WASSAIL Theatre Company creates ambitious and authentic audience-led theatre across Somerset and beyond.

The word ‘wassail’ is from was hál (Old English) literally meaning “be healthful”.Accessing arts and culture is good for you. It’s so good for you that the NHS has started referring people to take part in creative activity for their health.

Wassail makes original plays inspired by Somerset’s amazing people and places, and this year we’ve become Associate Artists at The Brewhouse.We’re excited to work closely with the staff, volunteers and audiences.

Taunton Theatre Association (TTA), who operate The Brewhouse, have transformed it into a key cultural hub nationally, regionally and locally. It’s no surprise that The Brewhouse is once again seen as a key part of growing, developing and supporting Somerset’s theatre ecology. A venue like The Brewhouse is an artist’s best friend.

What makes our relationship with TTA and The Brewhouse so unique is that while we meet and sometimes (not always) rehearse in the building, we are working closely together to take new plays AWAY from the theatre, out of the town centre, into people’s own communities.

Our next production, co-commissioned by TTA and The Brewhouse, is Whispering Willows, about Somerset’s willow industry. It will tour into primary schools across Somerset next year. This commission makes local history accessible to local young people, but it also has national significance too because it is one of 40 projects across the UK marking the 25th anniversary of the National Lottery.

Wassail also runs The Brewhouse’s Youth Theatre. Next year, we’re bringing five Youth Theatre groups together from across Somerset, for the first ever countywide Somerset Youth Theatre Festival which will take place at...The Brewhouse.

These are just some reasons why my, our, your theatre matters. It’s not always about What’s On. It’s about what sparks a place like The Brewhouse can ignite to take arts and culture out into the rest of the community. We’ve got a big community. Let’s be a healthy one.

Nick White, Founder and Director of Wassail Theatre Company