START 10 Years

In December 2016 the Lyric celebrated a decade of running our START programme.

START is a targeted programme for young people out of training, education or employment. The Lyric works with local statutory bodies to refer the most hard-to-reach young people who need a programme to shake up their life, and make a positive change. For 6-weeks the young people learn theatre techniques and form an ensemble which results in increased confidence, soft-skills, improved communication and more tools to enable them to re-engage in employment or training.

The START 10 year celebration saw previous and current staff, participants and funders fill the main auditorium to watch a sharing of work by START participants, and hear some wonderful stories of what previous participants have achieved since.

Previous START participant Shanice wrote and performed this poem:

Fear…..That’s what they thought it would be, Fear.

Had I not chosen to start a new life I’d probably not be here today. You see growing up in a council house with five other siblings and being the eyes of domestic violence yeah that was definitely fear, never had I thought in the world that I would be a victim of it.

From late nights to phone calls, sirens and hospitals, manipulation domination accusation I was oblivious. See I was the type of female who thought they knew it all from leaving home at fifteen the world was my oyster. I mean sure I could have studied and became a doctor or a nurse but resulted in alcohol and parties as a reliever from stress. Time for a new change and a new START!

A programme which allowed me to express my abilities which saw no failure but to notice my substantiality. I had a voice my confidence grew we weren’t just friends here we were a family too from performing stories and playing games to recording music and making a change. I felt inspired, to not only meet wonderful people but to build a foundation to support this creation.


The evening raised funds to ensure that the Lyric can continue START for the next decade. If you would like to find out more about the programme or support START please contact

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