New funding brings Ripon teenagers closer to the festival

The festival has been awarded funds to develop a new partnership with Ripon YMCA. Leeds based theatre company Forget About The Dog has been invited to present their touring show Happy Place as the Festival’s opening event.

The piece, which explores happiness, friendship and the role technology plays in our world is particularly relevant to young people.

We are keen for the show to be enjoyed by a packed house of young people alongside more seasoned theatre-goers and will be working with Ripon YMCA’s Young Leaders to make the most of the theatre company’s visit.


Funding from The Local Fund for Harrogate District will pay for a group of young people to experience the Happy Place show earlier on its tour and attend workshops with members of the theatre company around themes of well-being and happiness.

Funds will also enable ticket discounts for young people, and develop the group as young theatre promoters. They will be supported in publicising the Happy Place show amongst their peers and trained as volunteers to run the event at the opening of the Festival on Wednesday 7 June.

Ripon YMCA Young Leaders have chosen the festival project as one of their activities as it fits well with their aims.

Jayne Shackleton, Community and Development Manager at the YMCA says: “Young People in Ripon have expressed feelings of being disassociated from events going on in the city. They actively want to have a positive involvement in their community, but often feel excluded. This project will help develop their confidence in putting on activities and give them a route into a significant community event this summer.”

Tina Salden from Ripon Theatre Festival commented: “We can’t wait to work with the Young Leaders on this project. We hope that their involvement will grow from here and they will be able to help the festival develop and reach more young people in the future.”                                                                   

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