The Malden Family Theatre (MFT), Windlesham’s purpose built theatre, hosts six visiting productions by professional companies per year, two in each term.
This has become a great Windlesham tradition and is, we think, unique for a prep school. It provides the children with the opportunity to enjoy the experience of going to the theatre with their friends and parents though obviously they may attend alone as well.
The productions are chosen and run by our MFT Programme co-ordinator, Rachel Webster (a former Windlesham parent who read English Literature at Edinburgh and has huge experience of theatre). Our aim is to produce a good mix of drama, music, dance, storytelling, opera and visual art just as you would find in any theatre. Sometimes the content engages directly with what the children are learning in school, sometimes it is pure entertainment. We are constantly in touch with national/international and local theatre groups and Rachel attends both the Brighton and the Edinburgh Festivals to scout for new talent. Some production companies also organise workshops for the children.
Over the years, we have welcomed names like Carol Ann Duffy, Michael Rosen, the 2 Faced Dance Company, The Magnets and Out of the Blue (from Britain’s got Talent).
We aim to find performances that are suitable for the 7-13 age group and adults and have recently we introduced a ‘Junior MFT’ for 5-10 year olds: Michael Morpurgo’s, ‘I Believe in Unicorns’ was particularly aimed at the Pre-Prep and the Juniors in the Prep School and is something we hope to repeat when another suitable show is found.