Reach Inclusive Arts are one of several organisations based at the Wyvern Theatre. Each year the company present their work in a showcase on the Wyvern stage. We sat down with Helen Whelehan from the company to find out more about the show and the company.
What is the Making It Art Show?
Making it ART 2018 is a show on the main stage of the Wyvern Theatre on Thursday 8th March at 1pm by young disabled people from Swindon. It is produced by Reach Inclusive Arts and funded by BBC Children in Need.
The performance is the culmination of 6 weeks of workshops which enable young disabled people to consider their identity, what makes them who they are and how they would like to live their adult lives. Three Swindon Schools are taking part, Crowdys Hill, Commonweal and Uplands. The performers will be joined onstage by Pudsey Bear from BBC Children in Need. The show is free (group bookings by arrangement – call 01793 520318) and is an inspirational and entertaining spectacle of talent and creativity.
Reach Inclusive Arts work with local organisations that offer accessible activities and further education opportunities for disabled people to produce a programme that accompanies the event and is available to attending audience.
Who is involved in the show and how long does the show take to put together?
Students from Commonweal, Crowdys Hill, and Uplands schools spend six weeks working with professional theatre practitioners. Reach engage the arts workers who are all experienced at working with young people who have special needs. These arts teams go into the schools and help the students to devise original drama pieces that express their own ideas and explore their aspirations and personal ambitions. They create short drama pieces that are performed during the afternoon of the 9th March.
What Reach Arts projects are you working on in 2018?
As well as MAKING IT ART 2018 Thursday 8th March 1pm – 2.30pm Reach Inclusive Arts has a range of projects planned for 2017.
- 16th February 2018 1pm Street Arts Theatre performance, a short outdoor drama that will take place on the raised area outside the Wyvern Theatre. This is the culmination of a weeklong project working with young people from the in-patient NHS unit at Marlborough House.
- 29th June 7pm – 9pm Big Hat Cabaret in The Great Western Hall at Steam, The Museum of the Great Western Railway. This is an inclusive cabaret style performance that involves several local groups of people with disabilities plus some without. It includes music, drama, dance, film and comedy.
- Crafty Friends Art group – ongoing – a group of older people, some with mental health issues, who meet every Tuesday morning at the Wyvern Theatre blue room studio space, 10.30am – 12.30pm.
- Partners Theatre Company – ongoing – a performance group of adults with learning disabilities, physical disabilities some with mental health issues and some with sensory loss. They meet every Monday morning in the drama studio at the Wyvern Theatre, 10.15am – 12.45pm.
How you can find out more information about the work Reach Inclusive Arts does?
Reach Inclusive Arts is a Swindon based arts charity that has been in existence since 1983 and supports learning disabled people and those who have used mental health services. Our aim is to create opportunities for people to experience art as a therapeutic medium and create exciting and authentic work which says something about them and their life experience.
We aim to leave a lasting sense of value and cultural acceptance for people with disabiltites through exhibition and performance.
We believe there is a need to provide supported and meaningful activities that help people increase their self-esteem and assertiveness.
We would welcome your involvement with Reach. This could be by volunteering to help deliver projects, join our board of trustees or through donations to help support the work of the charity.
It is easy to do all of these, you can speak to any member of the Reach team about how to get involved. Our office is based at the Wyvern Theatre and it is staffed on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. You can phone us on 01793 520318 or you can email email@example.com and you can donate by visiting: http://www.reachinclusivearts.org.uk and follow the link to the donate page.