Conversations at The Wheeler Centre: Children on Death

Satchmo with glassesIn this ground-­breaking conversation, St Martins Youth Arts Centre in collaboration with the Wheeler Centre – a group of children aged 6 to 16 from St Martins Youth Arts Centre lend their views on one of the biggest taboos of all.

The Belgian government recently passed a unanimous motion allowing children the right to die in situations of terminal illness. This ruling brings into question the conceptual understandings and maturity of young people. Do children understand the irreversibility, and universality of death? Should they be burdened with the choice?

The inevitability of death is something everyone has to face, not just our own but of those around us. As adults, we struggle to cope with the impact of grief and bereavement, but as children we are often shielded from death.

The company ensemble at St Martins Youth Arts Centre will unravel some of the mysteries of death in a frank and at times hilarious conversation. This panel will boldly confront the mortal condition with fearlessness and curiosity offering a rare and poignant insight.

An icon of Melbourne theatre, St Martins, Australia’s first Youth Arts Centre and the key provider of drama participation experiences for Victorian children, have since 1980, inspired over 100 thousand young create people through active arts participation.

Continuing in the maverick spirit of its early origins, the company is embarking on a fresh new vision for the future, where brave works are conceived and created by children for adults.

In the last eighteen months, St Martins Youth Arts Centre has been working with an extraordinary and diverse group of thirteen young people aged 5 – 18, this ensemble has been surrounded and mentored by professional artists and cultural leaders.

Armed with a whimsical capacity for storytelling and a unique sensitivity, these young people have become experts at intervening in public spaces where no one expects to find them. This assembly of children is bursting with cheeky ideas and unique perspectives. Their insight is without filter. Adults sit up straighter in their presence.

Children are cultural agents,” says Executive Producer, Clare Carmody. “We are proud that our children can be a focal point for innovation and cultural investigation and we think adults will be find their insights unique and captivating.”

Children on Death
The Wheeler Centre, 176 Little Lonsdale Street, Melbourne
Event: Thursday 12 June 2014 – 6.15pm
Free entry (bookings recommended)

For more information and bookings, visit the Wheeler Centre website for details.

Image: Satchmo Kennedy – photo by Pia Johnson