Forest Forge Theatre and has been producing theatre and arts projects for the local communities for over 35 years. We aim to engage, inspire and transform communities with our work as well as to entertain and educate.
Here is a selection of our work from 2017!
Forest Forge Youth Theatre
What people don’t realise is the wealth of activity that happens every week at our theatre in Ringwood. Up to 145 young people between the ages of 6 and 21 access weekly workshops as part of our Youth Theatre. Theatre skills such as performance, improvisation, and physical theatre are at the heart of what we do, and each group get the chance to perform a show in our theatre annually. Alongside this we regularly create site specific and street theatre pieces, which tend to be full of fun and anarchy!
Forest Forge Act Your Age
Act Your Age is our lively weekly drama group for adults up into their 80’s. Using games and theatre skills the group is inspired, uplifted and challenged to create and devise theatre. Improved wellbeing physically and mentally and isolation are all beneficial outcomes of being part of Act Your Age. They explore storytelling, character, movement and improvisation in a safe, supportive and most importantly, fun and friendly setting.
The New Forest Arts Festival
As part of The New Forest Arts Festival 2017 our Youth Theatre and Act Your Age groups combined to perform ‘The Crucible’ at Rhinefield Blackwater Arboretum.
We also supported Tall Tree Theatre for their production of ‘Shackleton’, which was performed at Forest Forge Theatre and then went on to tour nurseries and schools.
During the New Forest Arts Festival 2017 we created a Travelling Tree of Life, which toured to various New Forest locations offering people the chance to add their own comments about the forest to leaves of the tree. We also worked with two established professional playwrights, Deborah Gearing and Paul Hewitt, who took up residence in the Observatory at Buckler’s Hard in Beaulieu.
This led on to the writing of a new play ‘It’s In The Trees’, which was performed in Lyndhurst at the Verderers Court to celebrate the 800 Tree Charter of the forest. Performed by Downton Abbey star Phoebe Sparrow.
Forest Forge Christmas Show
Every year Forest Forge co-produces a Christmas show with Bumblefly Theatre.
The show tours around Hampshire, Dorset and Wiltshire during December and January. Venues include schools, community centres, village halls, and arts centres including Hanger Farm. 2017-18’s show was The Frog Prince!
The Local Community
Forest Forge always takes part in the Ringwood Carnival. Which brings the Youth Theatre and Act Your Age together within the community.
One of our community projects is called Hidden Identities, where we work with the travelling community in Blackfield on the Waterside running drama sessions.
Forest Forge as a venue
At Forest Forge we also programme music, theatre, dance and poetry at our theatre in Ringwood.
In October 2017 alone we had ‘Ride!’, a play written by award-winning writer John Foster, ‘Defender of the Dead’ by Boiling Kettle Theatre, and ‘His Way’, a Frank Sinatra story.
We worked with 20 young people from various local secondary schools to produce thought-provoking performances, Elevate was about consent and toured to 1800 young people at schools in the local area.
Find out what Forest Forge has in store for 2018 on our What’s On page. Inspired to take part? Consider joining our Act Your Age adult theatre group or the Forest Forge Youth Theatre for ages 6-21. If you would like to support Forest Forge Theatre Company and the work we do you can donate here.