Projects

Rhys Davies Projects 2015

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In March and April 2015, pupils supported by the Neath Port Talbot Minority Ethnic Achievement Support team enjoyed four creative writing workshops with Writer and Director Ndidi Spencer with funding from the Rhys Davies Trust.

Twenty three pupils from St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Secondary School and Cwrt Sart Comprehensive explored issues around identity and perceptions of character to create a series of individual monologues inspired by photographs.

The Minority Ethnic Achievement Support (M.E.A.S.) team work alongside schools in Neath Port Talbot to ensure that inclusive learning is part of the curriculum all year round. Cultural Diversity Days and partnership work can help break down stereotyping and allow children to feel inspired and deal with any potential racism they may encounter.

Ndidi Spencer said “We thoroughly enjoyed running the workshops in Neath Port Talbot. It was interesting and inspiring to experience each individual’s interpretation of Identity.

Their approach to character building, drawing on real life experiences and inspiring scenarios from which identity could be explored, resonates in the hard-hitting monologues, which they produced to a very high standard.”

 

Cwrt Sart Monologues

Hey you! I’m talking to you! Do you know who I am? Well, if not pal, you better listen up, cause I’m about to tell you. I’m the great and feared Mario. You know. The best thief and hacker in the whole world! You know my greatest achievement? Hacking the FBI, what’s yours? Robbing the local corner store? You know how hard it is to live on the run? Obviously not, I know what you’ve done. You probably got caught the moment you walked out of there with a gun in one hand and a little swag bag in the other. Well guess what? Life on the run is one hell of a thrill I tell you. I robbed everything that I could. 366 banks, and the whole time I was ecstatic. Running from the cops is no big deal if you’ve got a good Mafia. The only thing that brought me down during the whole thing was that I couldn’t see my wife and daughter. After getting tired of it, I mean, 366 banks, I ought to be in the Guinness Book of World Records, but I don’t think they accept criminals. I moved on to hacking. And guess what? I was only caught because I did the most daring thing, a thing you’d never be able to do. A thing I think only I’ve tried. I hacked the FBI. Retrieved thousands of files before they traced the intrusion right to my doorstep, I mean come on! The greatest behind bars? What will people think of me? My reputation outside of these prison walls will deteriorate. I’ll lose my position as mafia boss. Well, listen up. I’ve got a plan. I’m used to controlling things, and this prison? Well, it’s not gonna be hard. And you know who I’ll start with? That’s right. I’m gonna start with you.
Adam

My name is Carolyn and I’m here today to tell you about drugs and more importantly my son’s addiction and the consequences. It all started with the argument. He was angry with me because I had split up with his father and married someone else. He had been backpacking in Australia for 2 years and had come home to see that I had married somebody else. He told me that I was a terrible person and left the house. I was crying and even more so when I was phoned by the police being told that they had found him unconscious on the street corner at 3 o’clock in the morning. I’m sorry. He didn’t tell me about the drink and drugs, I came to my own conclusions about that. We made up and I would confront him but he would lie to me and say it was nothing. About a year later he got a new girlfriend and brought her home to meet me. She was beautiful. He told me she was a model, I wasn’t surprised. I thought they were happy and my son had finally got clean but no. it turns out they were both as bad as each other. They would sit in the flat they had together and take anything they could get their hands on. One night my son was by himself. Took drugs and died. I wasn’t there so I can’t tell you anymore details. He was found on his own by the police after the neighbours phoned them saying nobody had gone in or out for 2 days. Thank you for listening. I hope you will never go down the same path as my son.
Alex

James Hill is holding his Grandson in his arms, they are alone.

Do you know you have your fathers’ eye big beautiful and brown ones; you remind me loads of your father. When you were born you was exactly the same weight as your father 7 pounds isn’t that funny.

You find that funny then, oh you love me now, promise me you will never be too old for your Grandad. Don’t drift away from me like your father did. Did you know he called me lame.

Oh sonny boy I’m not lame do lame people take bullets for people. Yes you heard me I took a bullet for your great uncle. So there I was a man aimed a gun …pulled the trigger… My mind over flowed,  but my instincts won … I dived the bullet did what bullets do. I was on the floor ready to die, and then I heard the ambulance.

You may not understand yet this but your Grandad is pretty cool.
Caitlin

Man– We should just surrender after all it it’s the best thing to do instead of getting chased by all the police and FBI.

Mario– Do you know who I am? Do you know what kind of things I have had to do to get where I am now and all the things I have done. Those people who are standing right by that door by there they have been hunting me down chasing me down ever since my first ever bank robbery and hacking job and let me tell you my friend that was a LONG time ago and you think for one minute that I am just going to go up to that door opening it and let them just take me and give me time for  it there is no way on god’s earth I would ever let that happen. Yeah for you it may be a few months and early realise but not for me I will be in there until I get a knock on my door saying you may go that may never happen I may be in here for life until my bones rot away in that corner but let me say I am a man who fought through people to get where I am now and all the things I did you just thin I’m going to give up and leave myself be captured by them you got no chance because me myself will never take anything easy I will fight and fight until there is no fight left in me and by then I will be gone because I will always fight no matter what situation I may be in.
Callum

I need to confess but before I do I need you to know that I love you. I am your daughter Lucy Beale and I am eternally grateful for your willingness to listen to me, you kept me safe when I was young, only when I was young. I was 14 and you left me to fend for myself, I was alone on my own surrounded by models. As I grew I changed I became one of those stuck up models I was scared of becoming. No one knew the pain I was going through inside, I built a wall of happiness, cockiness and confidence. I was torn apart by many agents, fat! Fat they called me; I had lost 2 stone after that day to please them. I was 18 and diagnosed with bulimia, I wanted to stop and give up that life of pain but you wouldn’t let me, why mother? Why. I’ve never old you until now because I thought you would of pushed me away, but now it was time I told you!. I need to be happy I don’t want to be alone anymore if I carry on, my silence will consume me and I’ll never be happy!

I thought it would have been fun being a model at first but now I know pretty hurts and perfection is the disease of a nation.

After today things are going to change and I am going to live my life the way I want to live it.
Courtney

James Hill is on one knee in front of his girlfriend, in his hand is a small box with an engagement ring, they’re surrounded by people.

His face holds the same emotion, the same face he had on when he asked her that one question.

Oh my God, oh my God! What if she says no? I’m going to be so embarrassed. What about that restaurant I booked? Okay, okay, keep it together you can do this, it’s no big deal… what am I talking about?! This is the biggest moment of my life and I’m here saying it’s no big deal! What is wrong with me?! What about my father, what would he think? Okay, as long as I don’t sweat it, it should all work out for me, take a deep breath and pull yourself together. You’re meant to be a man, not a nervous breakdown. Oh I’m going to make a fool out of myself in front of her and everyone else in the room! Is she going to reject me or not? This is doing my head in not knowing the answer to my question! It’s a yes or no answer, so it’s a fifty percent chance I get rejected or not?

Please, please don’t reject me, I really do love you. Please don’t leave me; I really need you in my life. Okay, okay keep it together and just hope for the best and she might say yes, after all, she would have left me already if she didn’t love me… but she might not have said it to spare my feelings… oh I hope this is just my imagination making all of this up.
Hollie

Why don’t people like me? I wonder, just wonder why?

Is it my personality, hmm? No that can’t be right.

I just have to find the answer and I need the answer tonight!!

What it is I do? No that’s wrong too.

My job is great, my profession isn’t bad.

People don’t care about the job I do as long as it isn’t killing.

My name, my accent, where I come from?

No, they aren’t the right reasons. I can’t change those things.

My nationality is out of the question too. I can’t change that!!

I think I now realise the reason, the reason why people despise me

It’s because of who I am, who I am inside.

The real me who I am really, nervous, anxious, stressed,

Sometimes I could explode, and trust me nobody wants to see that,

Don’t judge a book by its cover it might not be what it shows.
Isabelle

My hands are clammy and sweat drips from my head as my wife is rushed into the ambulance for the fourth time this week. I am trembling as I listen to the engine speed down the road and the flashing lights above are racing too. I am finding it extremely hard to stay positive in front of my wife but as I watched my mother go through the same, my head spins even more with worry and thoughts. This illness is horrific and nobody understands more than me as my heart is breaking for the second time this month. I can see her now entering the private room in the hospital and as I am waiting on the chair I feel tears trickling down my cheek and my hands are losing grip of my head. I start to tremble once again as extra nurses and doctors are called for my wife. Nobody knows about this illness except me, and I worry to myself thinking that I’m not doing the right thing by keeping it a secret. I can’t breathe now and I want this all over! I start to pace up and down the hall way, but my mind is filling up with thoughts. I wonder what to do, I am losing my head.

Molly

People ask me why do I steal from this shop because I have to, I had to feed my family have you ever felt that you haven’t got any money and your kids ask for some food or they are hungry so I’m not a thief don’t think I am because I’m not I only steal because I have to so please don’t fire me. My life is not an easy life to live I only work part time and I don’t get paid much my daughter is ill as well so when I do steal it’s not much but when I do my wife and I have to go with out for our kids and when I come back with enough for all of us most of It goes to our kids so they don’t get hungry at school and they don’t get made fun of I can’t tell my kids that we are pour otherwise they will think I’m a bad parent  and I don’t want them to think that so just because you have enough money to feed your kids it’s all great for you but for some people it’s more difficult I feel bad for stealing I don’t want to but I have to so please forgive me.
Shay

I walked out of the delivery room and flopped into a chair. Then a man came and sat next to me and said to me “My wife has just gone in, I’m so excited!”

Excited! Excited! It was an absolute disaster! I thought the baby just came out, you cuddled it, named it and you could leave. But, oh no! No one prepared me for what happened. So, me and the wife arrived at the hospital, She is walking beside doing some kind of breathing exercises but if you asked me she sounded like a female darth vader, but I would not dare say it aloud!

Suddenly, I felt a strong grip on my arm; I turned around to see my wife virtually hanging off my arm.  Then, the nurses got her on the bed. She was screaming in pain. She was breathing in gas and air but I tell you something, she could be the female darth vader ‘cause she even had the mask now. She started shouting at me saying stuff like “It’s all your fault!” I was nervous but I wasn’t about to admit that, No way! She told me “Don’t just sit there do something!” So, I stood and took her hand. Then, when it finally came out! UGH! Don’t even go there! It was a screaming mess but that’s how they know a baby is healthy . . . I think? The nurse announced it was a boy, all that was going through my head was “ Oh my god I hope he don’t like me! God help him if he looks like me!”

So, I was about to say “okay, it’s done, lets name him and lets go.”  But, then another one started to come. Oh god, I’ve got to go through that all over again. I called it the curse of the twins; don’t ask me why though, because I couldn’t tell you. It just seemed to fit at the time. Finally, she was out. It was all over and about time to. We ended up naming then Brandon and Claire….
Starr

My name is Michael and I work in a part-time job in a food store. It’s hard to live my life because I only work 2 times a week and I have to do something I don’t want to do but, I have to. That is: stealing. I have to steal food to feed my family, me, my wife and my 2 daughters. So tonight, I am going to do it, steal. So I went to where most of the food was and started to put some food in my bag, when I hear my name. I look around and, no-ones there, so I carry on and, there it is again, my name. I look around and there’s a big man in a big black overcoat staring at me. He asks what I’m doing, and I don’t answer him. He asks again if I was stealing and, I shake my head no, but I know that he already knows. Now, I thought that I was in big trouble and that I was going to lose my job, go to jail and my family were going to starve. So I felt terrible. But, actually I thought wrong. It was the complete wrong end of the stick. I was in the biggest luck I had, because he said that he would offer me a job, I ask what kind, and he says it’s a stealing job, and now, 3 years later, I am working for him and I still live with all my family, with a better job: stealing.
Taylor

St Joseph’s Monologues

“Hey isn’t that the car that you just crashed…um…” I’m so sorry can I please start again because I’m really stressed you see I was working late yesterday and I was really busy. I lost my husband last year, I have a child to look after as well so it’s really hard for me. I really need this part because everyone hated me. I want to be an actor but directors said no because of my looks. In middle school no-one would talk to me, play with me, they would just walk away, even in my 20’s. So please, I really need this part.
Louby

I feel very shy with the way I am, because I have always been unpopular in my life.

Inside I feel that I am uncool to go near popular girls, because of the way I am, I feel uncomfortable with my own character because I am shy to be with girls who I have not been with my whole life, the popular young girl gang think that I am one of the unpopular and poor ones, but I am rich and unpopular that’s who I am. I can’t change how I live because of popular girls. I really want to show them girls that I can be myself.

I got invited to one of the popular girls party and I shared my feelings with her and I said “I feel uncomfortable with myself because I have never been friends with you girls before in my life, but that one day I became that person who I always wanted to be in my life and now I am a popular model like I wanted to be, that was my dream job.
Melissa

I’ve heard a lot of young kids suddenly changing their minds about what they want to do when they are older.

I want to tell you about when I was younger about 15 years old in Secondary school.

I was desperate to fit in with the ‘cool’ kids. It was like they had control over me. To fit in with them you had to have the most expensive clothes and no nits in your hair. I remember always asking my Mum to go shopping in these really expensive shops and making sure I washed my hair every day. I hated every lesson apart from Maths and science. Throughout school I had the ambition of becoming a doctor. But my friends made fun of me and told me it was a job for geeks and wierdos and they said if I was being geeky, I would become uncool and not fit in at all.

So because I really wanted to be cool and fit in with them, I gave up my dream of becoming a doctor. Right now I still regret it. I’ve lived with anger and hate.

That’s the reason why I decided to become a teacher and the reason is because I couldn’t achieve my dreams. I am here to help you guys achieve your dreams. It is a simple message of getting you not to allow people to push you around and make decisions for you. So make sure you become what you want to be and not what others want you to become.
Essie

 

Where’ re you off to then? I’m on my way to Cardiff, I’m going to meet my boyfriend he

Said he has a surprise what do you think it will be, will he give me a ring? OMG he’s so going to propose to me, I’m going to be a wife, right, how will I react, am I going to cry, laugh, smile. But what if he doesn’t propose. Oh my God what if he breaks up with me. Will I cry, will I slap him, oh God did he cheat on me? Oh, I swear if he cheated on me! God Ava don’t get ahead of yourself, he’s probably just taking me out to dinner. Well… I hope.
Brooke

Why me, I ask myself daily, but I know I can’t change my past but I can write my future. I’ve moved on he can’t get to me now. I’ve got Lola. I’m me I’m independent who needs boyfriends? Not me! My future’s looking up, I’m holding my head up high and I’m taking a midwifery course. I’m going up in the world following my dream and being who I want to be. Just the other day I spotted a really hot single guy, proper checking me out.

But I’m not ready yet it’s too early, I couldn’t do that to him. I mean I don’t like him or anything… or do I… No I’m being silly. I’m totally over him it’s me and Lola now. No one else just us.
Jaz

Hi Nan. I hope you are listening and that I’m not just talking to a gravestone. We have all been missing you just being there to share positivity, but I have got to say that since you have been gone we have been changing our ways for the better. And I have mentioned that the family is going to get bigger within the next week, you are going to be a great grandma, maybe one day I shall bring her here to see you. Just before I forget to tell you, me and Sophie have been picked up by a record label, I hope I am making you proud. Also me and Sophie are moving into a bigger house with the work money savings we are planning to get a little pup. I know I have been coming to see you a lot more than planned, but it’s all for the fact that I am missing you and that I would be no-one without you. Well I better get going otherwise I will be late for work. Goodbye for now. I shall pop around tomorrow.
Chloe

They do it every day, I try to stay to myself but no they find me from every corner I hide. I hate her, Sofia is her name. She is just one of them girls that likes to boast about everything and bully people. That is what she did to me. I told my Mum so she spoke to the principal to ask if I could move school. When I was getting ready in the morning I thought of a new start. So I wore my best clothes and held my head high and went to school and joined the popular group. I am so happy I moved school.
Khushi

Oi!! Did you just call me? Oi!! Why aren’t you answering me?… Well? Did you ask me if I know a girl called Georgia Jones, well guess what, I don’t, so you can go and tell this Georgia girl to stop talking about me when she has no idea who I am in the first place. I bet if you ask her, she will have no idea who I am or even how old I am, so I hope you understand that there is no way me and this girl know each other, alright, so back off and don’t ever mention her again! OK…
Phoebe

Well, I’m not too good actually. My Gran passed away a couple of weeks ago, so I am really emotional. She always spoilt me rotten, as Grans do, though it’s sad because she won’t be able to meet my baby brother. But apart from that I’m alright. Well apart from when we went to the doctors to see how the baby was progressing and the nurse told us he may have down’s syndrome, so to hear that really upset me. But he wouldn’t of been loved any less. I will always tell him stories about my gran though, tell him how amazing and loving she was. Now I’ve got it off my chest and had you to talk to I feel much better, actually I’m feeling great. I’m going to think positive from now on. But anyway, how are you feeling?
Jessica

I feel very shy with the way I am, because I have always been unpopular in my life.

Inside I feel that I am uncool to go near popular girls, because of the way I am. I feel uncomfortable with my own character because I am shy to be with girls who I have not been with through my whole life. The popular girl gang think that I am one of the unpopular poor ones, but I am rich and unpopular that’s who I am, I can’t change how I live because of the popular girls.

I really want to show those girls that I can be myself. I got invited to one of the popular girl’s party and I shared my feelings with her, and I said ‘I feel uncomfortable with myself because I have never been friends with you girls before in my life, but maybe one day I can become that person who I always wanted to be in my life. And now that I am a popular model, like I wanted to be, that was my dream job.
Melissa

It was an interesting time, I can say. But I wasn’t too sure what I’d wear or even if I should have gone. I was nervous because of that incident that happened last year. That girl who put that hot dog in her hand and launched it at me as if she was a human catapult. I was worried that it might happen again. I did decide to go after a long time of thinking. I went to the dress shop and found the perfect dress. That was until that kid came up to me and reminded me that I was the one who had had the hot dog thrown at her. That knocked my confidence down a bit, but I knew that I couldn’t miss an opportunity like this. I went home and tried on my new soft pink sparkling dress. It looked amazing, just like all of the other celebrities. I put my make up on, got out of the house and into the limo. It was beautiful, bright lights, everything was perfect. I got out of the limo and onto the red fluffy carpet. I felt like a star. I saw a hand ready to launch, I closed my eyes…
Anastasia