National Theatre Connections

De Warenne Academy will be performing Variations by Katie Hims at the CAST Theatre on Wednesday 3rd April at 7:15pm as part of National Theatre Connectionsa nationwide celebration of new plays for young people.

Variations is one of ten brand new plays written especially for Connections by a selection of the best playwriting talent in the UK. Thirteen-year-old Alice wishes her life was completely different. She wakes up one morning to find that her life is different. In fact, it's so different that all she wants to do is get back to normality. But how does she do that?National Theatre Connections is one of the UK’s largest celebrations of youth theatre. Plays are commissioned for and about young people, from some of the best contemporary playwrights, and performed by schools and youth theatres all over the UK and Ireland. Young people have the opportunity to get involved in all aspects of creating and staging the play both on and offstage, from set design to costume, lighting and stage management.

In 2019, National Theatre Connections is working with up to 300 youth theatres and schools to stage ten newly commissioned plays, adding to the 150 + plays the National Theatre have commissioned for young people since 1995. All the companies will transfer their production to one of 30 Connections Partner Theatres across the UK.                                                            

Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre, said:“Connections is at the heart of the National Theatre’s work for young people, built on the belief that young people in every corner of the UK should have the opportunity to experience and take part in theatre. We’re so excited to welcome new and returning youth theatre companies and schools to take part in Connections this year. All participants are invited to get involved with every aspect of theatre-making and have the chance to premiere a brand new play in a leading regional theatre”.

Scott Willis, Executive Producer said “We are incredibly excited to be performing as part of the National Theatre connections programme. The play is a perfect fit for our talented students and is not to be missed.”

To book to see De Warenne Academy perform Variations at the De Warenne Academy Theatre on Wednesday 3rd April – contact the box office:

For further information, contact De Warenne Academy or to find out more about National Theatre Connections, visit

Suitable for ages: All Ages however producers recommend 7+

Notes to editors

  • National Theatre Connections is kindly supported by The Mohn Westlake Foundation,The Buffini Chao Foundation, Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, Delta Air Lines, Jacqueline and Richard Worswick, Mactaggart Third Fund,The EBM Charitable Trust, Samantha and Richard Campbell-Breeden, The Garvey Family Trust, Susan Miller and Byron Grote, Anthony P. Skyrme, The Derrill Allatt Foundation, Hays Travel Foundation, Faithorn Farrell Timms and supporters of the Connections Appeal. The National Theatre's Partner for Learning is Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
  • National Theatre Connections is an annual event, this year, it will involve 300 young theatre groups and 30 leading Partner Theatres from across the UK and Ireland.
  • More information on the National Theatre Connections programme can be found at