NORD Magic

img_7683An eerie chill descended into the Firefly Studio last weekend, as 2 casts of talented young performers treated us to a winter tale of Arctic fishing folk, unusual ice formation, a trapped Beluga whale, and some strange and dastardly visitors.

With set and costume design by Jess Brettle and lighting design by Laura Hawkins, this was an exceptionally atmospheric Firefly production, and all four audiences were treated to illuminated ice-flows, chill factor fog and icy seascapes.


But while the setting may have been minus 20 degrees, the resolve, poignancy and humour of the story-line certainly warmed our hearts. Huge congratulations therefore, to the 19 cast members, aged 8 to 19 years,who performed this winter wonder with such integrity, zest and enthusiasm. Our thanks also to Eleanor Morrison, Kirsty Byers and Amy Wilson as Writer, Co-Directors and Assistant Director.

An excellent precursor for the festive season! Our thanks to all performers, their families, audience, tech and production crew who helped create this fantastic NORD magic.

View the NORD programme, featuring everyone involved, here.

Click here to view the production photographs by Sinclair MacKenzie



NORD ….coming soon!

Firefly’s whale of a winter show, NORD, is on it’s way. With 2 casts of young performers aged 8 to 18, NORD will charm all the family!

Friday 2nd December at 7pm: Tickets still available £8 (£4)

Saturday 3rd December at 3pm: Tickets still available £8 (£4)

Saturday 3rd December at 7pm: Tickets still available £8 (£4)

Sunday 4th December: Sold out.

Book yourselves some winter magic by calling 01506 333005
or email



November Newsletter


Its been a jam-packed term this autumn, so a special thank-you to all Firefly families, carers and supporters who ferry their budding young writers, actors and film-makers to various events, workshops and performances. Much appreciated by us all!

Weekly drama and film workshops have been running well. In particular this term’s Writers’ Challenge, which asked each workshop group to write short scripts for another workshop group to direct and perform. In other words, we have 8 year olds writing scripts for 18 year olds to perform, and vice-versa! We’re really looking forward to seeing some of this work at Linlithgow Burgh Halls and Howden Park Centre later this month.IMG_4542IMG_2626IMG_0102

This term also…  Firefly have been delighted to support Korr Records in continuing their Band Together sessions for young people with autism, while our own drama and creative play workshops at Beatlie and Woodmuir primary schools have also been great fun.

Meanwhile those of you unfortunate enough to have had to visit Livingston’s St John’s Hospital may have been cheered up by the fabulous array of artwork, writing and photography by Firefly’s A Word In Your Ear participants. Developed in partnership with Artlink Edinburgh, this exhibition was a great excuse to hold another AWIYE celebration of writing, live performance and film. Huge thanks to all contributors, performers, artists and supporters, and to all who came along.


West Lothian’s young writers seem to be popping up everywhere, and were sighted on a Writers’ Residential last weekend in the wilds of Torphican, attacking the outdoor assault course, making fires, burning marshmallows, and generally being creative.img_145920161105_141257

And there’s plenty more to come. Don’t miss…

West Lothian Celebrating Youth Work. Deans Community High School
Thursday 10th November, 6.30pm
Live performance from A Word In Your Ear participants
Bloody Girls at Platform, Easterhouse Arts Centre
Saturday 12th November at 3pm. Tickets £8.50 (£5, £4). Call 0141 276 9696.
Another chance to see this fierce Firefly production
Call 0141 276 9696
Chrysalis Youth Theatre Festival. Traverse Theatre Edinburgh
Fridy 18th to Sunday 20th November.
Firefly trip for both shows on Friday 18th
Parkour Pathways at Howden Park Centre
Saturday 19th November. 12-4pm. To book call 01506 33005
Parkour for beginners – test out your moves!
Firefly book launch at Armadale Library’s Book Week Scotland event
Friday 25th November, 2.30pm
Our talented Young Writers launch their second collection
Finally let’s not forget Firefly’s whale of a winter Show, NORD.
A treat for all the family! Book your tickets early to avoid disappointment.
Friday 2nd December 7pm
Saturday 3rd December 3pm & 7pm
Sunday 4th December 3pm
Tickets £8 (£4)nbannerr
So buckle up, take a deep breathe and get yourself over to Firefly.
And for more information on any of the above call 01506 333005,
or email


See you soon,
Joanna, Eleanor, Laura, Kirsty, Amy, Alison, Ellie, Kate and Rosie



Welcome Back!

Welcome back for Firefly’s Autumn 2016 programme of theatre skills, drama fun, film and media workshops, performance, training and events.

We’re delighted to welcome film-maker Kate Burton to the Firefly team, while regulars Eleanor, Kirsty, Laura, Amy, Ellie and Rosie are looking forward to getting back to working with you all. A warm welcome also to our 3 new workshop assistants, Taylor, Matthew and Enya.


Some of our core afterschool workshops are already full, but we still have places in:

Linlithgow Navigators (P4-P7) Wednesdays 4 to 5.30pm at Linlithgow Burgh Halls.

Bathgate Navigators (P4-P7) Tuesdays 4 to 5.30pm at Bathgate Regal Theatre.

Livingston Explorers (P1-P3) Mondays 3.45 to 4.45pm at Howden Park Centre.

Livingston Navigators ( P4-P7) Wednesdays 4 to 5.30pm at Howden Park Centre.

Call 01506 333005 or email if you, or someone you know, would like more information on these.

We’ll have lots more to offer between now and December. Watch out for information on theatre lighting training, Young Writers events and residential, our new contemporary theatre project, Summit Else, and auditions for this year’s Fabulous Firefly Winter Show.

See you soon…FF Autumn16b

Beast of a Show


We’re not sure when a Firefly production last caused so much debate between its young, older and even older audience members. Bloody Girls was developed as an exploration of girlhood – and its quasi Girl/Wolf delivery was robustly physical, keenly emotive, complex and affecting.

With devised text, music, song and movement woven expertly against work by Kate Tempest, Jim Crumley and Clarissa Pinkola Estes, this talented young cast created an escalating wave of sweet, funny, brutal, tender and savage moments. The role of the audience careered between that of fond parent, wildlife observer and unexpected witness to violent crime.


‘It was not just bold and thought provoking but fearless and unapologetic in its directness. The girls showed immense talent and their commitment to character was flawless throughout, morphing seamlessly from wolf to girl and back without losing the flow at any point. ‘

Heartfelt congratulations, therefore, to the hugely talented cast who, with Directors Kirsty Byers and Eleanor Morrison, created such a brave, intelligent and driven interpretation of the bloody mess of life.

‘Go out in the woods, go out.  If you don’t go out in the woods nothing will ever happen and your life will never begin.’ Clarissa Pinkola Estes


Special thanks also to the artistry of costume designer Jess Brettle and lighting designer Laura Hawkins, choreographer Isobel Ross, production assistant Amy Wilson, and to Sinclair MacKenzie for production photographs

You can see Bloody Girls at the NTS Exchange Festival at the Macrobert Theatre, Stirling on Tuesday 5th July at 7.30pm. For tickets call 01786 466666 


To view production photos by Sinclair MacKenzie click here.
To view the Bloody Girls programme click here.


Bloody Girls

Bloody Girls Final

Join us at Howden Park Centre for two home performances of Bloody Girls, Firefly’s new production for the National Theatre of Scotland’s Exchange Festival 2016!

Directed by Eleanor Morrison and Kirsty Byers, Bloody Girls is a bold, brave and brutal observation of girlhood, exploring the strength and fragility of female bonds, and the unsettling consequences of pushing these bonds to breaking point.

This production contains strong language and adult content, and we recommend it for ages 14+ only. For more information and to book your tickets call 01506 333005 or email


Terrible Consequences…

Join us for Terrible Consequences (of poorly made paraffin lamps) at Almond Valley Heritage Trust on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th May. This production has been created specially for the 2016 Festival of Museums, and takes a wry look at the accidents, incidents and calamities caused by early oil lamps.

Fast and fiercesome fun for all the family. Performances at 1.40pm and 3pm each day.



Firefly wins Best Film at Ireland’s First Cut Film Festival.

FGaze_AwardExciting news! Firefly’s all-female film crew, F-GAZE, along with film-maker Jen Randall, have won Best Film with their debut short film, The Old Lie at the First Cut! Youth Film Festival in Ireland.

Praise and acknowledgement for the film’s strength and artistry are rolling in from all directions. You can view a full feature on the making of the film currently on Creative Scotland’s website:!-youth-film-festival

Legendary rock-dog Tom Waites, whose track Hell Broke Luce features throughout the 4 minute piece, has also joined The Old Lie fan-club. He’s personally approved the film, calling it “very moving…to the heart of the matter.”

Mary McGrath from First Cut Film Festival has also congratulated the team. “The response from viewers was brilliant- they loved it & it was certainly a talking point- raising the bar and raising important topics for discussion. Above all it is a powerful, engaging, flawless film.”


Funded through Creative Scotland’s Cashback for Creativity, the F-GAZE (female gaze) project aimed to encourage more girls to take part in film-making, and to challenge gender stereotypes with females behind the camera and males in front of it.

Shot in areas of natural wilderness around Glasgow, The Old Lie is an experimental dance film which explores themes of war and innocence. It was choreographed by Natali McCleary, featured a cast of all-male dancers from Overdrive Dance Company, and took inspiration from Wilfred Owen’s classic poem, Dulce et Decorum Est.

The project was devised and led by one of Firefly’s favourite film-makers, Jen Randall of Lightshed Pictures. Our intrepid film crew, defiant, wind-blasted and not entirely water-proofed, were Bethan Dow, Megan Houston, Dana Martin, Mari Wall, Taylor Thompson and Eilidh Anderson.

FGaze01Our thanks also for the talent, commitment and resilience of the dancers: Ryan Aptomos, Charlie Scott, Luc MacDonald, Sean Brown, Calvin Wilson, John Selkirk, Ewan Chanter, Scott Sinclair, Neil Gibson, Zack Pye, Anthony Tetlow, Adam Quinn, Roddy Gilkison and Benjamin Connolly. Thanks also for project support from associate artists, Rosie Reid and Geraldine Heaney.

Catch this and some other cracking films
on Firefly’s Vimeo site: