You Make It Happen


TakeOver – You Make It Happen

Our award-winning TakeOver Festival is an annual festival run entirely by young people aged 12 – 26 years, mentored by industry professionals.

Overseen by a Board of Trustees and led by a new senior team each year, TakeOver brings together a creative, engaged and diverse group of people who then work together to produce and deliver a large-scale theatre and arts festival.

As one of the best industry work experience opportunities out there, TakeOver gives young people unparalleled access to programming one of the oldest producing theatres in the country.

The 11th TakeOver Festival will take place in Autumn 2020.

In the meantime why not have a listen to the York Theatre Royal podcast, Adlib, hosted and produced by TakeOver Festival 2018 board members, Henry Longstaff and Jessy Roberts.

Mission & Values

Why TakeOver matters

TakeOver exists to give young people the opportunity to gain valuable real life work experience along with support and mentoring from professional industry mentoring, while having the freedom to programme and produce a large-scale arts festival.

We inspire and cultivate the potential of young people in our community through the creative arts and uphold our reputation nationally as an innovator in the field.

What TakeOver does

Talent – recognises the talent and potential of young people, emerging young professionals and companies
Arts – creates an innovative and diverse arts festival programme
Knowledge – develops professional skills and knowledge with support from York Theatre Royal staff
Engage – engages with as wide an audience as possible – old and new
Outreach – widens participation within the arts and the York Theatre Royal community
Valuable – delivers a valuable experience for all participants and mentors and ensures TakeOver is a valuable addition to York Theatre Royal’s programme of work
Experience – offers real professional industry experience and mentorship
Relationships – develops relationships within York Theatre Royal , York’s community and the arts sector.

“TakeOver has completely changed my outlook on what I want to do with my future as it made me realise I need to contribute something positive to society. I really cannot tell you how much I have learned and how grateful I am.”

TakeOver Participant

Donate now

Be a part of their future

The award winning TakeOver Festival is one of the best industry work experience opportunities out there for young people and has been much emulated nationally. Support our work by donating through Box Office, online or by contacting our friendly Development Team on 01904 715460.

Join TakeOver

If you’re under 26 and are interested in taking part in the festival, email our Outreach Director Paula Clark at

No previous experience is necessary, so whether you’re already a bit of a theatre/music buff or you’ve never touched the stuff, you’re very welcome to come and join the fun!