National Theatre Connections 500: apply by 8 July

In 2016, the National Theatre’s Connections festival turns 21 and to celebrate they are looking for 500 secondary schools, colleges and youth theatres to take part in the biggest Connections festival to date. Don’t miss out on the chance for your students to perform at the National Theatre.

Why take part?

Connections is the National Theatre’s annual youth theatre festival, which promotes theatre-making and opportunities for 13-19-year-olds across the UK.

The festival offers an incredible opportunity for young theatre companies to produce one of their specially commissioned plays written by leading playwrights for young performers, and to perform at a leading regional theatre in the UK.

It provides opportunities to foster schools in your region to learn about the whole theatre-making process, including performance, set design and costumes, light and sound operation and stage management.

Connections 500 plays

The National Theatre has chosen 12 fantastic plays for the Connections 500 portfolio, picked from the 150 already commissioned for young people since 1995. The 12 plays are:

  • Bedbug by Snoo Wilson, Gary Kemp & Guy Pratt
  • Eclipse by Simon Armitage
  • Take Away by Jackie Kay
  • The Musicians by Patrick Marber
  • Citizenship by Mark Ravenhill
  • It Snows by Bryony Lavery & Frantic Assembly
  • Blackout by Davey Anderson
  • Bassett by James Graham
  • Children of Killers by Katori Hall
  • Gargantua by Carl Grose
  • I’m Spilling My Heart Out Here by Stacey Gregg
  • What Are They Like? by Lucinda Coxon


It costs £450 to take part in Connections. The National Theatre wants to ensure the widest possible range of young companies can take part in Connections, so to avoid any barrier to participation are offering Skills Academy members access to bursaries  to support  with rehearsals, production and transfer costs and can be worth up to 100% of costs.

Applications are now open

Applications to take part are now open and the deadline for applying is Wednesday 8 July. You can find further information and details on how to apply.  Alternatively you can speak to one of their Connections team on 020 7452 3313 or email