Worcestershire Arts Partnership Blog

Monday, 26 January 2015

Second Jump Start Theatre Night - 19th April 2015

Worcestershire Arts Partnership is very pleased to announce its second Jump Start Theatre Night. Following the great success of the November event, Jump Start Theatre will be happening once more at Malvern Cube on Sunday 19th April.


We are now looking for submissions for performance work to present on 19th April. The work can be text-based, devised or other performance, but should not have been performed anywhere else previously. Work should ideally be 10-15 minutes long, but we're pretty flexible. 


If you have something to submit to us, please contact Lee Farley - lee@perfectcircletheatre.com - for more details or to ask any questions.


If you're an actor, director or designer, or would be interested in helping out in any other capacity, please contact Lee at the above address.


Deadline for submissions is Friday 13th February. There will then be an initial meeting to discuss submissions, technical requirements etc.


Arts Council England Launches New Research Grants Programme 2015-18

Arts Council England Launches New Research Grants Programme 2015-18
The Research Grants Programme 2015-18 will help build on collective knowledge and deepen understanding of the impact of arts and culture and to promote greater collaboration and co-operation between the arts and cultural sector and research partners.
The central aims of the Programme are:
·  Furthering our knowledge: Deepening our understanding of the impact and benefits of arts and culture.
·  Increasing capacity: Promote greater collaboration and co-operation between the arts and cultural sector and research partners.
·  Working in partnership: Working in partnership with others to build and improve the evidence base around the impacts of arts and culture.
·  Influencing: Persuade commissioning authorities to invest in culture to bring positive cultural, social, educational and economic change.
The launch of this Programme follows findings from an evidence review, The value of arts and culture to people and society – an evidence review, which identified a gap in future commissions. The Programme will enable partnerships to explore the themes in depth and it is expected that findings will be used to demonstrate to Government and local authorities a better understanding of the impact investing in culture has on cultural, social, educational and economic change.
The application must be a joint collaboration between an arts and/or cultural organisation and a research partner. The arts and/or cultural organisation must be the lead applicant.
Eligible arts and cultural organisations include (but are not limited to):
·  Arts organisations
·  Museums
·  Libraries
·  Music education hubs
·  Local authority service departments
The research partner can be an individual, team or organisation with a minimum of three years’ experience of carrying out cultural, social, educational or economic research.
A total of £700,000 is available for 2015-16, with indicative budgets of £900,000 available for 2016-17 and 2017-18.
In the first round (2015-16) organisations can apply for funding for projects that last for up to three years. Applications can be made for grants between £50,000 and £100,000 per year.
Further information about the Research Grants programme can be found on the Arts Council website at http://www.artscouncil.org.uk/funding/apply-funding/apply-for-funding/research-grants-programme-2015-18/
The deadline for applications is 12 March 2015.

Tel:      07980 605948

Visit:    www.shawfunding.co.uk

Wheely Different presents Road To Oz A different Journey

Tickets in advance from company members or

Kidderminster Town Hall £5 each all seats. For group

rate contact Elaine wyreforest.slsw@yahoo.co.uk


April 9th 2pm & 7.30pm

April 10th 2pm & 7.30pm

The Grange, Great Malvern - Artists Opportunity

We have secured tenure of the premises with Malvern Hills DC and wish to offer to artists, sculptors, ceramists etc.(all manner of art, wood, metal, glass) the opportunity to present their works within the room settings at the above premises. We are happy to offer a fixed exhibition period for individuals and/or alternatively, works to be displayed within an eclectic mix.


As we have only taken up residence last week, we wish individuals who are interested in having the opportunity to have their work presented, to contact ourselves directly via our personal mobile numbers and/or our emails address's.


We would welcome your support in contacting any interested parties via your network, so we can getting established and budding new artists, off to a successful 2015!!


Additionally, you are welcome as is everybody to visit us at the premises to gauge the opportunity on offer, please call to book/ arrange a mutually convenient meeting time. All will be assured of a warm welcome.

We have secured tenure of the premises with Malvern Hills DC and wish to offer to artists, sculptors, ceramists etc.(all manner of art, wood, metal, glass) the opportunity to present their works within the room settings at the above premises. We are happy to offer a fixed exhibition period for individuals and/or alternatively, works to be displayed within an eclectic mix.


As we have only taken up residence last week, we wish individuals who are interested in having the opportunity to have their work presented, to contact ourselves directly via our personal mobile numbers and/or our emails address's.


We would welcome your support in contacting any interested parties via your network, so we can getting established and budding new artists, off to a successful 2015!!


Additionally, you are welcome as is everybody to visit us at the premises to gauge the opportunity on offer, please call to book/ arrange a mutually convenient meeting time. All will be assured of a warm welcome.



Kind regards,


Jean-Pierre Ellis 07785 241973


Neil Cooper 07981 247444



The Grange,

Grange Road

Great Malvern


WR14 2AY.


(phone line awaiting installation along with wi-fi connection /web site etc).



Dancefest Guest Workshops Spring 15

Over the Spring term we are having some guest workshops with dance artists from the midlands: Mickael Marso Riviere and Sioda Martin. Two workshops are for youth dancers as part of our Evolve project, and both Mickael and Sioda will be running workshops for dancers aged 21+.

Here is a link to the pages on our website where people can book and pay.



Theatre in Education Training Day from GEM West Midlands 17th Feb Library of Birmingham

We still have spaces on the Theatre in Education training day on 17th February at The Library of Birmingham. Speakers and topics are:


Matthew Ward, History Needs You:

'The play's the thing'

Seriously engaging fun - Historian and broadcaster Matthew Ward, of HistoryNeedsYou, will share his experiences in lighting the touch-paper of imagination, inspiring diverse audiences to have a passion for history and heritage. Matthew worked on three series of Horrible Histories and was the historian for the new BBC film 'Testament of Youth'. HistoryNeedsYou works with a wide variety of organisations including heritage and educational bodies, broadcasters and cultural groups. Warning: this presentation may contain jokes.


Pyn Stockman & Mandy Ross, Secret City Arts

Out of the archive and onto the stage - Creative performance making with children and young people using historical research and archive images.


Matt Hinks, Big Brum - , 'Talking about WW1 - The End of Reason 1914-1918'

A talk about the creative and TiE process used at Highbury and plans for the 'Taking 2' audio project.


Gemma Dhami, Museum Development Officer for Worcestershire & Rachel Shepherd – Avoncroft Museum, Bromsgrove

'Animating Worcestershire's Museums' runs from April 2014 to March 2015 and has been a collaborative project between 6 museums in Worcestershire to create a quality costumed interpretation offer in the county. As part of the project we have had a huge amount of costume produced, provided a number of training days and created an online volunteer recruitment portal.


Rachel Sharpe, Croome Redefined, Local Partnerships Officer

Developing  Live Interpretation – The do’s and the Don’ts!

Rachel has worked as a teacher, writer, director and outreach officer for the past 18 years.  From leading Europe’s largest cultural heritage site specific community performance, to her current role at the National Trust developing a live interpretation offer which tells Croome’s unique stories in a very different way!  Croome Encounters has been a huge success for the property, taking visitor experience to the max; not only rehearsing in front of visitors but making them part of the audition process.  Rachel’s workshop will take you through their journey, an honest account of what did and didn’t work with lessons you can apply at your own museum or property.


Do contact me if you would like to book a place. £10 members £15 non-members.


Best wishes,



Learning, Volunteering and Partnerships Manager

Museums Worcestershire

Co-Convenor for GEM West Midlands


Job Opportunity

Artist Brief for Bromsgrove CHIPP Shop



CHIPP Shop is an exciting, award winning and innovative arts and social care project run by Worcestershire County Council and the Worcestershire Arts Partnership which is aimed at providing high quality and enjoyable arts activities to adults who receive social care.  The project has been running successfully in Kidderminster and Evesham and has now  managed to secure some funding for a project in Bromsgrove.


CHIPP Shop runs on a weekly basis for a period of up to 8 weeks at a time. It combines different art forms and allows individuals to take part in various activities over a 2 hour period.  It is a great way of giving a high class arts experience to people who are traditionally excluded from such activities.


Adults pay £6 per session and either come alone or are accompanied by a family member / carer etc.  There is also a strong social element within CHIPP Shop and each session must contain enjoyable (and good humoured) activities.  Having said that, CHIPP Shop is first and foremost an arts project.


We are looking for 1 artist to run a weekly 2 hour workshop taking place on a Friday from the 6th March 2015 and running until Friday 1st May 2015 (excluding Good Friday on Friday 3rd April) from 10.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. in at least 1 or more of the following artistic systems:


ú   Drama / theatre

ú   Dance / movement

ú   Visual arts / film

ú   Creative writing

ú   Music / singing


How to apply



To apply, please send your CV and letter of no more than 2 sides of A4 outlining your skills, suitability for the job and the following information to Stephen Wilson, County Arts Officer, swilson@worcestershire.gov.uk:


ú   Evidence of previous experience working in an inclusive arts / social care environment

ú   Detailed description of what artistic skills you have

ú   Experience of running weekly workshops to a wide group of participants

ú   Have creative ideas for working with adults who have previously had very little access to the Arts




£100 per session or £800 in total although additional costs can be requested for materials. If however, numbers are low after the first 4 weeks / sessions, we will unfortunately have to end the project.


Closing date

Applications to be emailed to swilson@worcestershire.gov.uk by no later than 4pm on Friday 6th February 2015


Shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview and to do a 20 minute workshop with a group of service users on the morning of Friday 13th February in Bromsgrove.


Please note we would prefer to receive applications from artists based in or have a track record of working in the Worcestershire area.


If you require any further information or have any questions, please contact either Stephen Wilson, swilson@worcestershire.gov.uk, tel 01905 765754 or Diane Thomson, dethomson@worcestershire.gov.uk , tel 01905 765770.

Worcestershire Arts Partnership (WAP) is changing - Your opinions are important to us

Please see attached link from The Transition Group. Please treat this as an important piece of work regarding the development of the Worcestershire Arts Partnership. We would be grateful if  it was completed as soon as possible.

Worcestershire Arts Partnership (WAP) is changing.

Following a recent Arts Council England funded review, a transition group was appointed to help steer WAP to a future as an artist-led organisation.

The transition group believe that it's important the the voices of artists and arts organisations are central to this new vision of WAP and its role. As a consequence we have compiled this simple questionnaire to gauge your views.

We want to stress nothing has been decided. The questions below are genuinely open. We want to get a sense of what's important to you. When you are answering the questions remember that an artist-led WAP will only be as strong as those who are part of it. We hope everyone can benefit by being part of WAP - we can all work together to make it a success for everyone.

The results of this survey will inform an Open Space event at Kidderminster on 18 March. This will be a public opportunity for us all to talk, plan and shape the WAP we all want for the future.

Best wishes and thanks

Paul Sutton (C&T), Manda Graham (Meadow Arts), Rose Beeston (Dancefest), Jan Higgitt (Jestaminute Theatre Company), Steve Wilson (Worcestershire County Arts Officer).

Come along to The Hive on Saturday 7th February for an evening of ballet and dance. All ages welcome!

Come along to the Hive to see 'Two Old Instruments, a beautiful dance show, taking place at The Hive on Saturday 7th February at 7.30pm. The show is produced by Ballet in Small Spaces and all ages are welcome.

Ballet in Small Spaces presents


Two old instruments


Music:  Carl Friedrich Abel

Viola da gamba:  Jonathan Rees

Dance:  Susie Crow

Design:  Ellen Nabarro

Dress made by Roz Culling


1.         Prelude

2.         Andante – Minuet

3.         Allegro – departing from Monsieur Rameau

4.         Adagio – Portrait

5.         Allegro – two pints of claret and Jane Poitier

6.         Arpeggiata

7.         Minuetto – almost a waltz

8.         Allegro – La Guimard’s caprice

9.         Allegro – Strong women

10.       Adagio – just a little longer

11.       Allegretto – la bonne compagnie

12.       Allegro – country dance; Lambranzi’s jig

13.       Tempo di minuet


Carl Friedrich Abel (1723-1787) was one of the last virtuoso viol players before the instrument's twentieth-century revival. Born in Köthen, Saxony, he was taught by J.S. Bach in Leipzig's Thomasschule before moving to London, where he became close friends with one of J.S. Bach's sons, Johann Christian Bach. They founded a concert series in Soho Square, called the Bach-Abel concerts. 


Abel would give regular solo recitals on the viol, often improvising most or all of the recital, not infrequently under the influence of a lot of alcohol. The music in the so-called "Drexel manuscript", from which the music for Two old instruments is taken, is essentially a set of written-out improvisations - formally very free in most cases, with no clues in the manuscript as to a "correct" order for the pieces to be played in, or indeed as to the mood of many of them. 


If much of the music of the baroque is to be understood as dance music or as the musical equivalent of the classical art of rhetoric, then fifty years later we find these threads in a much freer musical language, where rules have been abandoned in favour of a more individualistic approach to musical expression which still maintains all of the gestural quality of baroque music - crying out to be made visible in dance.


Acknowledgements: Heartfelt thanks to Nicola Gaines Armitage for teaching us the minuet, Moira Goff for expert advice, Caroline Salem at The Space Clarence Mews for hosting work in progress in 2013, all our colleagues who gave feedback, Roger Tully for use of his studio, Ana Barbour for the loan of her skirt – and especially to all the BiSS Angels for their generosity in supporting this project …



Susie Crow: dance artist, choreographer, teacher. Danced with Royal and Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet becoming a soloist; now runs Ballet in Small Spaces (BiSS) in Oxford.  Twice a finalist in the Madrid Choreographic Competition; ballets for SWRB, Dance Advance, National Youth Dance and Ballet companies, Black Maria for Green Box Productions. Works for BiSS include solos for Lisia Moala and Debbie Camp in 2008 and 2009; works inspired by Dante for Cambridge and Oxford 2009-10; Inside Out and Commedia 2011. On-going collaborations with musicians, dancers and visual artists include improvisation work and cross-art research projects DEC Drawing Dance and Ancient Dance in Modern Dancers, and with Jennifer Jackson on Dancing the Invisible – Late Work. She holds an MA in Dance Studies, runs the popular blog Oxford Dance Writers, and is undertaking research into the ballet class for a PhD at Roehampton University.


Jonathan Rees: Bristol born cellist and gamba player with leading UK period performance ensembles, including recent appearances as principal cellist and gamba soloist with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and La Nuova Musica.  Solo performances in the Leeds International chamber music series, Lichfield Festival, Bristol’s Colston Hall, BBC Proms composer portrait of Colin Matthews and Birmingham Opera Company’s 2012 performance of Stockhausen’s “Mittwoch aus Licht.” Chamber musician at Cheltenham, Lake District, York and Trondheim Music Festivals; has played as principal cellist with the Manchester Camerata, and with the LSO, London Sinfonietta and Aurora orchestra. He is enthusiastically involved with music outreach work with children and adults of all ages. Before post-graduate studies with Mats Lidstrom and Jonathan Manson at the Royal Academy of Music, Jonathan gained a first class degree in German and French from Cambridge University where he is currently employed as a researcher into seventeenth-century French street song and also teaches baroque cello.


Ellen Nabarro:  Oxford based theatre designer.  Graduated from Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama 2008 with Principal’s Award.  Shows include Hay Fever, UK premiere of High School Musical 2, Merrily We Roll Along etc.  Resident Designer for The Musical Theatre Academy; designed Inside Out and Commedia for BiSS in 2011. Assistant designer for Bunny Christie currently working on Blurred Lines at National Theatre.  Associate Designer on Donmar production of Julius Caesar in New York.


Ballet in Small Spaces (BiSS) makes and presents ballet based work for small and unconventional spaces in response to its local environment.  As well as refining an understanding of ballet’s form and expression, it aims to reach out to a wider audience, tapping into local enthusiasm for dance through performances, classes and projects, and drawing in dancers at all stages of development from young students to mature professionals. Since emerging in Oxford from Arts Council funded research in 2004, BiSS has devised and presented projects for a range of settings including Stravinsky in Miniature at the Holywell Music Room (2004), Dance and Music Showcase for St. Edward’s Arts Programme (2005); Long Hot Summer for performances in Dancin’ Oxford, OxDox Documentary Film Festival and London (2007), two editions of The Solos Project at Burton Taylor Studio (2008-9), Dante in the Chapel in Cambridge and Mansfield College Oxford (2010), and double bill of Inside Out and Commedia which toured Oxfordshire venues in 2011.

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Calling All Writers


The Short Story Competition, which is a key element of Evesham’s Second AsparaWriting Festival, is now officially launched and the organisers are very much looking forward to a great response.  This is a wonderful opportunity for any aspiring writer.  Entries must be an unpublished short story of no more than 6,000 words (or 3,000 words for junior entries), written in English, a mystery set in the Heart of England, with a hint of Simon de Montfort.  That should provide plenty of scope for some really original stories.

There are two categories, based on the entrant’s age on 23rd April (this date being Shakespeare’s birth and death day, and also the start of the Asparagus Festival: adult (aged 17+) and junior (age 12-16).  The fee per entry is £10 for adults and £5 for juniors.  Entry fees are non-refundable. 

The closing date for receipt of entries is strictly 11.59pm on Sunday 1st March 2015.

Entries can be submitted by post or online and will be judged anonymously by a distinguished panel of judges.  Full details of how to enter can be found on our website: http://asparawritingfestival.co.uk/short-stories/short-story-competition

There will be trophies for the winners, plus a £100 prize for the adult winner and a £20 book token for the junior winner; the ten short-listed adult entries, together with the winning junior entry will be included in a printed anthology, AsparaWriting 2015.  The results of the competition will be announced at the Grand Finale of the AsparaWriting Festival on Saturday 13th June 2015, and we are delighted that Dr Ian Mortimer will be present to make the awards.

Further information about other elements of the AsparaWriting Festival will also be available on the website as arrangements are confirmed.  If you have any queries about any aspect of the Short Story Competition or the AsparaWriting Festival, please contact Sue Jenkinson on 01386 765566.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Arts Funding available

I am pleased to inform you that we will be running a grants application process.

There are two grant forms available.

Strategic Grants – open to all arts organisations and individuals to use as funding for their core work. Maximum amount to be applied for will be £2,000.

The application form and guidance notes  and will  be on-line from Jan 26th 2015.  The application form needs to be sent to me by February 23rd at 1pm and the decision date will be from the week beginning 16th March 2015. The total pot available is approximately £15,000 to £20,000

Partnership Grants – these are grants to be used for to match fund project bids to partners such as The Arts Council. The application form and guidance notes will be on line from Jan 26th 2015 and the cut off dates for applying are listed on the application form. The total pot available is approximately £2,500.

I know that these pots of money continue to be reduced and I can only apologise for this.

You may also wish to look at the Councillor Divisional Funding as well which can be found on

I am also attaching the application forms and guidance notes too.

Thanks for all your on-going support through these very difficult times.


Stephen Wilson

County Arts Officer

01905 765754

07850 923358

Mouth and Music - Tuesday 10th February 7.30

For a love-themed special, Mouth and Music spoken word and music night will take place in the intimate Boars Head Gallery, upstairs in the Boars Head pub in Worcester Street, Kidderminster. Surrounded by an exhibition called "Museum of Women", 2 outstanding women will entertain, along with open mic performers who sign up on the night. Poet Lorna Meehan brings her unique brand of candid hilarity and singer Kate Wragg will woo with her haunting vocals and quirky lyrics. Heather Wastie is MC and the date is Tuesday 10th February 7.30. See www.mouthandmusic.co.uk.




Please come along to study Chilcott's Requiem with us led by David Lawrence on Saturday 13 June 2015 in North Bromsgrove High School hall, School Drive, Bromsgrove, B60 1BA

Full details including the programme, cost, and registration / application form are on the website at workshopday.uk

David Lawrence has a rare gift to communicate, encourage and enthuse. Every singer's contribution is precious to him and he gets the most out of each of us. He soon gets us all taking part singing together accurately synched, harmonised and in tune and having such great fun in the process!
Bob Chilcott's music has echoes of Fauré and Duruflé but even closer association with Rutter. He is seeped in the choral tradition having been a choirboy and then famously a member of the Kings Singers.

He knows how to write a beautiful tune, but also to inject passion and excitement with sections of rhythmic energy. His 2010 Requiem is an enormously satisfying piece and deserves to be heard - it has already been performed in more than 30 countries.

Reviews and excerpts can be found on workshopday.uk

David Lawrence's inspirational leadship and Bob Chilcott's sublime music - a match made in heaven! We do hope to see you in Bromsgrove on June 13. . . . .

Monday, 19 January 2015

New Batik workshops

New Batik Workshops from eekbatik
Spend a creatively indulgent day with Sarah and Marie-Therese
Exploring batik art in a beautiful spacious studio near the Malvern hills.
New Year Workshop
Spend a day designing and making your own batik on Indonesian cotton. Learn how to crack the wax, mix colour and experiment with different wax tools. Take home a completed artwork ready to put on the wall.
January 31st or February 1st   2015 10am – 4-30pm
£70 per day to include refreshments, delicious homemade lunch and cake.
To book a place and for more information contact info@eekbatik.com or phone  M    01684 573684     Sarah  01684 561068







Monday, 12 January 2015

Wychavon Community Awards

Do you know someone who has given their own time for the benefit of people living in your town or village? Do you know someone that puts a lot of time and dedication into achieving their goals, who makes your community proud? Who has gone that extra mile in supporting the community? Who has helped make your town or village a better place to live?


There is an arts category and it would be great to acknowledge all the wonderful work going on in our district.


The deadline is looming which is next Wednesday 14th January.


You can download an application form from www.wychavon.gov.uk/recognitionaward






Jenny Davis

Arts Development Officer

Civic Centre

Queen Elizabeth Drive


WR10 1PT

01386 565396

07967 640820

Normal days worked Tues, Wed, Thurs

MARKETING - PILOT Nights- 2015/16 Programme

Happy New Year from the PILOT Nights team!

We are delighted to announce our programme for 2015/16. All the event and submission dates are below so get those diaries at the ready!
Thursday 19th March 2015 | PILOT Nights @ AE HARRIS
Submissions open today! See below for more details
Submissions close: 30th January 2015
Thursday 8th October 2015 | PILOT Nights @ ARENA THEATRE
Submissions open: 20th July 2015
Submissions close: 7th September 2015

Thursday 14th January 2016 | PILOT Nights @ BELGRADE THEATRE
Submissions open: 12th November 2015
Submissions close: 3rd December 2015

There will also be another PILOT Sites this year for sited and/or outdoor work-in-progress and this will be announced at the end of the month so keep your eyes peeled for that VERY exciting announcement!
Applications now open for the first PILOT Night of 2015!

On Thursday 19th March PILOT Nights will land at AE Harris. This is a chance for contemporary theatre makers to present up to 20 minutes of new, work-in-progress material, in front of a real live audience and industry peers.

Artists will receive a small fee, professional photo and video documentation of their work, and feedback from the audience. It will also be a great opportunity to create links within the industry and meet future potential arts partners.

For selection criteria and to make a submission click here
Deadline for submissions: Friday 30th January 2015 at 5pm

Open to theatre makers from across the UK, PILOT Nights take place in venues across the West Midlands. Each event is programmed and managed by a Co-Pilot, in conjunction with the core PILOT Nights team. Co-Pilots are practising artists with an interest in producing/curating. Having a different Co-Pilot for each event ensures the programme remains diverse and exciting, and places artists at the heart of PILOT Nights.

PILOT Nights encourages applications from diverse sections of the theatre-making community and welcomes applications from disabled artists. Please contact PILOT Nights if you would like the application form in alternative formats, or have any alternative access needs.

The host venue for this event is AE Harris, a studio theatre venue in a disused warehouse in the Jewellery Quarter area of Birmingham, managed by the wonderful Stan's Café Theatre Company. PILOT nights has visited AE Harris many times before and we're looking forward to landing there once more!

If you have any questions or concerns please email pilotnights@gmail.com.

Performance date: Thursday 19th March 2015, AE Harris, 110 Northwood Street, Birmingham, B3 1SZ
Check out AE Harris's website here