For the Best

Winner of the TMA Theatre Award for Best Show for Children and Young People of 2009

Download For the Best Evaluation Report – 1.9mb

http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2011/jul/12/lee-hall-beached-community-theatre

For the Best  was developed with families and communities in Liverpool and presented in association with Culture Liverpool, Unity Theatre and Royal Liverpool University Hospital in November 2010 with support from the Wellcome Trust and Culture Liverpool.

“Being on dialysis is like having a second family, a haemo family. It is like being in a washing machine. Your blood is put through a four hour rinse cycle and you come out squeaky clean. It can also drive you mad. I am a tiger; a roaring, angry, shouting tiger. Being on dialysis means you can get bored out of your skull, but a wandering mind can travel for miles and miles and miles and there are no limits to the imagination. It’s difficult being a princess when you’re often sick”.

For the Best was an imaginative and creative exploration of a family’s experience of living with renal disease inspired by and created with the children in the Dialysis Unit at Evelina Hospital. It was funded by The Wellcome Trust as part of their strategy to increase public engagement with biomedical issues. The project was complex and layered and Anna’s role was to build strong partnerships across multiple agencies, the Evelina hospital School, two other London primary schools, medical professionals, funding bodies, staff at the Unicorn Theatre, the artist and cast team, and the children and their families at Evelina Hospital.

Developed over nine months from September 2008 – June 2009 with Mark Storor as artist in residence at the Dialysis Unit of Evelina Children’s Hospital School. Mark worked with young people, teachers, parents, primary school children, artists and performers and For The Best explored how individual testimony can be the starting point for making theatre which articulates and captures the essence of children’s experiences. The aesthetic, rhythm and sound of the work was inspired by and infused with the voices of the children in the hospital school. It was interpreted and performed by artists, performers and children from Charles Dickens Primary School (Southwark) and Worple Primary School (Hounslow).

Conceived by Mark Storor and produced by educationalist Anna Ledgard. Funded by a Wellcome Trust Award. Supported by the Hedley Foundation.