Chichester Festival Youth Theatre

Crossing Lines

A new play by Anna Ledwich

Promenade Performance
Family Friendly
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Lend us your ears

1914. A West Sussex city. War looms and a community gathers to celebrate the brave young men marching for freedom.

1939. Under the shadow of invasion, the city’s young are offered up once more to a conflict on foreign soil.

2019. The same city and a new threat is looming. Borders are collapsing. Communities uprooted. People are on the move. There is only one route to safety and only one means of communication, via the airwaves… but can they be trusted? 

Stories connect across time and across technologies as history haunts the present and the city’s young race to escape the dark forces poised to destroy the country they know. Using audio technology and live action, this promenade performance through the streets of Chichester asks: can an individual alter history by changing the channel?

Crossing Lines will take place across the heart of Chichester, with locations including Chichester Cathedral, Pallant House Gallery, The Novium Museum and the Bishop’s Palace Gardens. The audience will follow the action on foot.

Chichester Festival Youth Theatre’s renowned biennial outdoor productions include Grimm Tales (2017) and the award-winning Running Wild (2015).

CFT’s new Writer-in-Residence, Anna Ledwich adapted Beauty and the Beast for CFYT in 2017 and was co-Artistic Director of Theatre on the Fly at Chichester in 2012. Director Daniel Hill has devised and directed over 40 productions for young people, including promenade productions of Alice’s Adventures and Wind in the Willows.

Important information – please read before booking.

  • Crossing Lines is a promenade production; the audience will follow the action on foot around the centre of Chichester. Details about the start and end location will be sent in advance.
  • As an immersive piece of theatre, audience members will use wireless headsets provided as part of the performance.
  • There is no formal seating and the audience will be required to stand during the scenes. However, there will be limited seating at each location for those with access requirements, and children may be able to sit on the ground.
  • Tickets are limited to a maximum of four per person.
  • Age guidance of 7+ 

Cast & Creatives

Creative Team

Cast List

Daniel Hill


Ryan Dawson Laight


David Lewington

Sound and Music

Zoie Golding

Movement Director



Q&A with David Lewington

David Lewington is responsible for creating the sound and music you will hear in Crossing Lines. We sat down to ask him more about his work on the show.

What can the audience expect from Crossing Lines?

An immersive experience that will enthuse, engage and encourage them to consider a disturbing but not at all unbelievable reality that runs parallel to our own.

Have you worked on a project like this before?

I have worked on promenade shows before but never on a show where the audience are wearing headphones. It gives me a fantastic opportunity to affect your perception of the narrative and of the world at large.

What’s exciting about working with young people?

I find young people to be very open and explorative when it comes to their own creativity. They’re still very much in the business of building worlds and inviting others to share in that creativity with them - that playfulness is infectious and is something quite positive that all people, regardless of age can benefit from.

As a musician working with young people, it always fills me with joy to see how a young person can take something I’ve created and breathe life into it, often in ways I hadn’t considered. Perhaps the biggest draw for me is the chance to positively impact and empower a large number of young people, which is invigorating.

What’s the relationship between sound and music in the piece?

Sound and music are inextricably linked in my work. I like to blur the line between what an audience considers sound and music design, as is often done in film.

In Crossing Lines, our audience will be listening to a personal soundscape that will follow them, guide them and engage them on their travels around the city and the story. This allows me to create delicate and intimate soundscapes to tell a sonic story with subtlety. Any music they hear without the headphones on in the static scenes can be reinforced and further elaborated as they walk, in the form of adverts, slogans, dialogue and ditties, all in a collage.

Tell us a little about the technology you’re using in this piece and what makes it special?

The audio transmission technology has existed for some time - if you’ve ever gone to a silent disco, you will have used this gear. However, the difference lies in how we’re utilising it, shaping with subtlety a different experience for each of the three groups of audience members. It essentially allows for the same show to be viewed through three different lenses.

The recording technology, binaural, has also been about for a while. Record companies were experimenting with it back in the 60s and 70s but it never took off commercially. It is a technique that is most effective when you wear headphones which works to our advantage! The science behind it is pretty sound - no pun intended. As a human being with two ears on the side of your head, sound enters both sides and is interpreted by your brain. If a sound is generated on your left, your left ear will hear it more clearly than your right. Binaural recording, with its emphasis on recreating this natural process of hearing as opposed to omni-directional recording (which records in 360 degree clarity) allows us theatremakers to access that neural process of locating the source of the sound and exploit it to heighten your dramatic experience. The show explores a dystopic Britain, so you can imagine how the ability to control your perception, keep you guessing and catch you off-guard is going to be useful!

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Age Guidance 
Age 7+
Running Time
1 hour 55 minutes including travel. There will be no interval.