BYMT announces 20th season of new music theatre productions and celebratory gala

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British Youth Music Theatre (BYMT) has announced its 20th season lineup for 2024.

This milestone year will be marked by the production of seven brand new British musicals and the development of seven additional musical theatre ideas through week-long camps.

The season’s full and public productions are set to grace the stages of notable venues such as Birmingham Hippodrome, Southwark Playhouse, Lyric Belfast, Octagon Bolton, Northcott Exeter and The New Wolsey, Ipswich. The productions will be under the guidance of acclaimed creatives including Dean Johnson, Tom Ling, Amir Shoenfeld, Francesca Goodridge, Ruth Chan and Ellie Jones.

The season will commence with Animal Farm during the Easter break, presenting the classic tale with a unique anti-capitalist perspective and a folk score. Following this is the third installment of the Tony Macaulay Paperboy/Breadboy trilogy, All Growed Up, debuting in early August. Other notable productions include Unbound, exploring themes of witchcraft and community belonging; Wonderland in Alice, a movement-led production delving into non-binary identity; The Power of Camelot, a blend of Arthurian myths from various UK regions; the New Music Theatre Award-winning Welcome to Serene, set in a sand-engulfed seaside town; and When We Strike, a punk rock rendition of the 1880s matchstick girls’ strike in London.

In a conscious effort to address sector imbalances, BYMT has ensured that nine out of the fourteen composer/writers are female or non-binary, and all creative teams include artists from under-represented backgrounds. The shows, programmed by the BYMT Young Company Panel, aim to resonate with young audiences through epic themes and innovative storytelling, showcasing a diversity of musical styles from folk to electro-pop.

Complementing the season’s productions, BYMT will host a celebratory gala event. This event will not only feature a public performance highlighting the past 20 years of BYMT’s musicals but will also showcase current talents poised to revolutionize the musical theatre landscape. The gala will be accompanied by a music theatre symposium, offering networking opportunities with industry figures for current members.

Significantly, BYMT has announced the relocation of their head office from Peckham, South London, to Leeds, Yorkshire, in the autumn of 2024. This move, supported by a feasibility study funded by Arts Council England, positions BYMT centrally in the UK, enhancing accessibility and collaboration across the nations. In addition to the Leeds office, a smaller satellite production office will continue operations in London.

Emily Gray, Creative Director of BYMT said: “This moment of change coming in our 20th year feels a wonderful opportunity to celebrate BYMT as a national company, based in the centre of the UK and reaching young people across the nations and beyond. Led by our Young Company, we have created a programme of shows which highlights the innovation and ambition that drives the new music theatre sector forwards, questioning what it is possible to say in musical form. BYMT will continue to seek out young people who want to explore the making of new collaborative work, enhance their performance skills, celebrate inclusive processes and shape the future of music theatre.”

About the author: Josh Darvill

Josh is Stageberry's editor with over five years of experience writing about theatre in the West End and across the UK. Prior to following his passion for musicals, he worked for more than a decade as a TV journalist.


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