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Storytelling from performance to print with a programme for National Theatre Wales

Before I Leave traditional tabloid newspaper for National Theater Wales

Founded in 2010, National Theatre Wales brings storytellers together in unconventional settings – "from forests to beaches, from aircraft hangars to post-industrial towns, village halls to nightclubs." Their latest production, Before I Leave, takes place in a library that serves as a meeting place for individuals living with dementia.

Inspired by the Cym Taf choir, writer Patrick Jones says the play is "a testament to the healing power of song." It's also a celebration of the strength in community and the production took an "uninhibited, direct and communal approach – from performance through to print."

Before I Leave traditional tabloid newspaper for National Theater Wales

National Theatre Wales worked with designer Paul Thomas of Bwtîc to create a fittingly egalitarian and tactile newsprint programme. "It follows the text’s lead," says Thomas. "Resolutely for the people, for one and all – a key connection for a play championing the necessity of community and humanity."

Before I Leave traditional tabloid newspaper for National Theater Wales

Thomas devised three separate covers for the programme to profile central cast members in a bold, two-colour palette. "Each cover is a spotlight," he says, "giving every character centre stage to tell their own story."

Before I Leave traditional tabloid newspaper for National Theater Wales

"The traditional mini format was perfect for reading in the theatre space – stitched together, with its smaller size reducing the risk of elbow-knocking nuisance or paper-folding fiddling. A tidy little take-home and an enduring campaign for our cause."

Before I Leave ran at the Sherman Theatre in Cardiff from 27 May – 11 June 2016. Find out what's on next by following @ntwtweets.

Learn more about our traditional mini newspapers. Stapled and trimmed like a magazine – perfect for catalogues, comics, and zines. These booklet-sized newspapers are a great way to tell your story, with the vibrant colours that come from traditional newspaper printing.

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