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Anna Herrmann
Head of Education Clean Break
Richard Taylor OBE 
Damilola Trust  

1. The work your Charity is delivering to the community and the youths in general can not be over emphasised. It has gone a long way to educate and create awareness in the minds of the hard to reach about the dangers of carrying knives and more importantly, the danger of getting involved or joining gangs and youth violence.

2. The benefits that had been gained by the youths through the use of Arts as a platform to illustrate the dangers and consequences of knife crme is in no doubt unexpressable. It has assist the troupe to send messages of the mind to the audience. It often also bring out the emotional minds of the watchers.

3. I was privileged to take part during rehearsals during the production of the play Labelled along with the then CEO of DTT, Mr Mike Jervis. We saw the contents of the play as well written out, while it was teaching the youths who are into gangs and drugs and those who wants to get rich quick without working hard to have a second thought about their future.

Finally, I wish to conclude this short piece by appealling to the youths to embrass knowlege that they have been given on a plater of gold by imbibing education as foremost in their life. I am aware that a lot of lessons must have been learnt over the past decade after the tragic murder of Damilola Taylor, but I insist that there are more challenges to be faced and to be learnt as you grow into maturity and independence.

Anna has been working in theatre and education for over sixteen years, an actor-teacher, workshop leader, youth theatre director and arts manager, focusing on theatre and drama as a tool for personal, social and political change, both in the UK and abroad.


Since 2002 she has been the Head of Education at Clean Break, a company specialising in theatre education and new writing with women with experience of the criminal justice system. She has an MA in Drama and Education and a Postgraduate Certificate in Race and Ethnic Relations. Anna is the co-author of Making a Leap: Theatre of Empowerment: a practical handbook in creating issue based theatre with young people facing disadvantage.    


“I was really honoured to be invited to be a patron for Hardknock Productions. Over the four years that I have known Sylvia I have been continually impressed and inspired by her work. Through Hardknock they have created an organisation that I believe can really make a significant difference to the lives of young people.”  

Hardknock Productions is a beacon of hope defiantly flying in the face of the coalition government's perfidious assault on community services. Her projects empower young people to transform their own lives and turn away from the negative influences that ensnare so many of our children today. I am deeply honoured and proud to be associated with hardknock productions. After 20 years of teaching young people at risk, it's nice to know hardknocks has taken up the baton and operating so effectively on the frontline !

“I am delighted and honoured to be working with Hardknock Productions, who perform such vital and necessary work in our communities. They truly care about the potential of young people, and represent hope, and the redemptive power of creativity.”     

Che Walker
Actor and Playwright

As a youth theatre company working with young people, creative professionals and collaberating with organisations can be challenging. We have had the guidance of our patrons from the very begining and feel indebted by their continued support and expert knowledge.    


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