In July 2014 we were commissioned to create work for Flux Liverpool Arts Festival, and awarded funding from IdeasTap to make it possible.

We ran ‘Cyberbullying Awareness Week’: a week of Drama Workshops with over 75 students across Liverpool. The young people discussed the causes and consequences of cyberbullying, examined factual sources (such as articles and interviews) and explored techniques for devising their own performance.

It doesn’t just happen on the internet, it affects people’s everyday lifeWorkshop participant

The material generated at these workshops helped us to create Friend Request, our issue-based show about cyberbullying.

Groups from around the city each helped develop a different part of the final show. Students at the Merseyside Youth Association (The Space Project) improvised short scripts and contributed ideas for scenes, students at Wirral Youth Theatre devised performances based on contrasting factual sources and explored how narrative order can affect empathy, the So Talented Academy choreographed movement sequences and others contributed film and video material.

The aim of the project was to encourage mutual respect and empathy between strangers. By working together towards a common goal – even though they might never meet – we hope that the young people of Liverpool feel united and inspired in the fight against cyberbullying.

It really brought the group closer togetherWorkshop participant

The material created during Cyberbullying Awareness Week was adapted into an initial 40-minute performance using professional actors. The show combined much of the student’s original work, factual research, filmed inserts and animated sequences. Friend Request¬†was first performed on Wednesday 30th July 2014 at Tate Liverpool.

Friend Request 2014 Production Photo