Blog 08/02/2023

Creativity, Workshops and Outreach | Sian Elin's Blog

Two women sat on the floor. Both are smiling and looking towards each other. There is a purple piece of paper between them and one is holding a pen in her hand.

Hello everyone! I'm Sian Elin, and I want to share the work I've been doing recently as Theatr Gen's Participation Coordinator.

At the end of 2022, a group of Theatr Gen team members and backstage experts went on a tour across Wales - from Llandudno to Rhydywaun - holding training workshops for teachers. These workshops, in partnership with WJEC, were created in response to a call from the education sector for more training in the technical theatre, such as light and sound, and it was so wonderful to see 60 teachers join us. Thank you all and I look forward to seeing you again next year.

Groups of people sat around two tables. They are looking off camera. One woman is very much in focus, and she is smiling. There are pieces of paper, pens and coffee cups on the table in front of them. Text on image reads "Thank you very much as a company for the GREAT provision.... The day was so useful and I'm really looking forward to bringing these ideas to the classroom - with every year, not just GCSE and A Level
Woman stands in a darkened room in front of a projector screen. Presentation slide on the screen behind her reads 'Stage Lighting Workshop'. She is holding a phone above her face and the torch is on, illuminating her face. She is looking out in front of her, not into the camera. People are sat around her on chairs.

Drama clubs and activities in the community are an important part of our work. I've been holding sessions with the Life Skills crew at Ysgol Bro Pedr, health and wellbeing sessions at Ysgol Plasmawr, leading our weekly drama clubs in conjunction with the West Carmarthenshire Initiative, and meeting a large number of you whilst chairing conversations around our last production, Tylwyth. So many of you came to see us - thank you! And I also had the opportunity to enjoy the enthusiastic company of Cardiff's ABC children's and young people's choir in the performances at Theatr y Sherman - what a privilege!

Mix of young people and adults in a classroom. Everyone is wearing a blue mask covering their mouths. The young people wear school uniforms and the older adults are wearing more formal clothing. A woman is crouching on the floor writing on a large piece of paper.
Three people in a room, one woman has her back to the camera. One of the women facing the camera is smiling and is wearing a plastic crown on her head. The other woman facing the camera is putting an accessory in her hair and is also smiling.

Speaking of enthusiastic people, we are gathering a group of young people aged 16 - 25 years old as our Young Advisers to advise us on our artistic program and our participation, marketing, and artistic development work. As a group, we meet 4 times a year and give everyone a safe place to voice opinions, offer feedback and, of course, look for opportunities to mentor these talented young people and share theatre skills. A heartfelt thank you to the crew - every conversation brings new ideas and perspectives to help us improve and develop our work and we love your company. If you are interested in joining us, you are very welcome to get in touch.

Screenshot of a Zoom call with 9 individuals. All cameras are on and the screen is split into three rows across and downwards with 9 rectangles containing each person's video feed

But, what’s next?

Myself, actress Kimberley Abodunrin and Director Carli de la Hughes will develop and offer creative workshops as a follow-up to the Betty Campbell show by Mewn Cymeriad.

Our Criw Creu project will be back, with the support of Llenyddiaeth Cymru. And this time, we will be working with pupils with additional learning needs from the Carmarthenshire area for a piece of work to be performed at this year's Urdd Eisteddfod.

Through the support of a large grant from the North Wales Substance Misuse Strategy Development team, we are restarting our national health and wellbeing project Ar y Dibyn which will run until March 2024 - more information to follow.

And of course, I'll be coordinating education workshops and learner talks to accompany Pijin / Pigeon, our next production on tour between 27 February and 25 March. If you are learning Welsh, you will receive a national lesson through your Welsh Learning Tutor, and if you are a teacher or a pupil/student, we have perfect workshops for you. Come and see this show - the story is so gripping from start to finish.

I look forward to seeing you all soon.

Sian Elin