Founded in 1984, the Travelling Light Theatre Company started in Bristol with its first production ‘Down at the Dump’, serving the schools in and around Bristol. Over the years, the theatre company grew a reputation for good quality work with original ideas, capturing the hearts and imagination of all who heard it. Soon, they were in a position to conduct tours both locally and regionally, performing to audiences in places from Cornwall and Aberdeen to Romania and South Korea.
3 Core Goals
With the growth in fame and exposure, Travelling Light Company then decided to focus more on education, using their plays and stories to teach and inspire children while they are young. The company then relooked at their goals and came up with three pillars of the company which they would focus more on.
- Firstly, to create – to come up with inspirational content for performance.
- Next, to engage – to ensure that anyone and everyone is able to hear or participate in theatre.
- Thirdly, to develop- to build strong foundations for the company now to ensure stability and sustainability in the future.
Youth Theatre Groups
The company has done well in these areas, growing their work significantly in 2003 with the expansion and running of three youth theatre groups Louder than Words – a theatre group for children with additional needs, #ACTPLAYBE – a group for 7-19 year olds to come together for plays and last but not least Travelling Light – the main acting group for both young adults and beyond. With these three arms, Travelling Light as a company has been able to reach out to a diverse group of people and giving an avenue of expression to children who might not be able to fully express themselves in the conventional means.
Reading the stories about the children who attend these theatre groups, children and parents alike have deep appreciation and joy to what theatre can done to change them. One such story was of a young boy with special needs, Elijah, using non-verbal communication for his first few weeks at the group. This slowly changed as he felt the encouragement that was given to around. This year, Elijah and his friends at Louder Than Words put up their first play ‘ Out of the Woods’ in front of their parents, friends and teachers. It was truly a night for all to remember.
All youth and adult groups rehearse for and put up a play at least once annually, a process enjoyed immensely by all. Why not give it a try yourself?
Charity and Donations
As Travelling Light plans for the future, it also increasingly needs funding to ensure they are able to take in everyone who wants to do theatre plays. At the moment, they are a registered charity with the English Arts Council and are also receiving funds from the Tudor Grant. If interested in theatre and feel that you can do something, why not think of donating to this cause?