"If I had to explain the great emotional debt I feel to RicNic, I would have to summarise it into three main areas: support, responsibility and family. RicNic is an organisation that uniquely treads the balance between giving support and letting the young people take control. Never in a RicNic production have I felt patronised, nor ever without support had I needed it. RicNic participants are brought together by a shared enthusiasm for one aspect of theatre. But whether this is backstage, centrestage or anywhere in between, I have time and again seen young people gain experience, self-confidence and ambition by becoming a part of their new extended family". ISABEL: Director, RicNic Oxford 2013
"I had always been interested in theatre but when I was younger I didn’t have much confidence, so it was great having two chorus parts before being confident - and good! - enough to take the lead in Calamity Jane. That was a really amazing month, and there’s no feeling like seeing a packed theatre cheering you on when you’re singing such awesome songs! It was also a really nice way of meeting other people in the area who were into theatre and I think having no adults around made us all feel extra-proud of what we were doing. It was a brilliant thing to do, and I wish I could do it again!" DAISY: former on-stage participant, now studying performing arts at university
"Such is the extent of people’s enjoyment of RicNic, a newfound condition has baffled doctors in and around the Winchester area: ‘Post-RicNic Blues’ – not a term I coined, I can assure you. There is, however, a real sense of deflation as the final curtain goes down. It seems that, although RicNic is solely a summer activity, it is on the minds of many young people all year round. But enough of the post-RicNic dejection, here are the reasons as to why I would recommend RicNic to anybody who is able to join. RicNic is a number of great things: an opportunity for young people to show what they are capable of, by producing, casting, directing, and choreographing their chosen show; a summer activity unlike any other, in that the rehearsal time is intense, but relaxed; a great experience for anyone, regardless of what they want to pursue later on in life; above all, though, RicNic is a fun, worthwhile experience, that allows young people of all backgrounds to work closely together, thereby making a great deal of friends in the process. I recommend it wholeheartedly." ALEX: starred in Hampshire’s 2010 production and directed the 2011 outing
"It's often a phrase that is bandied around too easily, but I have absolutely no hesitation in describing RicNic as a life-changing experience. I can't recommend it too highly" NICK: produced RicNic's 2007 and 2008 Hampshire shows.
Having seen now ten years of their productions I am more than ever convinced that what RicNic does is a very worthy contribution to the education of the young. They have a great deal of fun in the process, they work very hard to achieve first class results, and many of them have told me what a lasting contribution it has made to their lives. Graham Hill: Patron of RicNic Hampshire
I took my thirteen-year-old granddaughter and her friend to see ‘Anything Goes’ in Winchester. It was brilliant… I like that there is no weekly / monthly commitment, so young people who have never been involved in a production before can have a go, and make good use of the doldrum months between exams and the start of the new academic year. Plus the fact that it looks brilliant on your CV, and is a stepping stone to college productions. Well done for making a difference to many young people. Councillor Faith Ponsonby
What do reviewers think?
"A show so staggeringly professional that it questions the expectations of amateur theatre today" Into the Woods
"It is simply astonishing to have acquired this level of serious professional skill and be able to employ it so effortlessly." Calamity Jane
“Explodes with talent ……it has wowed sold-out audiences…. they are professionals to their very core” RicNic Oxford, West Side Story 2012 (Oxford Mail)
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