Students perform with local theatre company - MK College

Performing Arts students work with local theatre company 

A group of students from Milton Keynes College recently worked with a local theatre company to perform a play about unsung football heroes. 

The learners, who are currently studying Level 2 and Level 3 Performing Arts at the College, worked with the Pepper’s Ghost Theatre Company on “Not A Game for Girls”, which was performed over four nights at the Stantonbury Theatre. Pepper’s Ghost kindly offered to fund and produce this play for the Performing Arts students’ work experience placements. 

“Not A Game For Girls” by Benjamin Peel tells the dramatic story of the Dick, Kerr’s Ladies – one of the most famous and successful women’s football teams during the First World War – so popular that the Football Association tried to ban them. 

Using a mixture of real life and fictional characters and blending drama, songs and choreographed games, “Not A Game For Girls” captures the spirit and camaraderie that led the Dick, Kerr’s Ladies to ignore the prevailing social attitudes and prove most emphatically that they were wrong to dismiss football as “Not A Game For Girls”. 

Pepper’s Ghost is the community arm of professional theatre company The Play’s The Thing, which has a long history of offering opportunities to MK College’s Performing Arts students. This includes making six films with MK College students in 2020, facilitating an exhibition of students’ work at MK Gallery in 2021, supporting students in working with the Haste Theatre Company on a devised piece for a prestigious festival at MK Gallery and offering free performances and a workshop of the then touring show “Hidden Stories” about miscarriages of justice. 

Colin Bloxham, Course Team Leader of Performing Arts at Milton Keynes College, said: “It is with great pleasure that we acknowledge the collaboration between our learners and Pepper’s Ghost Theatre Company on this remarkable production. The opportunity to accrue Performing Arts work experience hours is a rare and valuable one, and we consider ourselves fortunate to have had Rosemary’s support in securing these hours for our committed learners. Consequently, our students have acquired a substantial amount of experience in the local theatre industry, which I’m sure will enhance their essential employment and performance skills, preparing them for the broader acting profession. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Rosemary for her invaluable contribution.” 

Chelsea Nathan, one of the students from Milton Keynes College involved in the project, commented: “I have enjoyed working with Rosemary and it has been a great experience of learning about the professional standard in a community theatre company. The experience feels very professional and from this process, I have learnt to accept constructive feedback as this was something that I struggled with. It has been very fun getting to know the rest of the crew and gaining a strong professional working relationship to ensure we create a fantastic production for audiences around Milton Keynes”. 

Rosemary Hill, Director and Producer of the Pepper’s Ghost Theatre Company, added: “It has been an incredible journey working with the students over twelve weeks to produce this heartwarming play. It has been very rewarding to see how the students have grown in confidence, skill, knowledge and resilience as we have progressed. It’s also been wonderful to see how the students have really warmed to this story and owned it. They have seen the importance of not erasing women from history!” 

To find out more about Performing Arts at Milton Keynes College, click here