Just Say Yes!- Taking Chances by Katie Fegan, 17

A million decisions are made every day, and most of these we take for granted. We choose what to eat for breakfast, the clothes we’re going to wear and the general plan for accomplishing whatever short term goals we have recently set out for ourselves. I guess you wouldn’t call these things ‘opportunities’. But, the choices we make can sometimes lead to something bigger, and during my time at Love Drama I have seen this happen time and time again. The group has been presented with so many amazing opportunities, and all this started from something small.

'One Day' Glasgow 2012

Love Drama 12-16s in Glasgow for the One Day event

I guess the first opportunity that any Love Drama member ever took was joining the group in the first place. We all took the chance to get involved in something we loved, perhaps worried that we would be cast aside as an outsider and not learn anything. But, of course, in each year group amazing friendships have been made and everyone has wonderful memories of the group, whether they have been there for 5 years or 5 weeks. I could write a whole blog listing the inside jokes that I have with my friends from Love Drama…but hardly anyone would understand our, frankly, bizarre sense of humour! I think I speak for the majority of the group when I say that having the chance to meet new people is a life changing thing in itself, as new friendships can be formed that may last forever!
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A typical Love Drama class with everyone laughing their heads off.

Over time the pupils’ skills develop. The group grows in confidence and want to showcase what they have  learnt to the world. What better place to do that than National Theatre of Scotland’s Five Minute Theatre? A chance to perform and get ideas across within a short time frame, and it would be broadcast online! The 12-16 group first took that chance and broadcast a group piece on the theme of ‘protest’, then a further 4 pieces on the theme of ‘youth’. In the grand scheme of things this was quite a small decision. It was the chance to showcase our abilities as performers and also get our voices heard. Well, let’s just say that we were heard loud and clear, and I’m so happy to hear that Love Drama have applied to take part again this year. It seemed that after this a whole world of possibilities opened up.

Above: This performance was recorded AND broadcast LIVE FROM the Bongo Club in Edinburgh.

Below: One of the group’s pre-recorded Five Minute Theatre pieces ‘Facebook: A Problem or Not?’

Soon after Five Minute Theatre another opportunity comes up. The 12-16 group were offered the chance to perform at Young Scot’s One Day event at the Glasgow Concert Hall! It was the chance for the group to get outside their usual space and perform to the general public of Glasgow. Needless to say the whole group were beside themselves with excitement and that there was no way we would let this opportunity pass us by. We had an amazing time and learnt a lot about the work that the Young Scot organisation were doing for the youth of Scotland. It was not only a great place to practice our performing but it was such an inspiring event…leading me on nicely to one of my proudest moments at Love Drama- ‘Truth About Youth’– the song.

Video Below: Katie’s completed music video kindly recorded and edited by YOUNG SCOT.

Now, I’ve written an entire blog on this before so I won’t go into too much detail, but I wrote a song that I thought could be used at the end of a drama showcase, a song that was inspired by the One Day event. Instead, Young Scot wanted to record it and make a music video! I was so nervous about going ahead, and was also warned by friends and family that it would be a lot of pressure and that maybe I should forget about it and just give up then and there. In spite of these initial anxieties I said yes, and, although at times I wanted to pull my hair out and give in, it was one of the best moments of my life! I don’t want to think about what would have happened if I had turned that down. Although I haven’t really written anything since, I now know that I have the ability to write and perform a good piece of music that can get everyone up and singing! I’m sure all of my friends are sick to death of hearing me go on and on about it (I mean, it was 9 months ago), but I’m not doing this to brag. I go on about it because I can’t believe I pulled it off! It also led to people coming up to me in school saying things like “Hey…you write songs…fancy writing one for me to play my boyfriend/girlfriend/self on Valentine’s Day?”, so doing that earned me a bit of cash and recognition. Also, this blog was discovered by an English teacher in my school, who asked me to write an article for the school newspaper. This happened a year ago…and it was never actually published by it was still a good feeling to be asked to do some more writing work, as this is something I really enjoy. The group each submitted clips of them doing something they enjoyed as part of the video, and I was pleasantly shocked to see a really good stop motion animation in the video. Turns out this wonderful work was done by 12-16 member, Hamish, and he was then head-hunted to work on an animation for Young Scot! I felt immensely proud. He is really talented and I’m sure his work will be amazing.

Video below: Hamish’s wonderful stop-animation. No wonder he was head-hunted!

The group have been in a number of other videos too. Award winning director and film maker, Keir Greatorex, very kindly filmed the group in action and conducted interviews with some of the group members, asking what made Love Drama so special to us. He did an amazing job and this video was used to promote the great work of the company. We have also been interviewed by Young Scot on our time at the One Day event, Love Drama and how we felt the youth of today are perceived by society. We were able to endorse both the work of Love Drama and Young Scot, and also share our thoughts on important issues. We had never been interviewed before, so it was very exciting and brilliant to hear that people wanted to hear our opinions (though I look AWFUL in that interview!! I can’t believe I used to never wear make-up).

Video below: The group are interviewed by YOUNG SCOT.

Speaking of looking good on camera, we also have some models in our midst! Former pupils, now tutors, Sunny and Abbie, had the chance to be on a photo shoot for Young Scot (jealous). I’ve not personally seen these photos, but I’m sure the camera loved them and them it!  12-16 pupil, Laurie, has been in a music video (Low Winter Sun by The Dark Jokes), James has appeared in the latest Five Minute Theatre trailer, the list goes on!

Above: Love Drama veteran Laurie stars in the music video for The dark Jokes.

Below: Love Drama’s James features in the National Theatre of Scotland’s trailer for Five Minute Theatre 2014.

It’s amazing to think that this long list of achievements started from just walking into a room full of strangers, sitting down in a circle and having Kirsten introduce herself and welcome you to Love Drama. The group started out small, but now it’s expanding fast! All of this is the result of people seizing opportunities to become the great people they know inside that they can be. We can’t just say no to an opportunity just because we feel we can’t succeed. If everyone did that we would have nothing to be truly proud of! Imagine if none of us took any opportunity we had been given. I wouldn’t be sitting down at a computer writing this, and there would be no one to write it for!

Video below about Love Drama by Keir Greatorex

At different points in our lives we will take risks; in love, our careers, our general future. But, if we are successful we will look back on the risks we have taken and give ourselves a pat on the back, and if we weren’t we learn from it. So I say, if you want something and you’re given a chance to make it happen, grab onto it and don’t let go! Never hold back because you feel incompetent. Sure, it may not go exactly as you thought it would, but at least you can say you tried, and feel proud that you didn’t let an amazing opportunity pass you by.

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Katie jumping for joy in a Love Drama comedy masterclass!

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