Project information

Mousetrap Summer of Theatre

Over the summer holidays we will provide families and young people with opportunities to attend London's fantastic world-class theatre and engage with it in creative ways. These opportunities will be offered to families on low-incomes, families with children with special needs and youth groups.

July 2017 - August 2017

Charity information: Mousetrap Theatre Projects

Mousetrap Theatre Projects logo
  • Need


    1. The cost of London theatre tickets is prohibitive for many London families, plus a sense that it’s ‘not for us’. The recent Warwick Commission report noted that children from low-income families are less likely to experience family engagement in cultural activities.
    2. Outside of term time teenagers need a positive activity to fill their days constructively.
    3. Helping disadvantaged young people to participate in the performing arts when they otherwise wouldn't be able to.


    1. We will offer £6 tickets to a range of London shows to families on low-incomes, reaching them via social service agencies, housing associations etc, plus family workshops to a selection of shows.
    2. We will run our performing arts summer-school for young people aged 13 to 17 who may not otherwise have the opportunity to take part in the performing arts, which includes a theatre trip.
    3. We will run 2 bespoke drama projects with 2 youth groups: a series of drama workshops and theatre trip

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Provide 500 families (approx 1,250 children) with their first theatre experience together.


    » Offer highly subsidised theatre trips to approx 30 shows, at £6 per ticket to families who would not otherwise be able to go.
    » We confirm bookings by phone to every family, supply detailed information on how to get to the theatre, a synopsis of the show, cost of icecream etc.

    We will monitor the take-up in each London borough and conduct a post-project survey of families on their experience.

    Aim 2

    Encouraging future theatregoing as a family and the young people as individuals


    » Each participating family goes onto our database to receive further ticket offers throughout the year to a range of theatre, dance, opera etc.
    » We encourage teenage family members to join our theatregoing club for 15-18 yr olds, to make theatre an ongoing, inspiring part of their lives.

    One of the survey questions asks if their summer theatre trip has encouraged them to attend again. We will monitor take-up where possible of the subsequent theatre offers.

    Aim 3

    Provide a positive activity which develops confidence and broadens horizons.


    » The summer school and youth group projects include a theatre trip to a top show. For many this is their 1st ever theatre experience.
    » The 2-week summer school (different cohort each week) offers drama, dance and music workshops, culminating in a performance for family and friends
    » Run 2 youth group projects, each involving a series of drama workshops over a week or two, using drama to develop key social and personal skills.
    » Working with theatre professionals and the theatre trip is inspiring, opening the young people's minds to life beyond their day to day environment.

    The summer school performance will bear witness to the experience. A post-event online survey will ask for detailed feedback from parents & youth leaders about the benefits.

    Aim 4

    Give disadvantaged young people a sense of acheivement by gaining the Bronze Arts Award qualifcation


    » All summer school participants will be supported through the Bronze Arts Award throughout the week. This is a nationally recognised qualification.

    We aim for 30 out of the 40 participants to pass the Award.

  • Impact


    We recently conducted a longitudinal study of families who participated in our summer theatre programme over the last 10 years, which clearly demonstrated the positive effect it has on their and their children's subsequent arts engagement.

    Our summer school aims to make theatre an enduring part of young people's lives. We will monitor the number of young people subscribing to our independent theatregoing club, which provides £5 tickets to young people, following their time at the school.


    The main risk is that theatre producers might not offer us enough tickets or at a price we can afford. We mitigate this risk by nurturing good relationships with all London's theatre producers, marketing companies and venues.


    We will create written reports summarising the results of the post-project surveys, feedback and our own observations, experience and monitoring.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £62,081

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      Amount Heading Description
      £15,750 Family summer programme 2,250 tickets (minus contribution from families)
      £4,255 Family summer programme Workshop fees (leaders, resources, theatre walking tours, & marketing
      £16,500 Family summer programme Programme Management salaries
      £2,350 Summer school Theatre tickets, resources, planning & Arts Award
      £11,495 Summer school Artistic team fees, programme manager, venue hire, lunches, - minus participant fees
      £1,880 Youth Groups Workshop leader fees, workshop costs, theatre tickets
      £2,851 Youth Groups Programme Manager salary
      £7,000 Support Costs Portion of Mousetrap support costs allocated to this activity
  • Background


    Theatres and drama workshop spaces in central London.


    Summer family theatregoing is for London low-income families.

    Summer school is for young Londoners who have participated in our youth group drama projects in the past year (for disadvantaged young people such as deprived communities, vulnerable, at risk groups, young carers, refugees) and past participants of our summer family theatregoing project.

    2 Youth groups will be chosen to have a drama project in deprived London boroughs.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We have vast amounts of experience, having been running our family summer theatregoing for 18 years, our summer school for 6 years, and our youth groups projects for 9 years. We have superb relationships across the theatre industry enabling us to secure the tickets we need, the support of the theatres and their staff and the expertise of top theatre practitioners to run our workshops.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Elaine Grant

    Programme Manager, responsible for our summer family theatregoing programme

    Jenny Ball

    Programme Manager, responsible for the summer school and the StageXchange programme that feeds into it.

    Ellie Shaw

    Programme Administrator - assisting the above named managers.

It was great to go as a family and see our 3 children enjoying themselves and looking happy!

Mother participant in summer family theatregoing