Arc news: July 2017

Boy X Event

The return of Boy X

This summer we are welcoming the return of our anti-gangs and youth violence/weapon crime play Boy X - reworked as Forum Theatre and special excerpts for schools and community events.

Arc's hard-hitting play Boy X by Clifford Oliver - the first in our Blade Trilogy - has now been reworked to perform as an interactive theatre piece or specially selected scenes with discussion, for school, college and adult audiences throughout the UK.

Boy X performed on Monday 10 July at New Scotland Yard in front of a specially invited audience at a Metropolitan Police Service Knife Crime event, with Commissioner Cressida Dick, Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime Sophie Linden, Richard Taylor OBE, and Neville Lawrence OBE - who will chair a new police monitoring group whose remit is to hold police to account over knife crime and community relations.

Met commissioner, Cressida Dick, has said that knife crime is one of her top priorities. In London alone, 23 people under 25 have been killed by knives already this year, according to the Met’s latest figures. There was a 24% rise in knife crime in London in the 12 months ending in March. (From The Guardian, 4 July 2017)

Boy X event.1

Image above (left to right): Neville Lawrence OBE - father of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence, Arc actor Jordan Barrett, Arc Education Director Natalie Smith, and Richard Taylor OBE - father of murdered child Damilola Taylor (Arc Actor Aaron Gordon not pictured). Top banner image (left to right): Arc Education Director Natalie Smith, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick and Arc's Artistic Director, Clifford Oliver. Images copyright Arc Theatre, 2017


Four boys stand at a graveside. Boy X is dead. Another 16-year old murdered. The cycle of revenge begins again.

Boy X was originally developed and performed by four young actors who helped to create the story through workshops drawing upon real experiences of living on gang-dominated estates.  Boy X does not make any attempt to answer the questions that result from violent crime, but rather invites its audience to an 'experience', which presents a set of complex decisions.

Boy X explores weapon-carrying, gang culture and violent crime. It can be delivered as a 20-minute performance of excerpts from the original Boy X production, or as an interactive Forum Theatr eprogramme.  This will provide the audience with a real feel for the characters and the drama, from youth violence and gang crime, to loyalty, trust and abuse.

To find out more about Boy X, visit our Boy X education page, or call Natalie Smith at Arc on 020 8595 8509.

Boy X original cast

Boy X 2009 cast with actors Jordan Barrett, Michael Kofi, Lee Vassell and Tendayi Jembere. Image by Katie Snooks

Arc diary of events

Every Saturday
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Mar '19
Secondary schools for LB Camden:
Crossing Over road safety drama workshops

Mar '19
Adult community audience for Thurrock CSP:
Friend or Faux & School for Scammers awareness theatre

4 Apr '19
LB B&D community audience at Broadway Theatre Women's Empowerment Event:
Raised Voices film and presentation

Til spring '19
Secondary schools for LB Hackney SNB:
Stop & Think stop & search drama workshops

Til Jul '19
School audiences for LB B&D / MOPAC:
Raised Voices: An Equal World film/presentation tour

Til Jul '19
Secondary schools for Epping Forest District Council:
#Consequences health & wellbeing roadshow

Til Jul '19
Secondary schools for Hertsmere Borough Council:
Health & wellbeing roadshow

Til Jul '19
Community groups for Havering SNB:
School for Scammers scamming awareness theatre

Throughout '19
LB B&D primary schools for HO BSBT:
Unlimited counter extremism programme

Throughout '19
Nursery, infant & primary schools:
Oliver's Tales storytelling workshops

Throughout '19
Primary & secondary schools in London Boroughs:
Broadcast/Broadcast Junior online safety programme

Throughout '19
Secondary school audiences:
No More Whispers Female Genital Mutilation awareness theatre

Throughout '19
Primary & secondary school staff:
Arc's Female Genital Mutilation INSETs with Leyla Hussein

Throughout '19
Young people for LB B&D MOPAC & Jack Petchey:
Raised Voices female leadership programme

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