Take the Lead


Take the Lead is a free employability programme from The Old Vic for students aged 16–18 that uses theatre techniques and creative workshops to build on five core skills: communication, self-management, self-belief, teamwork and problem solving.

This programme is created in collaboration with schools and businesses drawing on The Old Vic’s expertise as a theatrical institution and is specially designed to support young people to take ownership over their next steps after school. Take the Lead is open to any students, not just drama students, and we will work with 20 schools across the year and up to 1,000 KS5 students.


Take the Lead will take place twice across the 2018/2019 academic year.

The first block of dates for 10 schools takes place between Mon 11 February and Fri 29 March. Each school can apply for two places on the programme working with a maximum of 50 KS5 students across the two groups. The programme will continue over June and July, working with a further 10 schools.


Selected schools will take part over three modules hosted at their school with an additional welcome event at the beginning of the project hosted by The Old Vic. Each module will take place over one day – working with one group in the morning, and the other in the afternoon.

  • Curtain Up – a two hour welcome event hosted by The Old Vic
  • Learn Your Part – half day workshop for each group of 25 students at your school
  • Build Your Company –half day workshop for each group of 25 students at your school
  • Take to the Stage – half day workshop for each group of 25 students at your school
  • Curtain Call – an interactive assembly held at your school for all 50 students to share their learning with the wider school community
  • Students will also be supported by a Prompt Book, an additional learning resource
  • Teachers will be further supported via a Meet and Greet and CPD session as well as a teaching resource pack
  • Selected schools will receive free tickets to bring their groups to an Old Vic production


  • This programme is designed for KS5 students studying any subject and students do not have to be studying drama
  • Applications are open to all secondary state schools based within the M25
  • The programme is offered free of charge


Applications for the summer dates will open later in the year. Schools involved in the first round of the programme are welcome to reapply for the second round.

Please get in touch if you have any questions about access requirements.

Please email: takethelead@oldvictheatre.com if you have any questions.



In association with

CVC Foundation

Generously supported by
John Lyon’s Charity, CHK Charities Limited, The Leathersellers’ Company Charitable Fund and The HW Sanderson Art in Industry Fund