Youth Festival

A vital & exciting part of the Festival programme, our youth programme is well established, with Shooting Roots marking its 30th year & Stream of Sound celebrating 25 this year!

Shooting Roots bring us a brilliant week of craft, dance, theatre, band & storytelling workshops for 12-17 year olds, leading up to some special performance opportunities at the Manor Theatre and around the town, as well as the friendship-forging collaboration with the superb Stream Of Sound choir and some great events at Betsy’s.

Based in a new, more central home by All Saints Church, youth events throughout the Festival week including sessions galore plus workshops:

Song – Join Stream of Sound’s Harmonious Throng and be swept up in the glorious unaccompanied singing of songs.

Craft Day: Newbies and old hands alike can get stuck in on the Sunday with our Craft day, learning exciting traditional craft skills and making something to take home. Get stuck in for the whole day or pop along for a shorter time, either way there will be something for you. Come and learn a new crafty skill.

Theatre  – A great workshop for making new friends, gaining confidence and having a laugh while working to together to create some high quality theatre! Expect games, larks, tableaus, devising, ridiculous plots and much more!

Storytelling – No experience necessary, come and try your hand at the traditional art of storytelling, with Shooting Roots’ unique twist. There will also be a chance for you to put your new skills into practice at a Storyround at the end of the week.

Dance – Bring your friends and your enthusiasm, and we’ll provide the rest in order to learn some cool folk dances to perform in our very own spot on the Esplanade on the final Friday!

Funky World Band – Bring along your instruments to join our team in creating a great big funky band, with whole group pieces and small arrangements, ready to perform in our showcase on Thursday. All abilities welcome.


Can I dip in and out of the workshops? We’d say you’d would get the most out of coming to all days of their chosen workshop/s, especially if they want to perform, but workshops are are flexible to suit whoever turns up on the day.

Do I need any experience? No experience needed in any of the workshops. For the Funky World Band we usually say you need to be able to play your instrument, but we can always teach percussion if someone turns up without.

Do I have to perform at the end of the week? If performance isn’t your thing there’s no pressure. It’s entirely optional, in a relaxed and encouraging atmosphere.

What if I don’t know anyone? You soon will! Making new friends is all part of the Youth Festival vibe.

New Callers Showcase: Your chance to call as part of the Shooting Roots celebration ceilidh. An opportunity for any ceilidh callers not previously booked at Sidmouth. Deadline for applications: 24th May 5pm and you’ll hear back by the 31st May

Check out the application form

Alongside Stream of Sound choir, we pleased to be joined by more of the county’s finest young folkies from NYFTE (National Youth Folklore Troupe of England), National Youth Folk Ensemble (NYFE), and Halsway Youth Folk – there’s going to be some unforgettable sessions!

Shooting Roots is an organisation run by and for young people, offering creative and participatory folk workshops at festivals and other events. In a nutshell it’s all about generating opportunities for young people to perform, develop friendships and access the folk arts. We’ll be helping them celebrate 30 years in style with a special alumni  event – get in touch if you have enjoyed Shooting Roots workshops at Sidmouth over any of the past 3 decades.

Stream of Sound are also celebrating 25 years and will be bringing a new show to mark the occasion – we can’t wait!