Inspired by the role people’s theatres played in the recent Greek elections, this project tests the potential for a people’s theatre company for Brighton, involving the 92% who never or rarely go to publicly subsidised theatre, as both producers and consumers of contemporary performance work.
Our artists, Naomi Alexander (Director) Lou Cope (Dramaturg) and Gary Clarke (Movement Director), will work with a group of long-term unemployed adults in the city recruited through partnerships with local voluntary organisations. Working with them for a three-hour session each week the artists will explore the theme of austerity and it’s impact on their lives; cuts to public services, benefits reform and insecure/low paid work.
We will assess the viability of and demand for a people’s theatre company working with and for people who don’t normally go to the theatre. With the aim of producing work that would sit comfortably alongside the quality of contemporary performance produced by Duckie, Islington Community Theatre and Slung Low, this R&D phase will culminate in a 10 minute work-in-progress showing at the Dome Studio Theatre.
Brighton Dome is excited about the potential for this project, particularly given the significant dis-juncture in Brighton in terms of class and wealth, and our own objective of being a bridge to the arts for all.
Orla Flanagan, Theatre Producer, Brighton Dome and Festival
A provisional timeline
August: Outreach, publicity and partnership development
September-late October: weekly drop in workshops for long-term unemployed people
Late October–mid December: focused weekly workshops with small group of participants who can commit to develop 10 minutes of work-in-progress, which, if ready, will be shared at Brighton Dome before Christmas 2015.