EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS… Young Company

The Blyth Festival Young Company is a summer drama intensive which provides young people aged 14-19 the opportunity to learn from experienced theatre professionals as they create and prepare a play for production. The Young Company program begins July 15, with performance dates August 15 to 17. There are no registration fees, and all interested individuals are welcome. For more information, please call 1.877.862.5984.​

This year, the Young Company presents Eco Echo, a play for Greta Thunberg.

In December 2018, at the UN climate summit, 15 year-old Greta Thunberg stood up in front of an auditorium full of world leaders and told them, they were “behaving like irresponsible children”. In January 2019, she stood in front of the global business elite in Davos, Switzerland and decried: “Some people, some companies, some decision-makers in particular, have known exactly what priceless values they have been sacrificing to continue making unimaginable amounts of money. And I think many of you here today belong to that group of people.”

In the past year, through her inspiring acts of defiant truth telling, Greta has become the face of a bold new environmental movement, lead by young people, many of whom are not even franchised to vote.

From Climate School Walk Outs, to her powerful Ted Talk, to her international call for action, Greta is changing the world.

Together with director and co-creator Pippa Johnstone, The Blyth Festival Young Company are generating an Eco Echo.

The Blyth Festival Young Company is open to youths aged 14 – 19. It is FREE to participate. Creativity begins July 15. Performance dates are August 15, 16, and 17.​

Young Company Alumni

Realizing young dreams

Severn Thompson – After spending many summers as a member of the Blyth Young Company, Severn went on to perform in three seasons at the Blyth Festival. She is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada and Stratford’s Birmingham Conservatory and has performed in various theatres across Canada including several seasons at both the Shaw and Stratford Festivals. Severn was back at the Blyth Festival, directing Beyond the Farm Show in 2013, starring in Seeds in 2015, co-creating and directing The Pigeon King in 2017 and 2018, and co-creating and directing Wing Night at the Boot in 2018.

Geoffrey Armour – A Goderich native, Geoff has completed his training at George Brown theatre school, has studied at Lécole International de Théatre Jacques Lecoq in Paris and has travelled the world creating, teaching and performing. Geoff was the director of the Young Company in 2015.

Kendra Fry – Kendra learned the professional ropes as a stage manager. Past General Manager at Theatre Passe Muraille, Kendra is now the General Manager of Trinity-St. Paul’s United Church.

Sam Sholdice – Starting on stage with The Outdoor Donnellys, The Young Company and The Ballad of Stompin’ Tom, Sam is now a rising composer, musical director and sound designer, working with companies across Ontario. Sam debuted his first musical, PROGRAM, at the 2011 Summerworks Festival in Toronto. Sam was Sound Designer for Blyth’s Beyond the Farm Show and studio series production, Falling: A Wake in 2013 and wrote the music for 2015’s Fury.

Lisa Hood – Lisa graduated from the University of Toronto/Sheridan and was the General Manager for the Livery Theatre in Goderich. Lisa was the Marketing & Publicity Coordinator at the Blyth Festival in 2013. Lisa now teaches drama at Central Huron Secondary School.

Heather Thompson – Heather began at the Blyth Festival on stage with The Young Company, The Outdoor Donnellys and 2005’s The Thirteenth One. She became an apprentice stage manager at the Blyth Festival and is now a professional stage manager, having worked with the Shaw Festival, Factory Theatre, Opera Atalier, Theatre Smith Gilmour and others. Heather was Assistant Stage Manager for Beyond the Farm Show and Garrison’s Garage in 2013 and Production Stage Manager in 2017.