Behind The Scenes

Behind The Scenes issue #11– March 2018
Thanks to our wider community of donors, trust and foundation supporters and sponsors, ATYP achieved the following in 2017: 
  • over $55,000 raised creating 140 scholarships places for drama workshops involving three  partner charities;
  • International ambassadors Rebel Wilson and Rose Byrne awarded annual scholarships for two emerging artists who presented an inspiring showcase of works in Sydney and Los Angeles;
  • funding for the development of three new productions;
  • received a Sydney Theatre Award for ATYP’s Co-Production with Shopfront Theatre of our very moving production Dignity of Risk;
  • high quality education programs delivered to  hundreds of young people across the country;
  • a full  computer upgrade thanks to our generous Annual Appeal donors.  This is helping us to work smarter and work remotely, while reducing our use of paper.  We also improved our storage of all digital media and our online security;
  • supported ATYP’s Fresh Ink program that engaged 44 young playwrights aged 13-26 and 46 young actors; and
  • funded ATYP’s Writer in Residence, Tasnim Hossain, who is now one of 12 talented artists chosen for Melbourne Theatre Company’s 2018 Women in Theatre Program.
A remarkable year! 
So what does 2018 have in store? Well, already philanthropy is helping us tour two shows: our award-winning A Town Named War Boy and the international collaboration, Patrice Balbina’s Chance Encounter With The End of The World.
Funding has enabled us to do research on ATYP's impact and this has helped us better understand the impact of our programs on young people. In this 11th issue of Behind The Scenes, we highlight  some of the findings research specialists, Patternmakers have reported back to us following the extensive research they conducted with the ATYP community in 2017.
Finally, we’re excited to introduce you to a new member on the Development Team. Her skills and experience are vital to what will be a transformative year for ATYP.
Thank you very much for your ongoing support of ATYP. 
Research reveals positive impact of youth theatre on young Australians
ATYP is committed to improving the lives of all young Australians through the positive impacts that participation in drama has on young people and their mental health. In 2017, we engaged research agency Patternmakers to evaluate: “What impact, if any, participation in theatre has on the mental health of young people”. Patternmakers surveyed over 1,200 current and past ATYP participants across three tiers of evaluation – a brief on-line survey; a detailed questionnaire; and in-depth interviews. It was one of the largest objective surveys of its type ever conducted in Australia. The results are astonishing:
  • 94% identified a positive impact on their overall wellbeing
  • 88% identified improved ability to work in a team
  • 80% identified an improvement to interpersonal skills
  • 73% articulated that activites enabled them to tell their story
  • 71% identified increased resilience in coping with challenges
  • 52% identified improved anxiety levels
But how is ATYP creating these results? The research found in the qualitative and quantitative data a number of underlying drivers of impact:
  • Safe space – creating an environment where young people can experiment
  • Vibrant atmosphere – ATYP’s buzzing venues and proximity to other arts organisations
  • Student-led approach – empowering young people with creative control
  • Calibre of tutors – recruiting theatre professionals to share their passion
  • Making work by, and for, young people – creating new work with an authentic voice
  • National reach – creating opportunities across Australia
It further states that “many of these attributes are common in other youth arts companies, which suggests that the impacts occurring across the arts sector and the country could be profound”. 
Already this report is demonstrating the impact of our company is far greater than we had originally believed. It is greatly informing company decision making, and prompting us to undertake further research.
For more information, you can access the full report here.
Special Performance for ATYP Supporters – Intersection 2018: Chrysalis
It was great to connect with some of you at our Thank You Event during the season of  Intersection 2018: Chrysalis on February 15, at Griffin Theatre (our first show there!) For those who couldn’t make it, we heard from Artistic Director Fraser Corfield before the show, speaking about the importance of philanthropy, especially for ATYP’s writing program. Young playwright, Gretel Vella, spoke of the impact  her participation in ATYP programs has had on her professional development as an emerging writer. 
These events are always a lovely way to meet and connect with our supporters and a wonderful way for you to have special access behind the scenes to meet the cast and creative teams on our shows. There will be more events like this later in 2018 and we hope to see you there.  
Meet our new team member Georgia Wilson 
This month we welcomed  Georgia Wilson, who is the company’s first full-time Development Coordinator. Georgia will assist on philanthropic activities and says that “It is exciting to be working not only in the world of theatre, but with a team of dedicated, passionate and hard working people.”
While studying at the University of NSW, Georgia was an actor and producer with the UNSW Theatre Society. She brings experience from working with the Sydney Living Museums Development Team. 
“I know that without healthy funding and a group of dedicated people who support ATYP (through any and all means), the company would not be able to implement the wonderful workshops, shows and scholarships that we host to instil a love of theatre, acting, writing and beyond in to our young Australians. It gives me great pleasure to be a part of this.” And we are very glad to have her join the ATYP family.
Adèle Jeffreys Memorial Fund
It was with great sadness that we said goodbye to our beloved colleague, Learning Manager Adèle Jeffreys, who passed away in November after  a courageous battle with cancer. 
In her memory and with her families blessing, we have created  the Adèle Jeffreys Memorial Fund to ensure young Australians have access to transformational theatre experiences that entertain, inspire, and help them learn. Adèle’s legacy will continue through this fund, which is supported and managed by ATYP. To date an extraordinary $18,615 has been raised by 64 donors, and the fund continues to grow. 
Adèle was passionate about championing drama education for young people. At the same time she made sure that the processes we use for creative learning are applied not just with young people, but across the whole company. Even our staff meetings were changed by Adele - she would encourage us all to get out from behind the board table and articulate the project that was giving us ‘a fire in the belly', the thing that we were passionate about that week. 
The Adèle Jeffreys Memorial Fund will be used to establish a permanent creative space in our new home being built on Pier 2/3, where young people and professional artists can apply the processes and philosophies that Adèle developed for interactive, participatory learning.  
If you would like to join other supporters in donating to the Memorial Fund, please visit our website or contact Andrew Deane directly on +61 2 9270 2421.
On behalf of Adèle’s family, we thank you for your support.