About Generate Theatre Arts
By Chris Betton
Chris Betton - Artstic Director, Generate Theatre Arts
Chris is a full-time secondary school teacher at The Hathershaw College, Oldham.
Since completing his degree in Contemporary Theatre and Performance in 2013, Chris has produced work in venues such as London's O2 Arena, Manchester's Lowry Theatre and in mainland Europe. He has also worked on popular programmes such as Hollyoaks and Grange Hill.
Since leaving Poynton Town Council (as the Child Protection and Safeguarding Officer) he has taken Generate from two children in a church hall to hundreds in schools across the region.
Chris and his wife Charlotte run Generate Theatre Arts and are parents to their two boys: three-year-old Jesse and one-year-old Orson.
In 2012, Generate Theatre Arts launched as a Saturday morning activity in a church hall; and its first class consisted of just two children! Since then, the team has had the pleasure of working with over six thousand students across twenty schools, with more than eight hundred members passing through after-school classes between 2015 and 2019.
In 2018, Generate Theatre Arts began a relationship with the Victoria College of Music and Drama, London. Since then, 126 students have taken part in their Group Acting Exams, with 60% of applicants achieving Distinctions, and the remaining 40% achieving Merits. This, in addition to blockbuster performances of major musicals at venues such as the Stockport Plaza for an audience of over a thousand family and friends, remains a source of great pride for Generate Theatre Arts and helps to set Generate apart from other theatre schools.
The Department for Education and OFSTED have put major focus in recent years on schools providing a well-rounded curriculum, and on social, mental, spiritual and cultural (SMSC) education. For this reason, the Generate Theatre Arts After School Club was a real asset, especially as all teaching and learning within the sessions was designed to support cross-curricular objectives within school. Therefore, our production of 'Oliver!' in 2017 focused heavily on teaching about Victorian London, our production of 'The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe' focused on Christian philosophy, and our production of 'The Wizard of Oz' revolved around education on mental health.
Moving forward, the Youth Theatre Academy has championed this same culture, for more information on our current weekly classes, visit the link at the top of the page.
Generate Theatre Arts exists to provide a safe and exciting space for young people to develop personally, socially and academically. Why not get in touch to see how we can work together to enrich young lives?