Leah’s Placement: “What I learnt from Generation Squad”

Fall into place is a wonderfully unique drama company. Sarah Goodyear and Naomi Roxby Wardle run workshops for the community including their intergenerational drama group ‘Generation Squad.’ I went along to Generation Squad and was able to see how different ages come together to share one thing they all love – performing! I wanted to closely look at the positives of community drama and why it’s important for these kinds of theatre groups to get the funding they require.

generation squad community drama group“Different ages come together to share one thing they all love – performing!”

Creative outlets are healthy for the brain; relieving stress and increasing brain function. Generation Squad is an opportunity for people who share an interest in theatre to meet up and have fun. The members have a chance to improvise, play, act, be silly and allow themselves to be free for a few hours a week. Having different ages is really a unique experience and everyone has a chance to learn new things from one another.

This definitely seemed like a happy space and everybody clearly felt welcome. Everyone’s opinion is valued, everyone is equal and everyone laughs the entire way through the rehearsals (it is a comedy play after all). The play is something to work for and be proud of and it is is obvious it means a lot to everyone involved.

Throughout the weeks there was a different warm up to start each session, to find a safe place and to energise the room. Each warm up had a different theme however they all seemed to correspond with having to improvise or imagine. From soundscapes of pubs, to character development, all activities helped people get into a creative headspace for the rest of the session. Week by week the group seemed more comfortable and excited to share and experience the tasks set, and you could really see friendships forming. When characters were set in the play, some would bring in costumes, scripts they’d written or idea’s they’d thought about. Everyone had a sense of ownership over the work, and ideas are given freely throughout.

“You could really see friendships forming”

Being here and witnessing these weeks have been amazing and so helpful for me to see what needs to be considered when doing community work. I noticed that creating a safe place is important so people feel confident within the group. I’m really going to miss my time at Fall Into Place and sincerely hope that they get the funding that they need to carry on making drama for all!

“My poem about Fall Into Place”
Fall into place,
you magical stars,
thank you for welcoming me,
with open arms,
I never thought that uni would send me,
to people so warm and friendly,
developing characters,
barry and bert,
pretending to be drunk,
having a flirt,
I’ll leave with a smile strapped on my face,
cos’ who would have thought I’d fall into place.

All the photos above are taken from “Hair Today” rehearsals, performed in 2018 by Generation Squad.

Read more about Generation Squad drama group.