Two of Dundee’s most exciting arts organisations, Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre and Shaper/Caper have received funding through Creative Scotland towards the cost of hosting two 12-month traineeships for Young People.

Part of Scotland’s ‘Year of Young People 2018’, the traineeships allow creative organisations and businesses to give 16-24 year olds interested in progressing a career in the arts, screen and creative industries, the opportunity to gain skills and experience that potential employers would value, to remove the barrier of lack of paid work experience, and to help boost the start of their career in 2018.

Shaper/Caper is a Dundee-based dance charity led by Artistic Director Thomas Small, BBC Radio 2’s first ever Artist in Residence. Shaper/Caper run a number of creative learning projects, workshops and performances for people of all ages.

Dance Trainee Alex McCrossan said:

“I have been observing Shaper/Caper’s work from the side-lines over in sunny Glasgow since the original development. The variety of work created and provided by Thomas and the rest of the team is extraordinary. For young people in any industry it’s hard to maintain a consistent career and young practitioners in the arts is no different. I hope to contribute to the efforts made by Shaper/Caper to create pathways for young people in dance and the arts as well as build my own career and take it to new levels not yet explored. The opportunity to not only facilitate classes, work closely with fabulous practitioners in the contemporary dance field, perform and develop choreography, it was a case of why wouldn’t I apply rather than why I would! I’m excited to work in a different city with new people and experience all that Shaper/Caper has to offer. It’s going to be a smashing year!”

As one of the UK’s foremost theatres, Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre are committed to embracing their role within the industry to inspire a generation of theatre makers and artists, ensuring that the sector is not just sustainable but also thriving.

Since taking up his post in early April, Wardrobe Assistant Trainee Darren McFawns has been busy with Dundee Rep Ensemble’s acclaimed production of Passing Places before moving on to costume work for Dundee Rep’s production of The 39 Steps.

Darren said:

“I was truly fortunate to have been accepted for the traineeship at Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre. I’ve always been passionate about developing the skills involved in costume making and when I saw the role advertised, I leaped at the opportunity to apply. Learning from professionals, together with the perseverance and true dedication it takes to make a play a real success is something I couldn’t wait to see. Being exposed to professional wardrobes and the thought that the garments I produce will actually be used on stage – it really is exciting! An opportunity like this is something I’ve worked towards for three years now and this years’ experience – together with the camaraderie of being around such fun, positive, people – is going to set me up well for higher education in 2019.”

 Speaking about the initiative, Colin Bradie, TTS Programme Manager, Creative Scotland, said:

“We are delighted to be supporting both Shaper/Caper and Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre in hosting their traineeships, through the Year of Young People 2018 Creative Traineeship Fund.  Through removing barriers to paid work experience, this initiative has been designed to boost the career prospects of young people interested in progressing a career in the arts. This opportunity enables two young people to play uniquely different roles in two leading arts organisations in Dundee, offering a unique and exciting first-step to their careers.”