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Teenagers’ tribute to victims of Paris attacks

Posted onPosted on 16th Feb
Teenagers’ tribute to victims of Paris attacks

Teenagers have drawn inspiration from the public’s response in the aftermath of the Paris terror attacks, for a major Nottinghamshire youth festival this week.

Unity, a group of young people working with Nottinghamshire County Council’s Youth Arts Team, had scheduled its first autumn group session to plan for the performances on November 14. It was the day after the tragic events unfolded in Paris where 127 people were killed.

As teenagers met for the first time at the Old Library, in Leeming Street, Mansfield, news of what had unfolded overnight in France was the only main topic of conversation.

Guitarist Beth Adams, 15, from Southwell Lane, Kirkby, said: “It was an extremely difficult session. People arrived for the workshop having seen the events on the TV and it was understandably the major thing on everyone’s mind because of the horror of what had happened.

“Our group was called Unity, and as the session progressed we made a collective decision that we wanted to focus our creative energies on unity and trying to make sense of this horrific incident through our music and performance. It has taken several months, but I am very pleased with what we have achieved and I am looking forward to performing on the night.”

A group of around 80 teenagers are performing at the Unity Showcase on Thursda,y February 18, at 7.30pm at the Palace Theatre, in Mansfield. It is the first evening of three live performances under the banner of Showcase 2016.

Funds will also be collected during each of the events for the charity Unicef to support the victims of the Paris atrocity and other incidents.

The annual music, film, dance and drama extravaganza is organised by the county council’s County Youth Arts team with three evening events at the Palace Theatre in Mansfield and the Royal Concert Hall in Nottingham. The County Youth Arts Showcase project works with more than 400 young people each year for several months in preparation for the show with initial auditions taking place in the autumn.

Councillor Liz Plant, Vice-Chairman of the Children’s and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council said: “The young people within Unity have worked tirelessly along with everyone involved in Showcase 2016 and the three events should be tremendous, highlighting the huge creative talent we have across Nottinghamshire. Unity wanted to write about the impact and the public’s response to the Paris attacks and other issues such as global equality and have produced an extremely powerful and inspiring performance which everyone will be able to relate to. They can be immensely proud of their efforts.”

Unity’s piece entitled ‘Only the unloved hate’ is an original composition and the first creative workshop in November was followed by others as they developed their performance.

The young people who worked on it include:

Chenae Anita Bakut, Broxtowe, 18; Denisa Douse; Nottingham, 21; Rachael Dixon, Mansfield,18; Beth Adams, Ashfield ,15; Oliver Siggee, Mansfield,16; Katie Powdrill, Netherfield, 19; The Dukes (Abi Howard, Jade Gordon, Owen Shutt) – from Worksop, all 18, collaborating with Angus McCleod, Mark Allsop, Sam Jones and rapper Bru-C. They will be supported by a wider group of dancers.

This is one of the most eagerly anticipated events in the calendar for us to showcase the talents of young people across the county who excel in music, film, dance and drama. Showcase 2016 will once again be a great programme with high quality entertainment which everyone will enjoy.

For more details about the event visit

The other two events:

Dance and Drama – Friday February 19, at 7.30pm, at the Palace Theatre, in Mansfield

This event will feature a range of dance, drama and other projects. It will feature performances from a range of groups including Wheelchair dance from Cauldwell House; Back Foot Forward (Tuxford), Rush Dance (Rushcliffe) Retford Oaks (Retford), Jungle Bunch (Bilsthorpe), Positive Moves (Gedling), Flying High Interm Youth Dance (Gedling), The Prototypes (Mansfield) Steppin’ Serlby Dance (Mansfield), Outwood Portland Academy, North Notts Youth Dance Company, Reach Learning Disability Southwell and Valley Dance (Worksop), MX4 Street Dance (Mansfield).

There will also be a film shown on the night by the Xzibit group led by Jon Bevan from County Youth Arts whose team of young people took inspiration from sculptures at Rufford Abbey Country Park to produce a dance film there.

Tickets are £3.50 or £2 from Palace Theatre Box Office on 01623 633133.

Music Showcase – Tuesday February 23, at 8pm, at the Royal Concert Hall, in Nottingham

This event will be a music showcase featuring The Able Orchestra of students from Fountaindale School working with Si Tew and Ronnie Sampson from County Youth Arts to develop their own music using iPads and technology. The Supergroup – talented musicians who have been brought together to form a band following their auditions – who will be collaborating with Rob Green when they appear at the Royal Concert Hall. The ‘Earth Below’ County Youth Arts Supergroup formed this year with Nina Smith and Matt Blick.

Other performers will include Abi Brown with Destiny and Jephthah, Rachael Dixon, Encaptured, Charlie Fearon, 15 Keys, the Classical Supergroup and the National Choir.

Tickets are free (but must be obtained in advance) from the Royal Concert Hall Box Office on 0115 9895555. The event will begin with a Music Industry panel at 7pm which will feature tips and advice on careers within the music industry.