Ellen explains, “the cast and crew were absolutely lovely and made me feel very welcome from the moment I joined them and it was a really inspiring week, learning what it is like to be part of a company and there was some really great feedback from the audience.

We wish Ellen all the best for what we know will be a successful career and hope to see her back on the Exeter Northcott stage in the near future.

Gangsta Granny Workshops.

Earlier this month we were busy delivering our art and drama workshops to accompany Birmingham Stage Company’s brilliant production of Gangsta Granny. We worked with artist and children’s illustrator Vicky Byron and pupils in Years 5 and 6 to explore perceptions of people like Ben’s granny in David Walliams’s story. This work resulted some amazing drama work, and in a fabulous exhibition of art work in the foyer of the theatre, which was praised by both audience and cast.

We would like to thank St David’s Primary School; Sidmouth Primary; Wynstream Primary and St Martin’s Cranbrook, for welcoming us into their schools.


We would like to thank all the schools who welcomed us to deliver our A Christmas Carol workshops.

Nearly 3,000 students from local schools came to see the show, which amounts to nearly 20% of the overall audience, so once again a big thank you!

This term, we are excited to be delivering Gangsta Granny workshops to primary schools as well as GCSE and A Level sessions based on the Exeter Northcott’s next produced show, Harold Pinter’s Betrayal, directed by Paul Jepson and starring Simon Merrells, Nick Moran and Sarah-Jane Potts. Please see the Key Stages sections here for all details, to book shows and workshops and to download resource packs.

We are in the final stages of recruiting a community chorus of young people for Metta Theatre’s Jungle Book, and are delighted to have found a star local dancer for Birmingham Stage’s Gangsta Granny.


Local dancer joins cast of David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny

Exeter Northcott Theatre is proud to announce that local young dancer Ellen Welch has been chosen to join the cast of Birmingham Stage Company’s Gangsta Granny when it tours to Exeter in February.

From the acclaimed producers of Horrible Histories, Birmingham Stage will bring its production of David Walliams’s story to the Exeter Northcott Theatre from Tuesday 2 – Saturday 6 February. Ellen impressed throughout the audition process, which took place in partnership with Dance in Devon, and the theatre is excited that Ellen is returning to Exeter, where much of her early dance training took place.

Eighteen year old Ellen, currently attending the School of Ballet Theatre UK in Leicestershire, was originally educated in Crewkerne and at Swindon Dance. Much of her education, however, through Swindon’s Centre for Advanced Training in Dance scheme, saw Ellen training at the University of Exeter’s Drama department.

Ellen said “I’m really looking forward to performing at Exeter Northcott Theatre. I can’t wait to experience what it will be like to be in a proper, professional show.”

Gangsta Granny sees young Ben spend every Friday night with his Granny who is so boring! Or is she? What he doesn’t know is Granny has a secret and Friday nights are about to get exciting as Ben embarks on the adventure of a lifetime with his very own Gangsta Granny.

David Walliams said: “It’s the most popular of all my books and I am sure this production by the brilliant Birmingham Stage Company will delight not just children but their parents – and of course grandparents.”



A Christmas Carol Workshops

We’d like to thank Exmouth Community College, Coombeshead Academy and Queen Elizabeth’s, Crediton for welcoming us into their schools with our workshop based on Dickens’s text.

We’re looking forward to working with students at Axe Valley and Isca after half-term.

A Christmas Carol Workshop Dawlish

GCSE Workshop at Dawlish Community College.

Dawlish School

Exeter Northcott Theatre is excited to be working with local schools and colleges as part of the preparations for this year’s Christmas show, a new adaptation of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, which is being co-produced with Creative Cow.

Executive and artistic director Paul Jepson has been leading a series of workshops based on Dickens’s text, which allows pupils to consider the relevance of Dickens’s life and writing to their lives in the 21st century.

In the latest of these workshops, Paul worked with GCSE Drama students at Dawlish Community College. The two hour session explored aspects of the text, including the symbolism of Jacob Marley’s chain. The Year 10 students produced some fantastic pieces of work using physical theatre techniques.

In addition to Paul’s presence in the classroom, the session was also filmed by Televisionary production company as part of ongoing filming for a BBC documentary focusing on Paul’s work at the Exeter Northcott, which will be aired on BBC2 in November.

Feedback from staff and students at Dawlish was incredibly positive, including comments such as, “I liked the way Paul pushed us to our full potential. It made me realise you can achieve so much more if you push yourself” (Yasmin, GCSE student).