The child as leader is central to Polyglot’s philosophy, and underpins all of our work.

An illustration. Three children play around large white letters that spell out 'PIPS', with 'Polyglot Inspiring People Society' handwritten underneath. The child on the left has pink hair and wears a yellow jumpsuit, the middle child wears a grey bear suit and holds a roll of tape above their head, and the child on the right has black hair and wears a blue dress.

Polyglot Inspiring People Society (PIPS) is a group of young people who contribute to the testing of ideas in the creation of new work, and to the company’s continuing education of how young people think and collaborate. PIPS are invited to participate in, and give feedback on, works in development and shows already in programming circulation. They offer their opinions and their creativity, energy and joy.

In 2020, PIPS Online was created to keep contact with the group, and to share ideas and creativity in lockdown. This led to mail outs, in which PIPS are provided with materials and ideas to continue creating at home. The PIPS are also invited to special events, shows and gatherings.

The philosophy of PIPS extends to Polyglot’s consultation and testing of new work in schools. Each year Polyglot is fortunate to forge new relationships with young people in schools, in the early stages of developing a new work. In line with Polyglot’s child-led approach to making work, these collaborations are an invaluable part of the process.

PIPS is an opportunity for Polyglot to expand on its rare and valuable connection with children and foster a community of astute and deep-thinking young people. It is an opportunity for fun, enrichment, connection and true collaboration. Making an ongoing commitment to PIPS not only continues to nourish the future of Polyglot, it also has the potential to contribute to a wider theatrical culture of respect and equality, with the development of new leaders and creative thinkers.

“Polyglot lets us have a voice in what they should show. They don’t let adults override young people’s voices. It’s really good that Polyglot has a society where young people get to say what they think. Sometimes we feel that adults think that they know what young people want to see in shows which we think is sometimes untrue… PIPS is all about letting your mind be free and to be creative. Through all my experiences at PIPS, I find that I use a different part of my brain which I don’t use much while being at school. The part which lets my mind to be free and do what it wants to do.” (Louka and Min, PIPS Alumni)

PIPS illustration by Nick Barlow, Polyglot Artist