NEWS: Sheffield Theatres Presents The First International Student Drama Festival

Sheffield Theatres becomes home to the first ever International Student Drama Festival from Friday 22 – Saturday 30 June, as the National Student Drama Festival (NSDF) goes global to celebrate the 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

Co-produced by NSDF and Sheffield Theatres, in association with the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University, this nine-day festival brings together the brightest and best new theatre-makers from across the world to perform a range of live theatre, workshops and late night entertainment.  Ten international student shows, from countries as far afield as Iran, Zimbabwe, Georgia, Japan and America, will join ten ground-breaking UK student shows selected by the ISDF team in this celebration of worldwide student theatre.

Judging the student productions are local award-winning playwright, John Godber,  award-winning American actor Richard Schiff (Toby Ziegler in the West Wing) and Malaysian actress, writer and director Rani Moorthy (Handful of Henna, Children’s Theatre Festival), chaired by writer, Professor and NSDF Board member, Robert Hewison.

Alongside the shows will be 200 cutting-edge workshops and discussions from world leading theatre companies, drama schools and technicians exploring topics from acting, writing, devising and directing to design, lighting, sound, costume, puppetry, choreography, and stage fighting.  Companies leading the workshops include the LAMDA, Menier Chocolate Factory, Old Vic Tunnels, Royal Shakespeare Company, The Sunday Times and locally-based companies Slung Low and Forced Entertainment.

Completing the activity, a festival newspaper will be published every morning, to which anyone can submit reviews and articles on work they have seen, as well as a daily discussion.  There will also be competitions, the opportunity to audition for drama school, free head shot photo sessions, and the chance to win work experience placements and cash prizes for forthcoming productions.

Anyone aged 16 years and over can take part in this unique festival, and Yorkshire students have the opportunity to attend for free with help from the Foundation of Sport and Arts who have paid for 200 3-day festival tickets.  Students may apply independently for the free tickets or teachers may apply for up to ten free tickets per school byMonday 4 June.  Applicants will know if they have been successful by Monday 11 June.  For more information, terms and conditions and to apply visit

Sheffield Theatres Chief Executive, Dan Bates said: ‘A big part of our work at Sheffield Theatres is discovering, nurturing and developing new talent so we are very excited to be hosting the first and only International Student Drama Festival as part of the Cultural Olympiad.  It’s also great for the city to be hosting another prestigious, high-profile event and we look forward to welcoming the hundreds of international students, visiting artists and companies through our doors.’

NSDF Director, Holly Kendrick added: ‘We are all incredibly excited about this year’s ISDF 2012 Festival as it’s shaping up to be an extraordinary event.  Those who buy a ticket can expect to see some exceptional shows chosen from around the UK and all over the world, as well as take part in workshops and advice sessions from some of the world’s leading theatre companies and drama schools.  We are also truly thrilled that through the support of the Foundation of Sports and Arts and with the help of London 2012, we are able to offer 200 free tickets to this year’s International Student Drama Festival which will be allocated to young people in Yorkshire who have never been before.’

The full festival runs for 9 days and there are 9, 6, 3 and 1 day tickets available which entitles you to see all the shows and workshops on those days.  For more information and to book visit:

Single event tickets are available for just £5.00 and can be purchased from Sheffield Theatres’ Box Office in-person, by phone on 0114 249 6000 or online at

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