WE EMPOWER AND INSPIRE YOUNG TALENT AND AMBITION. We are open to anyone aged 16 to 25. We find and nurture exceptional productions and present them at the festival. We select the shows we consider the best we have seen, with a true sense of ownership and the ambition fully realised. We spot talented individuals through our selection process and give them the opportunity to build on their experience and learn new skills. We are a bridge between ambition and the world of work and a celebration of young creative and technical talent from around the country.

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  • Productions

    We present outstanding productions made by young theatre makers. Find out more about this year’s 11 shows, picked from across the country by our team of selectors, presented at NSDF 2014, 12-18 April in Scarborough.

  • Festival Company

    We invite outstanding individuals who we have seen and met during the selection process to be a member of the Festival Company. This year the Company had specific workshops by associates from the RSC and others and could book their own choice of workshops during the rest of the week.

  • Workshops

    We programme a wide choice including Voice, Text and Scene Study, Movement, Singing, Dance, Devising, Audition Coaching, Writing for Theatre and Television, Directing and a whole range of Technical workshops.  In 2013 there were 182 workshops delivered by industry professionals including associates from organisations such as RSC, Lyric Hammersmith, Young Vic, Sheffield Theatres, Paines Plough, read more »

  • Technical Team

    The NSDF Technical Director and a team of 10 professionals lead a team of 60 who support the productions, staff venues and build some festival venues from the ground up. The team have workshops on Sound, Lighting, Rigging, Carpentry, Operation of Specialist Equipment and Pyrotechnics and much more besides. The team are appointed to various read more »

  • Management Team

    The Management Team has workshops on Producing, Financial Management, Venue Management, Administration and Logistics. Members of the team are appointed to a variety of positions to run the festival Venues, Workshops and Front of House/Box Office and produce specific events during the festival.

  • Noises Off

    Write, review and stir things up in the festival magazine.

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  • Art as a Vacuum: Write for Noises Off

    The National Student Drama Festival is unique, a place where you put out your work in a risk free environment. There really is no place like it other than the closed doors of the education system. It is a launch pad but I don’t need to list the alumni for you to know this. Its … Continue reading Art as a Vacuum: Write for Noises Off

  • Restricted Words

    It sounds like an extension of Nineteen Eighty-Four or an episode of Black Mirror: a world in which communication has been boiled down to a few carefully selected sentences a day. Walrus Theatre Company’s Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons – just Lemons for short – takes as its basis a laconic dystopia, where every word … Continue reading Restricted Words

  • Authentic Human Communication

    Simon Stephens has become a staple part of the NSDF lineup to the point that I might be so bold as to suggest NSDF wouldn’t be the same without one of his plays in the programme. Originally from Stockport Stephens has been a whirlwind of writing, the last ten years he’s had 15 plays premiering … Continue reading Authentic Human Communication