Winners of The Mousetraps 2015 announced

The awards

The 2015 awards for The Mousetraps

The fourth annual edition of theatre awards ‘The Mousetraps’ took place on 22 March at the Charing Cross Theatre. The Mousetraps, voted for by young theatregoers aged 15 to 23, are organised by Mousetrap Theatre Projects: a theatre education charity widening access to performance for young people with limited means and support or special needs.

The awards honoured West End favourites such as Wicked, presented with the prize for show I’d sell my soul to be in; Billy Elliot, winning fascinating storyline; STOMP, picking up most dazzling choreography; and Les Misérables, named musical that blew my mind.

Other theatre favourites such as War Horse and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time also came away with prizes, for best play and best design respectively. The Scottsboro Boys was presented with the award for best ensemble and The Book of Mormon won the title for show that split my sides.

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Martin Freeman accepting his award for best male performer at The Mousetraps (Credit: @ZareenWalker)

The Mousetraps’ acting awards went to two major stage and screen stars: Gemma Arterton, who was named best female performer for her lead role in Made in Dagenham, and Martin Freeman, who collected his title for best male performer for Richard III in person.

The ceremony, compered by members of Mousetrap’s Youth Forum, was opened by actor Samuel J Holmes. The presentation of awards was accompanied by performances from young people, featuring street dance, performance poetry, musical improvisation and Shakespearean monologues.

To see more from the 2015 Mousetraps, check out the Twitter hashtag #MousetrapAwards. For more information about Mousetrap Theatre Projects, visit www.mousetrap.org.uk.

IdeasTap to close due to lack of funding

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Peter De Haan has announced the charity’s closure

Arts charity IdeasTap has announced it is to close in June after failing to secure future funding. IdeasTap’s chairman Peter De Haan said of the news: ‘We’ve worked tirelessly over the last 12 months to confirm future funding for our operations. It is with great sadness and reluctance that we have reached this decision.’

IdeasTap was founded during the financial crisis in 2008, aiming to assist unemployed young people by creating industry opportunities at leading arts organisations as well as providing access to funding, competitions, jobs, training and advice. The charity has accrued over 190,000 members and has awarded more than £2.3m worth of direct funding and accompanying expert mentoring to emerging artists.

Following IdeasTap’s closure on 2 June, the charity will honour ongoing commitments, such as showcasing four companies at the Edinburgh Fringe, until the end of the year; the IdeasTap website will also continue to operate as an archive, featuring a selection of members’ and partners’ projects as well as career guides and advice.

www.ideastap.com

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The full version of this news story features in Teaching Drama Summer 1 – out next week. Subscribe to the print or digital edition for more news, features and information. Single issues are also available in print and digital from just £2.49.

Take a holiday for charity

National charity Sense needs teachers and teaching assistants to volunteer to take a holiday this summer to support children and adults who are deafblind.

Throughout the UK there are currently 356,000 deafblind citizens, 4,000 of which are children, a number that is set to increase by 60% by 2030.

The charity, which has been working for over 50 years campaigning for those who are deafblind, runs 26, week-long breaks for children and adults. The holidays take place throughout England and Wales including city breaks in Bristol and Cardiff and treks as far as the Yorkshire dales.

Volunteers will receive a free week long summer holiday and could be doing anything from making sandcastles, to camping whilst making a real difference to the lives of those effected by deafblindness.

Those interested in applying must be over 18 years old, no previous knowledge or training is necessary as there will be support and training provided for volunteers.

The deadline for applications is March, places fill up quickly so enter soon to avoid disappointment. For more information, visit www.sense.org.uk/volunteering or call 0845 127 0060.

Finsbury Park Theatre against the clock for funding

Park Theatre have been given the opportunity to have one floor of its new complex  in Finsbury transformed into a studio for community and educational work. However, they have been given just three months to raise the £400,000 needed for the development.

If the money is raised in time, the new floor will house Islington Community Theatre (ICT) who have recently been ousted from their Holloway base. ICT provide free acting lessons to disadvantaged young people. If the funding does not materialise, their future will hang in the balance.

The £2 million Park Theatre is due to open in Autumn 2012. It will contain two theatres with a seating capacity of 200 and 90 respectively. Currently Park Theatre have raised £75,000 through donations – if the target is left unreached, the floor will be converted into private flats.

Artistic director of the ICT, Ned Glasier said: ‘It would be incredibly sad to lose it to a flat. We already get amazing support from places like the Pleasance Theatre, but being based at the Park would help us connect our young people to a working theatre on a day-to-day basis and give them new opportunities particularly in technical theatre.’

To find out more information or to donate visit http://parktheatre.co.uk/