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Posted 06 Aug 2023 by Joe Duggan


Re-live the romance and share the suspense of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet in this ex-citing new piece of digital theatre.

The British Council, the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities, is partnering with leading arts charity the National Youth Theatre of Great Brit-ain to bring you one of the most popular of Shakespeare’s plays re-told through the lens of Instagram.

Experience the emotionally-charged tale of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet abridged by Owen Horsley, directed by Kate Hewitt and performed by the charity’s 2016 NYT REP Company, which offers a free practical alternative to formal training. Follow the course of love as acted out on stage and online. Through a series of unique Instagram posts, #ShakespeareNoFilter lets you re-connect with Shakespeare and rediscover the UK's great-est cultural icon!

How can Juliet decide who is the right gentleman? How will Romeo cope with “love’s heavy burden”? With #ShakespeareNoFilter you can join in with the story from your phone, tablet or laptop as well as catch up with all of the posts from #ShakespeareNoFilter on a dedicated section of the global Shakespeare Lives website at www.shakespearelives.org

Paul Roseby, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the National Youth Theatre, said:
“We’re particularly pleased to be partnering with the British Council on #ShakespeareNoFilter this year to bring Shakespeare to young people all over Europe and prove that creativity has no boundaries. I hope that watching our brave young talent telling this timeless story will in-spire young people across Europe to engage with theatre and forge new friendships for the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain."

#ShakespeareNoFilter is all about connecting with Europe past and present through the magic of Shakespeare . Using Instagram will introduce Shakespeare’s work to a whole new generation of young people across Europe who like to travel, to find out about other countries and cultures, and who will be inspired to find out more about the man whose writing remains popular four centuries on.

National Youth Theatre member Charlotte Law who plays the Apothecary in the production said: “Being part of this production and the National Youth Theatre is best thing I’ve ever done. It has shaped my life for the better, taught me loads of acting skills and given me the chance to make lifelong friends. It’s also introduced me to amazing opportunities like this one with the British Council and I’d encourage all young people from the UK and beyond to get involved.”

Rebecca Walton, Regional Director Europe at the British Council, said: “William Shakespeare is the ultimate storyteller. Our #ShakespeareNoFilter digital campaign gives the Instagram Generation a unique opportunity to connect with the genius of Shakespeare, in a way which is fresh and fun. We’re working with a really talented group of young people who are able to present a fresh and exciting approach to these classic tales. This is one of the many activities taking place across Europe to celebrate the works of Shakespeare – and a powerful example of how we are continuing to engage people through culture ”

William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet abridged by Owen Horsley

Performed by the 2016 National Youth Theatre REP Company at Ambassadors Theatre.

Director – Kate Hewitt
Designer – Cecilia Carey
Movement Director – Polly Bennett
Music and Sound Design –
Dom James and Tommy Antonio
Lighting Designer – Elliot Griggs
Assistant Director – Sean Hollands
Production Manager – Jacqui George
Assistant Production Manager –
Beth Marston
Technical Manager – Jackson Ingle
Fight Directors – Rachel Bown-Williams and Ruth Cooper-Brown of Rc-ANNIE Ltd
Company Stage Manager – Linsey Hall
Sound Operator – Daffyd Gough
Lighting Operator – Gareth Weaver
Head of Costume – Helena Bonner
Deputy Head of Costume – Ugne Dainiute
Costume Assistant – Isabelle Homer
Voice Tutor – Emily Jenkins

Romeo – James Mace
Juliet – Shalisha James-Davis
Lady Capulet – Natasha Heliotis
Capulet – Felix Mackenzie-Barrow
Nurse – Arianna Beadie
Friar Laurence – Joshua Lyster-Downer
Lady Montague – Catrin Walker-Booth
Mercutio / Montague – Kwami Odoom
Prince – Michael Kinsey
Benvolio – Shiv Jalota
Paris – Nathaniel Wade
Sampson / Peter – Joe Pierson
Abraham / Apothecary – Charlotte Law
Balthasar – Daisy Fairclough
Tybalt – Seraphina Beh
Gregory – Chinenye Ezeudu