A DRAMATIC week at the Barn Theatre in Welwyn Garden City came to an exciting finale.

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Spirits were high and the young audience erupted with screams of delight as the winners of the 68th WGC Youth Drama Festival (WGCYDF) were announced at last Saturday evening’s award ceremony.

The senior’s Youth Committee Cup went to Phoenix Youth Theatre’s production of Red by Lauren Lindores.

The junior first prize – and Elizabeth Cory-Wright Cup – went to Dramawise’s version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare.

Trophies were presented by Welwyn Hatfield Times editor Terry Mitchinson, who revealed his own involvement in the festival as a young boy in 1970 with a team from Monk’s Walk School.

He played Arthur in Thornton Wilder’s The Happy Journey.

Terry was presented with a programme from that year and was amused to point out that it was priced at one shilling.

Welwyn Hatfield mayor Carl Storer and his wife also attended the festival at the Handside Lane theatre on the penultimate night.

Seventeen teams from schools, drama youth groups and theatre companies performed a selection of material for well-attended audiences throughout the week-long festival.

Adjudicator Ben Humphrey summed up the event as being one of the best organised drama festivals he has attended and WGC should be proud of its youth culture.

The festival is run entirely by volunteers and chairman Coral Walton praised the efforts of the WGCYDF committee for their hard work this year, in particular for promoting the festival in its new March slot at the Barn Theatre.

Derek Palmer, Brenda Onyon and James Rowles were, as ever, magnificent in technically assisting the team leaders to realise their intentions.

The 69th festival will run from March 4-9, 2013.

Enquiries through wgcydf@gmail.com or from the festival’s website at www.wgcydf.org

68th Festival Results

* Senior first – Youth Committee Cup – Phoenix Youth Theatre (WGC) ‘Red ‘ by Lauren Lindores.

* Senior second – Nero’s Cup – FactSimile (Richard Hale School, Hertford) ‘Broken Britain’ (devised).

* Senior third – Annand Cup – Stagecoach Dramatroupe Seniors (Stevenage & Letchworth) ‘The Tin Can People’ by Edward Bond.

* Junior first – Elizabeth Cory-Wright Cup – Dramawise (Sawston) ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ by William Shakespeare.

* Junior second – Hinton Cup – JCoSS (Barnet) ‘We’ll be Home Tomorrow’ by Wayne Denfhy.

* Junior third –The Louis Davis Cup – Stagecoach Dramatroupe Juniors (Stevenage & Letchworth) ‘Alive or Dead’ (devised).

* Technical award – Ball-England Cup – Phoenix Youth Theatre (WGC) ‘Red ‘ by Lauren Lindores.

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