James Nesbitt Announced As Patron For Bright Young Things

James Nesbitt by Pip

James Nesbitt The Missing star is to become patron of Bright Young Things as the drama school for young people celebrates its leading role in the arts in Northern Ireland.

Lisa Duffy, Founder of Bright Young Things which has drama schools in Belfast and Magherafelt said:“James Nesbitt has shown a tremendous interest in the arts in Northern Ireland. Bright Young Things has non-selective admission, every child and young person is welcome regardless of their ability. This is our ethos and James Nesbitt strongly supports our belief.”

Lisa Duffy continues: “We are delighted to announce James Nesbitt as our patron, especially at this time when funding to the arts is under threat by Stormont. Drama for young people nurtures confidence, teaches children how to communicate effectively and ignites their creativity. Instilling these qualities in our young people, helping the future generation develop skills to carry them effectively through life, is core to BYT ethos. James Nesbitt recognizes the value of BYT and what we stand for and it is an honour that he has formally announced this ambassador role with Bright Young Things.”

James Nesbitt said: “Supporting drama for young people is close to my heart. I loved my time growing up in Northern Ireland doing youth drama, that is where it all began for me. I am delighted becoming a patron for BYT. It’s wonderful to be part of a dynamic organisation committed to fostering confidence, communication and creative expression in our young people.

James Nesbitt continues: “I have recently urged NI Executive to implement no more cuts to the arts sector, by supporting Art Council for Northern Ireland’s campaign. I’ve now taken my support one step further by becoming patron of Bright Young Things to demonstrate my commitment to arts sector and young people in Northern Ireland.”

BYT Belfast, which recently celebrated a move to Crescents Arts Centre and its Magherafelt drama school, are now enrolling ages 3-18 years for spring term which starts January.

Emma Tolland, parent of Archie 5 and Ruby 3, who both attend classes at BYT Belfast was so impressed by the drama school, she encouraged Archie’s school, Campbell College Prep to introduce the BYT after schools drama programme.

The “BYT effect” as Emma Tolland calls it said: “Choosing the right activities for your kids can be tricky. There is so much on offer. BYT is very different to many other children’s drama groups for so many reasons. It’s about the journey towards a genuine love of theatre, not a “jazz hands” approach to performance. The staff at BYT are what make it so special, and the kids really look up to them”

James Nesbitt’s announcement as patron of Bright Young Things further demonstrates his unwavering commitment in support of our arts sector and in particular youth drama, where it all began for him.

James Nesbitt was the first famous voice to add support to an Arts Council campaign demanding that Stormont stops severe cuts to Northern Ireland’s arts sector.

James Nesbitt recently said: “Without the arts, we’re just left with politics and we don’t want that,” as he smiled.

Parent and Headmistress, Emer Hughes knows first-hand how important drama is for our young people, she said: “Over the last 4 years I have watched my daughter grow in personality, self-confidence and competence having attended BYT. She relished any opportunity to become involved with people and faces new situations with assurance and ease. Having been part of BYT has definitely added value to Ciara’s creativity. Ciara has achieved Distinction in a group LAMDA Exam and has also appeared in a mini movie. The BYT have encouraged Ciara over the years to strive to be her best – nothing is impossible – you can reach for the stars!”


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