During lockdown, Highlights Rural Touring Scheme commissioned musician Rob Heron , storyteller Nick Hennessey and the team behind the sell-out theatre show Ladies That Bus to each create a short piece for radio. Created by rural touring artists, specifically for rural audiences, these pieces of work will be broadcast first on BBC Radio Cumbria’s The Arty Show, next Monday 14 September before being made available online.
Musician Rob Heron hails from Penrith, and has played many Highlights venues with his Newcastle based Tea Pad Orchestra. He brings a taste of ‘Newcastle’s finest swing-honkytonk- rockabilly band (fRoots)’ to the broadcast.
South Lakeland based Nick Hennessey forges a bridge between the song and the spoken word, as an internationally acclaimed storyteller, playwright, folk singer, song writer and musician.
In early 2020, Ladies That Bus sold out venues across Cumbria with their comedy drama based on the 555 bus route from Lancaster to Keswick.
BBC Radio Cumbria presenter Helen Millican will also interview the artists, village hall promoters and audience members during the show.
Highlights has partnered with rural touring schemes Arts Out West , Cumbria and Carn to Cove , Cornwall to ensure that offline arts content can be provided to rural communities at this time. With funding from the National Rural Touring Forum .
This is an open call for artists to provide a mix of digital and non-digital content for the second season of ‘In Your House’ from October to December 2020. We hope to receive applications for brilliant small ideas as well as larger scale projects!
Deadline for expressions of interest 31 July 2020
Artists selected by 21 August 2020
Successful proposals must be ready by 5th October, with project plan and promotional material, and the work ready for release to the public between the 5th October and 18th December 2020.
“In Your House” a new programme of exciting, fun and interesting arts to enjoy from home! We will programme something for all ages across a range of art forms including; Music, Storytelling, Theatre, Radio Drama, Visual Art, Magic, Animation, Poetry and Craft.
The fee is between £600 and £4,000 per artist (excluding VAT).
The next Arts Alive at Home event will be on Thursday 18th June at 2.30 pm, where you can watch The Fairy’s Kiss performed by Scottish Ballet.
A gorgeous one-act ballet inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale ‘The Ice Maiden’, and composed by Stravinsky. Thanks to an ingenious new design by Gary Harris, Scottish Ballet was able to revive the production in 2017 and capture it for online audiences.
After receiving a mysterious call during lockdown, a librarian and her housemates set out on a quest to discover the meaning of adventure.
Ever wanted to go to the moon, become a spy or an inventor?
Using everyday props, this imaginative and interactive audio play offers you a chance to join in with activities to become part of the story.
There are three 10 minute episodes, each looks at the life of a real character and their adventure. It is a great way to become immersed in a story and experience a sense of travel from home.
‘My daughter and I loved the idea of being taken on a journey out of our kitchen with some great surprises along the way. Her eyes literally popped when she did the water and glass experiment all by herself! It was a welcome release from screens to delve into our imaginations through audio.‘ Gillian Farrell, Mum to Maeve aged 5
Perfect for families, particularly for those with children aged 5-10, all 3 episodes of The Quest will be available on the Applause website to enjoy together, for free, from Friday 12th June https://applause.org.uk/whats-coming-out-of-the-box-the-quest/ This project was supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. It was also supported by Applause Rural Touring.
Black Country Touring have been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
BCT is one of 230 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year.
Frances Land, Black Country Touring, Co-Artistic Director Said: “This is a real boost for us, particularly as we struggle to adapt to lockdown and social distancing, when the community venues we work with are closed. Our incredible team has included 251 volunteers and we are delighted that our work has been recognised. It’s a real tribute to the hard work and commitment our volunteers bring to the community.”
Black Country Touring’s volunteers range from 7 to 70+ and can be with the organisation from 6 months to many years.
They train and support their volunteers to share the joys of having the arts as part of their lives with others in their community. The team enables local people, of all ages and backgrounds, to see high-quality theatre, dance and film in their local area at an affordable price, often in areas of high deprivation with very few professional theatres and venues.
Their volunteer programme supports and empowers people to be decision makers and create special, shared experiences that would not happen otherwise. When programming professional theatre, dance and cinema events in local venues for their community, the volunteers are supported by Black Country Touring at every step of promoting the event.
Volunteers learn how to select professional touring theatre shows and build a programme of events tailored to the local venue they use. Venues include libraries, schools and community centres.
Many people who attend would have no contact with the performing arts without Black Country Touring and its volunteers. Often these events are the only link with the outside world for people at risk of loneliness and isolation.
BCT could not operate at all without their enthusiastic volunteers. They are the people on the ground in the heart of the community who select, organise and promote the shows their audiences want to see. Black Country Touring support them to develop their skills, confidence and experience of organising events.
A key part of the work is about raising aspirations and improving people’s wellbeing through volunteering, by connecting them with other people in their local community and reducing the risk of isolation. Something that is very important during this time.
Julie Mckirdy B.E.M, Senior supervisor at Smethwick Town Libraries and BCT board member said: “I am over the moon to hear this wonderful news today that Black Country touring have been awarded the prestigious Queens voluntary award. BCT thoroughly deserve this accolade, they work so hard to bring the arts to Sandwell and the rest of the Black country.
All the team have helped with my personal development within the arts and played a massive part in how Thimblemill Library has become known and respected today within the arts cultural scene. So on behalf of all the community of Thimblemill library and beyond I would like to congratulate each and all at BCT and well done you wonderful people.”
Black Country Touring will receive the award from Mr John Crabtree OBE, Lord Lieutenant of the West Midlands later this summer and two volunteers from Black Country Touring will attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May 2021, along with other recipients of this year’s Award.
Peter Knott, Area Director for Arts Council England added his congratulations: “Huge congratulations to Black Country Touring and we’re delighted that their work with volunteers has been recognised at the very highest level possible. Black Country Touring is funded by the National Lottery; this is thanks to Lottery players so it’s right that so many people share the benefits.
The Queen’s award pays tribute to the volunteers ongoing commitment, people who offer their own time and experience ensuring that the role of arts and culture touches as many people as possible. Great work to everyone at Black Country Touring”.
Black Country Touring is hugely grateful to Arts Council England, Sandwell Council, Wolverhampton City Council and all their other funders and partners that make their work possible.
POUND ARTS CORSHAM TO HOST DIGITAL ALTERNATIVE TO BLUE SKY FESTIVAL
8-14 JUNE 2020
It is with enormous pleasure that
Pound Arts has launched Blue Sky & Beyond – an exclusively online festival
featuring an incredible line-up of comedy, music, theatre, spoken word,
workshops and visual artists, all of which it is hoped will provide moments of reconnection
to the wider communities that we are all missing in these extraordinary times.
Working with the incredible
Gobblegook Theatre we are delighted to present CLOUDSCAPES (LIVE) –
originally a piece of outdoor theatre, this has been re-developed for a digital
audience. On Saturday 13 June, 3pm you are invited to join us, to stop and
cloud gaze and consider your place in the world for what will be an enjoyable,
uplifting and reflective experience.
Pound Arts Director Russ Tunney says,
“In Lockdown, music, books and other forms of storytelling have kept me sane.
In short, art has kept me sane. I am sure it is the same for everyone. We can’t
bring art in person to our wonderful communities at the moment but with Blue
Sky & Beyond we will bring it digitally and give people some memorable
escapist moments to savour.”
Pound Arts will welcome back some
festival favourites from previous years, as well as a host of new artists:
The critically lauded contemporary
folk singer Rachael Dadd returns from her home to yours to deliver an
exclusive set. There will also be a music ‘stage’ featuring Pound Arts
favourites, Broken Bones Matilda, Chloe
Foy, Emily Barker, Gwilym Bowen
Rhys,Lo Barnes, Mishra,Nuala
Honan, Rosie Hood, The Little
Unsaid, Tiny Ruins, Tobias Ben Jacob and
many more incredible musicians sharing beautiful songs from their homes.
We are delighted to announce that
Lefty Scum will be presenting an evening of music, comedy and revolutionary
socialism! Join three of the UK’s most joyfully rabble-rousing acts in Josie
Long, Jonny and the Baptists, and acclaimed political folkster Grace Petrie for
what will no doubt be a riotous time.
If you are more of a bass-hunter, the
world’s original family ravers and now pioneers of virtual kitchen raves Big
Fish Little Fish will invite the family in for an afternoon of absolute
Rounding off the festival, on the
Sunday you are invited to come and listen to poets and lose yourself amongst
this selection of incredible wordsmiths, thinkers, dreamers and Pound Arts’
friends. John Hegley, John Osborne,
Jonny Fluffypunk, Kiesha Thompson, Liv Torc, Luke Wright, Molly
Naylor, Rosy Carrick & Toby Thompson will be amongst those that feature.
include: Drag Queen Story Hour UK with Aida H Dee. Rock the Tots (a
firm favourite of local pre-schoolers and their families). The Merry Maker (aka
Arj Manuelpillai), poet and artist, who will rap a merry rhyme round selected topics
with input from the community.
activities include: Cut-out and colour your own paper version of your town in Fold Your Town by Anna Bruder & A
Line Art or take part in a virtual community exhibition, Share Your Sky.
Blue Sky & Beyond is supported by
Arts Council England, Corsham Town Council, Haine & Smith Opticians and
Wiltshire Council. All Blue Sky & Beyond events will be free, however
donations – in lieu of tickets – can be made by texting BLUESKYto 70970 to donate £5.
For more information on Blue Sky and Beyond and the full
line-up of events please visit blueskyfestival.org.uk.
Arts Alive have curated a programme of online performances for communities in Shropshire and Herefordshire. ArtsAlive@Home will feature a mixture of pre-recorded shows and live-streamed events, most of which are being held exclusively for Arts Alive. The rural touring scheme has had to cancel its normal programme of events, which includes Flicks in the Sticks, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Organisers have said they are committed to keep bringing arts events to local communities in rural areas. They are asking audiences to tune in on a specific date and time so that viewers can collectively enjoy a post-show chat with one of the performers via group video conferencing.
Cerin Mills, Live Events Programmer at Arts
Alive, said, “We think our audience will really enjoy sharing the experience of
an online show. They can watch the fabulous events from the comfort of their
sofa, organise their own interval drinks, share their response with the other
audience members, and speak to the performers after the show. Whilst there is
no replacing the atmosphere of a live show, we believe this will be a really
unique and enriching community experience, for people of all ages.”
The line up includes ‘The Fairy’s Kiss’ from the Scottish ballet, with a post-show chat with principal dancer, Beth Kingsley-Garner. The award-winning Puppet State Theatre will be sharing a recording of their show ‘The Man who Planted Trees’ which was recorded at The Edinburgh Fringe 2019. Songwriter and performer Louise Jordan will share extracts from ‘Florence’, a one-woman show which is about Florence Nightingale, with a live Q&A with Louise after the show.
Dave Gaydon, Head of Programming for The Cheltenham
Jazz Festival has curated a one-hour online special featuring four
of the performers who were due to feature at the festival, which was cancelled
following the Covid-19 outbreak. Artists will each perform a live 15-minute set
from their home. He adds, “We are thrilled to be involved in the ArtsAlive@Home programme. It is a
desperate time for the events and festival world, not only for the cancelled
events but also for the diminished availability of live cultural experiences
for the public. It is a pleasure to provide a mini online festival for the Arts
Alive community – they can expect some quality jazz delivered straight to their
Details of all the events are listed on
the website (www.artsalive.co.uk) and details will be released on
the ‘Arts Alive & Flicks in the Sticks’ Facebook page as well.
Arts Alive is the rural touring scheme for Shropshire and Herefordshire, bringing a full
range of professional performances – theatre, music, dance, comedy, and
children’s shows – to village halls and other community venues throughout the
two counties. www.artsalive.co.uk
Spot On Lancashire, who bring professional performances to rural communities and library spaces all over the county, have launched a brand new digital project.
In partnership with Lancashire Libraries, Spot On bring great art and stories to your couch, your kitchen, and your back garden – basically wherever you choose!
The first mini-show to be broadcast was for children and families. Theatre Fideri Fidera’s ‘Meet Ugg ‘n’ Ogg’ is an adaptation of their live show which was due to be hosted in Lancashire over Easter. Spot On worked alongside the theatre company to create an exclusive performance for Lancashire audiences which aired at 3pm on Tuesday 21st April via the Spot On Facebook page, website and YouTube channel and the programme of events continues to grow each week.
Programme Manager, Lyndsey Wilson explains: “Spot On Stories are ten-minute micro shows made just for you by some of the fantastic artists that have, or should have, toured with Spot On. These are bite-sized moments, made for the people of Lancashire, so that for 10 minutes, wherever you are, you can lose yourself in a really good story.”
“Some will be for grown-ups, some will be for children. Some will be spoken, some will be sung. But all of them are made with love and a passion for telling you a story!”
They intend to present two shows per week until July. Tuesday afternoons will be stories for children and families, and Thursdays will be something a little more grown-up. Once the shows are uploaded, they’ll be available to watch on the Spot On website for 30 days so if you miss one or you want to watch on repeat you can.
Spot On Lancashire is a countywide service which enables people living in remote and rural communities to enjoy high quality live arts events on their doorstep. Spot On do this by working in partnership with over 200 volunteers and appear in over 50 different small places each year.
Spot On enables volunteers to choose and host professional performances and our support makes shows which could only otherwise be seen in urban arts centres, available to smaller communities.
Spot On is delivered by Blackburn-based Culturapedia, as part of the Cheshire Lancashire Touring Partnership with Lancashire County Council and Cheshire Rural Touring Arts.
Spot On is part of the national portfolio of the Arts Council England and is also invested in by Lancashire County Council and the districts of Fylde, Ribble Valley, Wyre and the Unitary Authority of Blackburn with Darwen.
ARTSREACH MARKETING OFFICER Artsreach is a charity that arranges tours of theatre, dance and music to rural communities across Dorset and is part of Arts Council England’s national portfolio.
We are looking for a flexible, creative individual with drive and passion to assist with the promotion and enhancement of the Artsreach brand through maximising the benefits of social media and responding to the needs of our audiences, promoters and investors. It is a role with much room for creative expression in an environment of great changes in the charity sector in general.
You will be working within a small, experienced and highly – motivated team to provide a professional service, working with a network of volunteers, and accessible to the public. Your key role within the team will be to develop and grow the Artsreach brand, devise, implement and report on the agreed strategic marketing plan, drive the charity’s social media networks, lead on database management, lead on preparation and distribution of publicity material, and attend Artsreach events as required.
This is a permanent contract and would ideally suit a recent marketing graduate wanting to gain experience in the not – for – profit sector.
The position is subject to a 6 month probationary period, based on 37.5 hours per week and the starting salary is £ 19,554 How to Apply: Please download/complete the Artsreach Job Application Form found on our website: https://artsreach.co.uk/news/marketing – vacancy This should be returned, with an accompanying letter of application, either by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to Artsreach, The Little Keep, Barrack Rd, Dorchester DT1 1SQ
Closing date for app lications: 12pm on 6th December
Thanks to funding from the BFI (British Film Institute), rural cinema Flicks in the Sticks has been able to employ five young people as Cultural Coordinators in a bid to reach and engage new audiences through film events specifically for young adults.
Based in and around market towns in Shropshire and Herefordshire; Whitchurch, Shrewsbury, Hereford, Leominster and also Welshpool, the Coordinators aim to work closely with groups of local young people to organise film screenings for those aged 16-30.
The funding has given jobs to young people who are passionate about film and are keen to organise events with, and support attendance by, other young people with similar interests. It is important to Flicks in the Sticks that we expand our audiences to include more people under 35.
We hope to learn from the new audiences how we can make Flicks more accessible to under-represented groups and offer a much more social event, moving away from the trend of watching films on a phone or tablet. With the introduction of streaming sites like Netflix, iPlayer and YouTube and the costs of travelling and going to mainstream cinema, rural young adults are increasingly engaging with film at home.
Director of Arts Alive, Ian Kerry says;
“We are really excited to have received this support from the BFI, and we are now in a position to employ some young people to deliver this great project. If you are between 16 and 30 and want to screen films in a venue of your choice now is your chance to get in touch!”
Tune in to BBC Radio Shropshire to hear Cultural Coordinators Polly and Jo on The Seven O’Clock Show: Thursday 14th November, 7pm
Flicks in the Sticks, the flagship project of rural touring scheme Arts Alive, delivers over 1000 high quality film events to village hall and community venues across Shropshire, Herefordshire and beyond. In 2018 alone, 48,000 people attended a Flicks screening. This year Flicks in the Sticks celebrates 20 years of bringing a wide range of cultural film to local audiences.
If you are interested in putting on a film screening for people between the ages of 18-30, please contact email@example.com
This short form is designed to help you asses whether or not your show is Rural Touring ready. We take you through the very basic needs of rural touring and give you a list of things to consider. We also point you to other helpful resources and pages along the way. Please note this form is NOT a way of submitting your show to be considered for touring but should be used as a tool to equip yourself with the knowledge you need to approach schemes.