National Ensemble 2020 – Once You See the Smoke

A Digital reimagining FOR a radical new online performance.

Date of Activity: January – July 2020
Location: Across Scotland, Online
Age Range: 18-25

The Scottish Youth Theatre National Ensemble is a national touring model for young artists and theatremakers interested in making interdisciplinary artform, political theatre. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 National Ensemble cancelled their national tour, instead staying safely at home to create a new site-specific work for the virtual realm through Zoom.

This new piece of live digital-theatre responded to issues surrounding global climate change and climate justice, and was shared with audiences online on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of July.

“We had begun to spin ideas for a new devised show about climate justice when lockdown happened and we found ourselves separated from each other and unsure how to collaborate whilst the company was spread up and down the country. I AM SO PROUD OF THE NATIONAL ENSEMBLE COMPANY 2020.”

Melanie Jordan, Director

“I was astounded at the integrity of the Ensemble and Creative Team as they turned their creativity to exploiting every facet of the Zoom platform as a site-specific space. Knowing the 20-strong Ensemble were all performing live in separate locations across Scotland to audiences across the world made it all the more exhilarating to watch.”

Jacky Hardacre, Chief Executive
Hear a little from each of the Ensemble members about their collaborative process and what they most enjoy about making the production.


Abby Ferguson
Ava Hickey
Bailey McDermott
Bronwyn Dickson
Calum Philp
Chelsea Grace
Christina Craven
Esther Steed
Gemma Legan
Gregor MacRae
Gregor Kennedy
Hannah Nimmo
James Lyon
Kristian Lustre
Leon Ellis
Rebecca Tierney
Sean Patrick McNamara
Sophie Keenan
Victoria Kennedy
William Byam Shaw

Creative Team

Melanie Jordan – Director
Patricia Panther – Sound Composer
Adam Bowers – Digital Stage Manager
Laura Hawkins – Lighting Consultant

Supported by
The Mackintosh Foundation
Scottish Children’s Lottery Trust

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