Saturday, 21 May 2016

Please help the NYMT's Brass cast trip to France

Today has possibly been the most sedentary day of my entire existence. I discovered in the mid afternoon that I'd been in competition with Fiona, who has the 'flu, to see who could do the least. I haven't moved from the sofa. I didn't even make myself lunch. Here's what I HAVE achieved today:

- Sent three emails
- Read four emails
- Spoken to Philippa and my parents on the phone
- Texted Fiona (multiple times)
- Taken two photographs of myself on snap chat
- Ordered a pizza
- Walked in a circle around a number of art deco housing blocks on the A1 towards Finchley
- Eaten a pizza
- Watched more television than I could ever have thought possible.
- Eaten a bowl of pears

Anyway, it doesn't really matter what I was doing, because the important thing I have to write about today is the National Youth Music Theatre's trip to France, and the little fundraising mission we're just about to set sail on.

Those who know my show Brass will know that it is set in the First World War, and tells the story of the Leeds Pals battalion. I am presently organising a trip which will see the cast of the current production of Brass visit the spot where the real Pals went over the top, almost exactly 100 years to the very hour that it happened. We will stand in the field where No-Man's-Land once was, play the last post, and give our thanks to the brave men from Leeds who fell at that spot.

The trip will be extraordinarily moving, and give the young cast, many who are from Yorkshire, an opportunity to entirely immerse themselves in the world of the show. They will suddenly get a sense of how those men felt going over the top, uphill and at dawn, into a blinding sun. Later in the day, we will get the opportunity to see where some of the Leeds Pals were actually billeted. I can't begin to explain how important this trip is.

Anyway, because the cast are mostly students, I wanted to make sure that none of them had to pay a ludicrous amount of money to go on the trip. We are therefore trying to raise about £1000 towards the cost of the coach which is taking us all the way from Leeds to the Somme region and back again.

The NYMT has set up a donations page, which means anyone with a spare ten quid, who agrees that the trip is going to be life-changing for the forty young people who are making it, can throw a bit of money into the pot (and stop me from worrying that I might have to run a bake sale...)

Please only donate an amount that you have to spare. Every penny counts. We will be writing blogs whilst we're down there, and making a few simple films, so as soon as they're up, you'll be able to get a sense of what an amazing thing you've helped to bring to fruition. Here's the link which gives you all the information you'll need about how to donate:

I thank you all, in advance, for your kindness. Have a wonderful weekend and I leave you with a photograph of myself dressed as Livingstone, mostly because I'm like that...

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