Although I know that especially to Daisy, Hughie and Jacob ‘Bristol New Voices’ has been in the making for many months now – and realistically, we are probably on about day 98– today was our first ‘official’ day as BNV. All the planning, fundraising and workshopping became a reality this afternoon. So, armed with coloured pens, DBS forms, juice, name-games and a playlist of age appropriate music (any excuse to welcome Justin Bieber back into our lives…) we set off for Lawrence Hill. We were ushered by two friendly year eights to the large, black box studio-space that will become our little creative home for the next few months and, within moments, we met some of the expectant faces of our new company. Pens and paper at the ready, ‘Human Bingo’ had begun. I know I should go into more detail but, seriously, the time flew by. I entered the workshop teetering between excited and nervous and left with my brain whizzing with improvisations, facts about the team and ideas for next week. It is wonderful to see how a room full of creative and imaginative young people can affect your brain. Personal highlights of the first workshop include: Eli’s mid-throwing up rollercoaster face, Diggory’s impression of a spy, finding out that one of the younger members of our company also shares my strange and violent allergy to kiwis and Daisy’s three rules for the space: ‘Be Brave. Be Kind. Be Yourself’, which should really apply to everything. At the end, whilst saying our goodbyes, one of the girls came up to me and mentioned how glad she was to be there and, up until that moment, I hadn’t really stopped to realise how utterly glad I was that we are able to do this (Fundraisers: thank you!) and how happy I am to be a small part of it all. Bring on week 2.