NHTP Youth Repertory Co. presents an evening of new work

New Hampshire Theatre Project celebrates their 30th anniversary season with the Youth Repertory Companies Spring Showcase, Ominous and Accurate: A Pile of Stories, a brand new collection of scenes exploring themes and topics chosen by the teen group.

The performances will take place on Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13 at 7 p.m. at New Hampshire Theatre Project at 959 Islington Street, Portsmouth NH and are free and open to the public. “The students are exploring the environment, extremism, classic literature, and space,” explains Youth Repertory Company director Robin Fowler. “The stories are comedic and dramatic. They cover the genres of action, horror and suspense.” As part of the winter trimester students chose these far-reaching topics and have been exploring each aspect through improv games, scene creation and monologue writing. “Through this exploration they developed six very diverse scenes,” continues Fowler. “It’s really got it all.”

The Youth Repertory Company, now in its twentieth year, is designed for students interested in both personal growth and learning the fundamentals and power of theatre. “It’s been a great exercise in divining what makes a scene interesting for both viewer and performer,” adds Fowler. NHTP’s Youth Repertory Company emphasizes the ensemble aspects of performance as well as the process of exploring theatre as a craft, focusing on technique and collaboration – and this year’s second performance is no different. Led by Fowler, a resident artist and Youth Repertory Alum, the show is comprised of six scenes and six improvised “machines” inspired by the topics, all broken up by improvised true story monologues. “Each night will be just a little bit different,” he explains. “In a fresh and exciting way the students have formed skills in responding to each other, and their audience – and we’ll see that change every time they perform.”

As part of the 30th Anniversary of New Hampshire Theatre Project, and the 20th year of the Youth Repertory Company, an Open House will be held on Saturday April 13 between 2pm and 4pm, prior to the final Youth Repertory Company performance. “We’re throwing open the doors to the theatre,” says NHTP’s new Associate Artistic Director Catherine Stewart. “We’re taking the opportunity to invite the community in, so we can envision what the next thirty years can look like.” Business owners, local residents and future collaborators are encouraged to head over to 959 Islington Street to tour the theatre and ask questions about the space. “If you’ve ever been curious about the theatre, or our hidden gem of a garden, then this is a wonderful time to look around.” New Hampshire Theatre Project is home to a 50-seat black box theatre, a flexible space for performances, workshops, meetings and gatherings. “A theatre is a community hub,” says Stewart. “And there are not many of those left, so we want to make sure that our community know this resource is there for them.” Individuals, families, and friends will have an opportunity to play theatre games, explore props and costume in the Theatrical Photobooth and to be part of NHTP’s conversation asking “What Can Theatre Do?” Those experiencing the Open House are encouraged to visit other West End businesses, including New Hampshire Theatre Project’s new neighbor Loaded Question Brewing Co. as well as Ohana Kitchen, Street, and Cornerstone Pizza after their tour of the theatre.