All stories leave a shadow in the places we call home. It’s up to us to find them and give them a voice.

Empowering young people to tell the stories that matter to them, Icon Theatre and Applied Stories are working with Sheppey young people to discover local histories and reimagine them with elements of magic and fantasy. Together they will co-create audio dramas that blur the lines between true events and imagination.

The stories will be brought to life through a series of storytelling workshops led by Applied Stories founder and Artistic Director, Fin Kennedy. An award-winning playwright and former Artistic Director of touring theatre company Tamasha, Fin brings 20 years’ experience across professional and participatory theatre, BBC Radio and independent podcasts.

Sheppey Shadows is a unique opportunity for young people to create with an acclaimed playwright. Guided by Fin, students from Minster-In-Sheppey Primary, Queenborough School and Theatre31 Youth Theatre (Sheppey), will be introduced to the world of scriptwriting, and learn how to create plot, characters and dialogue.

The young people will create a play in three parts, with each group taking responsibility for either the beginning, middle or end. As well as voices, these stories will be brought to life with ambient sounds recorded around the Island. Once the script is complete, the young people will work with Applied Stories alongside a professional director and voice actors to record the play.

The project will be celebrated at a free listening party in Sheerness where everyone is invited to listen to Sheppey Shadows and share their own stories inspired by the island accompanied by free refreshments. Date to be announced in June 2022.

After the event, the young people’s audio-dramas will be available as a podcast on Icon Theatre’s website.

Sheppey Shadows has been made possible thanks to funding awarded by Kent Community Foundation from the Arts Council’s Let’s Create Jubilee Fund


Sheppey Shadows is an Applied Stories project.
Co-created with Queenborough School, Minster-In-Sheppey Primary School and Theatre31 Youth Theatre. Commissioned by Icon Theatre.

Funded by the Let’s Create Jubilee Fund, made possible thanks to National Lottery players and administered by UK Community Foundations on behalf of the Arts Council.

'Icon has been ahead of the curve in understanding that the arts have a role to play in bringing people together, helping them be heard by telling their own stories in their own way, and in the process creating a sense of pride in place and space.'
— Lyn Gardner, Theatre Journalist
‘Icon Theatre has given me new friends, taught me new skills and challenged my lack of self-belief’
— Community Performer
‘It has been lifechanging. Lady Unchained has helped get my life changed, I’ve started to look for opportunities on the outside, and see that there is life after prison.’
— Young Artist, Cookham Wood Young People’s Theatre Programme
78% of the participating young people said they were more confident and had more friends as a result of the project
— Six Ways To Wellbeing, young people's wellbeing project
★★★★ ‘A sharp, impeccably performed and blazingly impassioned piece of theatre…simply terrific.’
— The Times
★★★★ ‘It is easy to take for granted the acting skills of a top theatre company. But when actors embody characters as superbly as this, you can’t help but notice.’
— The New Statesman

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