National Ensemble 2018 – VENT

AN Insightful anthology of storylines dealing with themes connected to mental health including body dysmorphia, abusive relationships, debt and postnatal depression.

Date of Activity: December 2017 – September 2018
Location: Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow
Age Range: 16-25

A figure dressed smartly in shirt and tie sits on an office chair in the middle of a stage under a spotlight. They are circled by a crowd of performers menacingly
Two conga lines of young people face one another and embrace in the middle, laughing and moving in a brightly lit room with wooden floors
Four young people sit on chairs facing one another, with scripts on their lap, smiling and talking. In the background, 3 other figures stand in a circle with arms crossed, talking to one another
Two young men stand in the foreground, dressed in black and white, and look upwards longingly, off left of camera. Multiple figures are in the background holding a white wooden frame
A young woman kneels on the floor next to the bathtub, dressed in black and white, and looks in distress while clutching a baby monitor in both hands

VENT was a piece of contemporary performance blending physical theatre, live soundscapes and an absorbing design from some of Scotland’s most exciting new theatre makers. Under the careful guidance of Director Ross Mackay and inspired by a host of skilled theatre practitioners, the Ensemble tackled a challenging topic that layered raw emotion, visceral energy, pathos and humour.

What if there was a space where you could say what you wanted? Scream as loud as you can, cry your heart out or laugh until it hurts… for 8 minutes. Then you have to return to the world above. What would you do? What would you say? What would you get off your chest and could it change your life forever?

Created by Scottish Youth Theatre’s National Ensemble 2018, the production toured to Glasgow, Dundee, Aberdeen and Edinburgh.

“Watching this made me happy that mental health awareness is on tour around scotland. i suffer from low mood and anxiety and your performances really resonated with me. i took away your support and i am very happy you’re giving mental health sufferers a voice.”

VENT audience member
A cast of performers standing in a cluster on a wooden floor look up at the camera from below, smiling


Alexander Donaldson
Anna Mackay
Bonnie Elliot-Johnson
Calum Ross
Daniel Cawley
Daniel Orejon
Emery Law
Eve Martin
Heather Mitchell
James McElvar
Lauren O’Donnell
Matthew Gallagher
Matthew Jack
Rachel Still
Saul Davidson
Tom Rouvray
Tom Whiston

Creative Team

Alex Bird – Dramaturg
Arran Howie – Dramaturg
Elle Taylor – Lighting Designer & Production Manager
Emma Jayne Park – Movement Director
Fraser Lappin – Designer
Iona Gray – Lead Scenic Artist
Islay Gray – Scenic Artist
Katie Steele – Technical Stage Manager
Nik Paget-Tomlinson – Sound Designer
Ross Mackay – Director
Ruth Green – Carpenter
Suzanne Runciman – Wardrobe Mistress

Supported by
Scottish Children’s Lottery Trust
Culture Business Fund Scotland
Culture & Business Fund Scotland

Richmond Oaks

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