Death of the American Teenager

Policymakers debate arming teachers. Parents buy bulletproof backpacks. So many adult Americans fret over a generation of students raised to know the run-hide-fight of active shooter drills. But as the body count only grows in America's deepening crisis of mass shootings, we need to hear from the children who are growing up in the shadow of gun violence. Whether or not they know what it feels like to carry a bulletproof backpack, they know intimately the weight of fear and of anger – of wondering whether they might be next.

 

Youth Theatre's Conservatory program wrote this show for the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland in the summer of 2019. The scenes and song lyrics were created from work done in the classroom. Through improvisation, movement exercises, and writing workshops, the students collected a lot of scenes and monologues that were edited down by their director, Penny Caywood.

REVIEWS

  • https://www.britishtheatreguide.info/reviews/death-of-the-am-space-triplex-17894
  • "It was the best show I saw at the fringe this year and I saw many great shows.  It is such an important message at such an important time.  Entertaining an audience is important but I believe that theatre is at its best when it informs, moves, says something about our society and asks it’s audience members to think.  I was so moved (I cried for hours) by what you and your actors created.  WOW!  Congrats again to you and your actors." Russ Wendt, Florida HS Theatre Teacher

WHAT YOU CAN DO

For US citizens, contacting your representative is easy and one of the best ways to show your support for gun control. Call your U.S. Senators and Representative via the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and let them know you support federal gun control and that you oppose legislation that would deregulate or increase gun sales. Demand that they advocate for effective gun violence legislation.

For both US and Non-US citizens, donating to gun reform organizations is a great way to help. Your money helps organize protests, pay anti-gun lobbyists, and educate people about gun violence. You can find your states gun control organization through https://ceasefireusa.org/ by going to the “Our Affiliates” tab, but there are countless gun control organizations, each with their own tactics and goals. See the LINKS tab for more organizations.

You can also host an informative evening of action and debate to open up a dialogue about the importance of gun control and get friends and family involved in change. Below is a step by step how-to guide courtesy of the Violence Policy Center. http://vpc.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Evening-of-Info-Action-10-28-16.pdf

The best way to show your support (as an American citizen) for gun reform is with your vote.

https://gvpc.org/ -- Gun Violence protection center of Utah
https://ceasefireusa.org/ -- Ceasefire USA
https://marchforourlives.com/ -- March for our Lives
https://www.csgv.org -- The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence
https://www.bradyunited.org/donate -- The Brady Campaign
http://vpc.org/ -- Violence Policy Center
https://www.neveragain.com/gun-control/ -- Never Again
https://momsdemandaction.org/ -- Moms Demand Action

Youth Theatre's Conservatory is an award-winning training program for high school actors. It is open to students who want to take their work to the next level. Conservatory competes in state and national competitions and hosts master classes with guest artists from across the nation.

Although these young people are very talented, it is more important that they become great ensemble members that are generous on stage and off. These students make lasting friendships that go beyond the stage and Youth Theatre.

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