Millais at the Minerva


Millais School will be performing The Changing Room by Chris Bush at the Minerva Theatre on Thursday 22 March, as part of National Theatre Connections – a nationwide celebration of new plays for young people.

The Changing Room is one of ten brand new plays written especially for Connections by a selection of the best playwriting talent in the UK. The play is a lyrical piece about existing on the cusp of growing up – Bodies in flux and perspectives shifting; knowing change is coming but not what that change will look like. Are we teenagers? Are we children? What are we? … Set in  and around a swimming pool, The Changing Room follows a group of teens full of excitement, impatience and uncertainty, each with their own secret worries and desires for what comes next.

Chris Bush explained why he wrote the play: “In writing this piece, I’m trying to capture something of the hormonal rush and sensory overload of adolescence in all its messy and magical glory. While no two teenagers are the same, ultimately, I wanted to show that this is an experience no-one goes through alone. Cast size: 10–50.”

National Theatre Connections is one of the UK’s largest celebrations of youth theatre. Plays are commissioned for and about young people, from some of the best contemporary playwrights, and performed by schools and youth theatres all over the UK and Ireland.

In 2018, National Theatre Connections is working with up to 270 Youth Theatres and schools to stage ten newly commissioned plays, adding to the 160+ plays the National Theatre have commissioned for young people since 1995.  All the companies will transfer their production to one of 28 Connections Partner Theatres across the UK (Millais will perform at The Minerva, Chichester).

Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre, said: “Connections is at the heart of the National Theatre’s work for young people and one of the most exciting and important projects we do. We think it’s vital that young people, wherever they are in the country and whatever their future path, have a chance to get involved in theatre.”

Mrs Sykes, Director of Creative Arts at Millais, said: “Our talented young actresses will experience professional theatre-making, mirroring that of a company producing a new play in any theatre in the country. They will experience the rehearsal studio space the professional lighting and sound and most impressively tread the boards that Ian McKellan, Anna Chancellor, Lenny Henry and Ophelia Lovibond have before.

“This unique opportunity has been a team effort with much of the inspiration and direction coming from the cast and we are thrilled with the performers and artists they have become. Their dedication and commitment to the show over the last 5 months has been outstanding and although we hope the process is not over yet, we hope they are as proud of the production they have realised as we are.  In July, ten companies will perform as part of the NT Connections festival to represent each of the 10 plays at the National Theatre in London. Fingers crossed for Millais Productions so they can take this unique opportunity all the way to London!”

To book to see Millais School perform ‘The Changing Room ‘at the Minerva Theatre, Chichester on Thursday 22 March – please contact the box office: 01243 781312 or visit: https://www.cft.org.uk/boxoffice/ticket/93802

For further information,please contact Mrs Davis: 01403 282013, admin@millais.org.uk or, to find out more about National Theatre Connections, please visit: nationaltheatre.org.uk/connections.

Suitable for ages: 12+

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