YMT blog

Joshua Tonks - YMT Alumni - Youth Music Theatre UK

An interview with Joshua Tonks


We chat to actor and writer Joshua Tonks about his YMT experience and his favourite shows!

Josh graduated from Arts Ed and has starred as Rolf in The Sound of Music at the Open Air Theatre Regent's Park and in The Dreaming at the Union Theatre, as well as in the Alumni Choir at the YMTO Concert last year!

I only did YMT once, but it was a pretty magical experience. I was part of a devised piece called Rare Dreams (2007) directed by Kath Burlinson with original songs by Sonum Batra. The whole experience felt like I was in my own "coming-of-age" film; freeing and fulfilling and great fun!

Do you still keep in contact with any YMTers?

I keep in touch with a handful of YMTers but unfortunately it's rare that we actually meet because everyone is so busy!

Sunny Moodie, Joshua Tonks, Jaygann Ayeh, Gabriel Mokake, YMT Alumni, Youth Music Theatre UK Rare Dreams

(L-R) Sunny Moodie, Joshua Tonks, Jaygann Ayeh and Gabriel Mokake - Rare Dreams, 2007

Why should people get involved with YMT?

YMT can be the perfect opportunity to find your "people". It can be difficult to fit in at school when you like theatre and musicals, but with YMT you are surrounded by people with exactly the same interests as you.

What would your dream role be?

My dream role hasn't been written yet. I'd like to create a role in an original production.

Favourite Shows?

Spring Awakening and Into The Woods are two of my favourites. They are both immensely satisfying to sing and can be interpreted in a multitude of ways.


What/who should young people research in the arts?

You should research everything that is to do with your art. Become a font of knowledge; it'll give you a good well of information to draw from.

Favourite food?

Cheese. Any type of cheese.


Ideal holiday?

Skiing in California, or Christmas in New York.

THE most important question: Scone (as in stone) or Scone (as in gone)?

Scone (as in gone)!

Read from YMT Alumni on our blog and check out how you can get involved with YMT.

Lewis Clarke - YMT Alumni - YMT Blog - Youth Music Theatre UK

An interview with Lewis Clarke


We chat to Guilford School of Acting graduate and YMT Alumni Lewis Clarke about his time with us.

All three of my YMT experiences were life changing - I did Ghosts of the Past (2010), The Dummy Tree (2010) and Korczak (2011). They turned me from a young amateur performer, into a strong, well-rounded professional and I maintain that the discipline I display in a rehearsal room today stemmed from YMT.

Lewis Clarke - Youth Music Theatre UK - Korczak - YMT Alumni

Lewis Clarke in Ghosts of the Past (2010).

Do you still keep in contact with any YMTers?

I do still keep in contact with people I met at YMT. I was lucky enough go to drama school with one of them, so we spent three years training together. It's difficult to keep up with everyone that I met because I made so many friends, however, when I randomly bump into them in London or Edinburgh we always have a catch up.

Why should people get involved with YMT?

People should get involved with YMT because it is a fantastic opportunity to meet new friends, work with many fantastic industry professionals and understand a bit more about the workings of a real rehearsal process. The intensive rehearsals were a real eye opener for me and spurred me on to make myself even stronger performer. My tip for anyone looking to get involved would be to throw yourself into it. Show that you are prepared to try anything. Especially if it is something that makes you nervous; if you can be confident doing that everything else will seem easy.

What would your dream role be?

My dream role would be Javert in Les Mis. A slightly dull choice I admit, but getting to sing 'Stars' eight times a week would be a real privilege. Also I the YMT a production Ghosts of the Past ever revived, I would love to play Gabriel once again.


Favourite Shows?

I have so many favourite shows. All the classics like Les Mis, Legally Blonde, Jersey Boys and The Book of Mormon. A slightly obscure show and one that I believe more people should know about is Bat Boy. I think that the music is fantastic and the show itself, very funny.

What/who should young people research in the arts?

I think that it is important to the individual. You have to find out the sort of company and sort of performer that you like. For instance, if you find a particular song that you like, find out who wrote it and look up some more if there stuff, you may come across something you wouldn't have before.

Lewis Clarke in Korczak (2011).

Favourite food?

I love so many different kinds of food. I think you can't beat a classic spag bol, but if I'm out for a meal, more often than not, I will get a nice rare steak!

Ideal holiday?

My ideal holiday is Dalyan, Turkey. I love the heat, the nightlife, the culture and most importantly the exchange rate is fantastic at the moment.

THE most important question: Scone (as in stone) or Scone (as in gone)?

Scone as in gone. That way it sets up my favourite joke. What's the fastest cake in the world? Scone!


Youth Music Theatre UK - Entertainment Retailers Association - YMT Blog

An interview with ERA


We chat with one of our generous supporters, the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA)!

ERA is a UK trade organisation formed specifically to act as a forum for the physical and digital retail and wholesale sectors of the music, video and video games industries. ERA members supply the sales data that then supplies the Official Charts Company (music and video charts) and Gfk Chart Track (video games). ERA also provides the organisational force behind Record Store Day UK.

What is your favourite show?

Billy Elliot!


What/who are you listening to at the moment?

The Mystery Jets new album. It's a great comeback record.

Who/what are your favourite bands/singers?

The Smiths, Arctic Monkeys, Maccabees, Leon Bridges, Amy Winehouse - we have loads!


Favourite Food?

Definitely Chocolate Oranges!

Ideal holiday?




THE most important question: Scone (as in stone) or Scone (as in gone)?


We'd like to say a huge thank you to the ERA for supporting YMT's activities! We really appreciate your help! Also, a big thank you to all our supporters!

Sean runs the marathon Youth Music Theatre UK YMT - YMT Blog

Sean runs the Marathon... Blog 2


51 days to go...

So... running is actually quite fun. Who knew? With just over seven weeks to go, I'm starting to push myself and run longer distances - I managed to do a half marathon (13.1 miles!) with minimal crying, which was good. The weather has been pretty terrible recently and running against the wind is ridiculously annoying. Thankfully, my excellent playlist (consisting of Beyoncé, Destiny's Child and more Beyoncé) gets me through! 

I haven't fallen over yet either, which is a bonus. Never say never though...


Anyway! A huge thank you to everyone who has donated so far! Any money you can spare to sponsor me is really really really really really really amazing! All money raised goes towards YMT's Bursary Scheme - allowing us to offer more opportunities to young people from all walks of life. You can donate here: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=ymtmarathon2016


Sean runs the marathon Youth Music Theatre UK YMT - YMT Blog

Before and after the half marathon! It took me 2 hours 16 minutes 14 seconds - and one weird toe blister...

Thanks again, guys!! 

Win a pair of tickets to Choirs Remixed at Southbank Centre - YMT Blog - Youth Music Theatre UK

COMPETITION! Win tickets!


Win a pair of tickets to Choirs Remixed at Southbank Centre!

Choirs Remixed feat. Andreya Triana - Saturday 19 March, 7.30pm

Soulful singer-songwriter Andreya Triana headlines an evening bringing together six boundary-pushing choirs. Some Voices, the Mike King Collective, London Contemporary Voices, LCV Kin Choir, Enchorus and Southbank Centre’s new all-male choir Beyond the Bassline each perform a short set, then join forces in special arrangements of songs from Andreya’s album Giants. Beatboxer Shlomo is your host, and band Amber Run add their voices to the mix.

Part of Southbank Centre’s Chorus festival, a celebration of the human voice. Enjoy a song-filled weekend of workshops and shows for all, and free performances from over 40 choirs. Other festival highlights include Strive Mixer: The Suppliant Women, a FREE song and music workshop for women aged 15 – 25 on Saturday 19 March and Mmm Hmm: a cappella song theatre by Verity Standen on Sunday 20 March.

For your chance to win a pair of tickets to Choirs Remixed Feat. Andreya Triana, visit www.hotticketoffers.com/chorus and enter the competition code YMTUK.

Competition closes Thursday 10 March.