Inspirational drama from National Youth Theatre and politician

National Youth Theatre's If Chloe Can.  Photo by Helen  Maybanks
National Youth Theatre’s If Chloe Can. Photos by Helen Maybanks

The National Youth Theatre is presenting one-off, free productions of the inspirational You Can and If Chloe Can for school groups.

The productions will be performed on November 10 and 17 at the Ambassadors Theatre, where the West End REP season is currently showing.

The production is part of the NYT’s work to improve education and opportunity in the arts and their commitment to nurturing young and diverse talent.

If Chloe Can was conceived by Employment Minister Esther McVey MP who interviewed some of the world’s most successful women, many of whom have got to the top in the face of huge adversity.

She published their life stories in a magazine to inspire young girls to achieve their potential.

If Chloe Can National Youth Theatre

After the huge success of the project McVey launched You Can, a male version of the magazine.

McVey and the NYT saw a synergy between the aims of the If Chloe Can magazine and NYT’s mission to support young people’s talent.

The NYT commissioned award winning-writer, star of Game of Thrones and NYT alumnus, Luke Barnes, to write a play in response.

You Can premiered at a reception at Speaker’s House in the House of Commons hosted by the Speaker the Rt Hon John Bercow MP in spring 2013.

The urgent adaptation of McVey’s original magazine, If Chloe Can, is written by NYT graduate and emerging playwright, 23-year-old Karla Crome, of E4’s BAFTA winning Misfits.

In 2011, the play premiered at the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue to an audience of 1000 inner-city school girls aged 14-16.

The productions will involve a 30 minute performance led by NYT members. An interactive Q&A will also take place with panellists set to include Margaret Mountford (The Apprentice), Gaby Hinsliff (Guardian Columnist, Grazia Political Editor), Debbie Moore (founder of Pineapple Dance Studios) Carol Bagnald (Regional Commercial Director, London, at HSBC), Jo Salter (Britain’s first female fast jet pilot) Lucinda (Hair Extension expert).

Nick Knowles (DIY SOS) will be joining the panel for You Can, with the rest of the speakers still to be confirmed.

Ester McVey said: “Study after study shows that seeing, hearing and meeting real life ‘role models’ is a great way of inspiring others to achieve their goals.

“That’s why this initiative is so important and why so many people have given their time to support it.

“Huge thanks to NYT for bringing my work to life in such an engaging way.”

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