ThirdSpace Theatre will be the new name for Windmill Young Actors. We are going to be unveiling our exciting new logo soon and we can’t wait to share it with us. As well as that, we’re moving onto a new and improved booking system – so it’s a time of big change for ThirdSpace.
In the meantime, you will begin to see emails from the team ending in @thirdspacetheatre.co.uk. It’s us, don’t worry! We will still be able to receive any emails that are mistakenly sent to the old @windmillyoungactors.com emails, but we will be phasing them out in the future.
For now, here’s something from Tanushka:
“Firstly, let me say I have a strong affection for the name Windmill Young Actors; this name has a strong history to it with lots of deeply joyful memories. One young person said ” I have a happy chapter in my childhood and the name of that chapter is Windmill Young Actors!” These beautiful words certainly delayed this process. However as we have evolved over the past 11 years, our name doesn’t fully reflect our scope. We are no longer regularly performing at the Windmill Theatre, and our company includes not only young actors, but writers, musicians, directors and theatre makers, aged up to 25 years old. Windmill Young Actors no longer reflects or represents what we do.
“I felt we needed a name that can hold all of the different aspects of what we do, from 6 year olds coming to their first drama class to 23 year olds having their first paid job as an assistant producer or director in Brighton Festival. We are trying to create a space where young people’s voices are leading the way in the work we make. We are not here purely to get young people onto tv or into drama school. We are trying to create communities where young people have a nurturing and exciting place to exert their creative independence and to be part of ambitious works of art.
“It has taken more than 18 months to search for a name that reflects our core values, will take us into the future, grow with our ambitions and not limit us in the work that we wish to do.
“I want to share with you an article I recently wrote for a local news magazine about the concept of third space, and why we have chosen that as our name, ThirdSpace Theatre.”
– Tanushka Marah, Artistic Director
Co-creation with young people is vitally important
The most exciting creative work I have done in my professional life as a theatre director is working with young people. I learn so much from young people and, like a vampire, live off their positivity and energy.
I’m writing this having just co-created a huge outdoor spectacle in Brighton Festival called Bakkhai. This was made with a core creative team of 50 young people aged 12 – 23. I feel we achieved something seemingly impossible, with a completely new, politically relevant script, staging a performance with 80 participants, culminating on a huge hill. The adults were worried how we could do this in time, myself included; the young people were fearless and kept us going.
The process of co-creation, where young people and professional artists are equally inspired and challenged, can start very young. When young people feel a sense of autonomy and confidence they have creative riches to share. Because this happens on a creative level not an academic level, those people leading the way with intelligence and foresight might be the very ones who struggle in a school environment. Also, this doesn’t discount the experience and skill of professionals but there is a space where the two can meet and genuinely collaborate. In investigating the potential of this I came across the concept of third space.
Third space is a space where groups who can be marginalised or unheard by society can interact on an equal footing. Third space can become an area of radical openness, a space where we can discuss and possibly dissolve some boundaries of race, gender, and class.
Third space is not imposed from above, but created from within. Its central concept is its openness to change – the softness of its borders of definition. It is in constant flux – an open-ended set of defining moments.
This is why we have changed our name from Windmill Young Actors to ThirdSpace. After a year of reflection and hunting for the right name we realised we are not just creating a space for people to be actors but one in which they can be creative makers, thinkers – young people with creative and intellectual agencies. So, we make shows, we run drama classes and some people go to drama school and become actors but for many it was a beautiful chapter in their life of where they played, debated, created, and made friends.