The Beauty of Sleeping Wood
- Kelly Apter
- 11 December 2008
The Old Sheriff Court, Glasgow, until 24 Dec
With the ubiquitous run of Aladdins, Sleeping Beauties and Cinderellas doing the rounds at this time of year, it’s nice to see somebody mixing things up a little. The Beauty of Sleeping Wood is in fact based on the well-loved tale of Sleeping Beauty, but Scottish Youth Theatre (SYT) is putting its own slant on it.
‘We didn’t want to just tell the story of Sleeping Beauty,’ says director, Mary McCluskey. ‘We wanted it to be a wee bit different and interactive as well, so we start at the end of the story when the princess wakes up and wants to find out what happened to her.’
Featuring some of the most talented young people attending SYT’s classes in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen, the production gives both actors and technical crew valuable experience of staging a show. ‘They’re all either in their final year at school, on a gap year or at university or college,’ explains McCluskey. ‘We call the company SYT Productions, and see it as a pre-professional training group.’
Aimed at ages 3-7, The Beauty of Sleeping Wood uses music, storytelling and audience interaction to drive the piece along, including some tried and tested methods carved from SYT’s weekly classes. ‘I think younger audiences in particular like to feel involved,’ says McCluskey. ‘And because we deliver classes for children aged 3 upwards, we decided to use some of our workshop skills in the theatre to get the young folk up on their feet and help tell the story.’