Manchester kids in care get ‘life-changing’ theatre trip after Christmas campaign

More than 370 children in care have received tickets paid for by the public to see the Snow Queen at a Manchester arts venue this Christmas thanks to a Just Giving campaign.

However, Z-Arts put on the Christmas campaign in the hope of offering almost 800 children, aged 5 to 15, the opportunity to take the festive trip to see the UK premier of their take on the classic Hans Christian Andersen fairytale.

The venue, which focuses on engaging families in the arts, set up the campaign in the hope that the children would have a special outing this Christmas.

Artistic Director Liz O’Neill said: “A lot of looked after children won’t get to experience the same seasonal family activities that other children get.

“For looked after children to miss a show that is written and performed for them would be a huge shame. Together, we can give an amazing gift.”

Manchester poet and playwright, Louise Wallwein, spoke on behalf of the 794 children in the city’s care system, calling for them to be given the opportunity to go on this life-changing trip.

She said: “This version of Snow Queen features characters that are in care and it would be a life-changing moment for looked after children to be given this experience.”

The Z-arts Just Giving campaign has raised more than £2,000, with members of the public buying tickets at £6 per child for the show which runs until this Sunday December 13.

Hans Christian Andersen’s Snow Queen is a modern story where friendship triumphs against the odds as heroes Kai and Gerda come together within the care system.

Wallwein, whose work has been staged at the Sydney Opera House and at the Royal Exchange and Contact theatres in Manchester, was adopted as a child and has first-hand experience of the care system.

She said: “When we went to the theatre we were just a gang of children, but once the lights went down we were taken to another world.”

To support the campaign, click here

Image courtesy of MyLITV, via Youtube, with thanks

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