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Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

Inspired Illustration

Monday, May 21st, 2018

Thursday evening started five weeks ago, maybe two months ago. Thursday evening started when I sent a speculative message to our friend/collaborator Mr. Courage. It started when I first thought that publishing all Stan’s Cafe’s old scripts would be a fun thing to do, but only if they appeared in a set of 22 very slim volumes.

“[Gareth] If you were teaching design at university would it be an interesting / useful / mutually beneficial / noteworthy undertaking for Stan’s Cafe to ‘commission’ you and your students to design the set”

On Thursday evening @ A E Harris over forty first year illustration students from Birmingham City University exhibited their response to our front cover design challenge. Each book in the series was allocated to two students who were furnished with scripts, essays and notes on influences from music, film, the visual arts, history and science. They had five weeks to explore, experiment and deliver a cover inspired the something in that content. The results were spectacular. Continue reading “Inspired Illustration” »

No longer live from the national theatre

Sunday, May 13th, 2018


Photo by Mark Barnett

On Friday I suffered a mild, but nevertheless unexpected attack of ‘post-show blues’. The affliction is widely acknowledged; after a period working intensely with a group of people on show the euphoria of the last night’s performance is often followed by aching induced by the show’s sudden absence and a sense of bereavement brought on by no longer being part of that closely bonded team.

I thought I had developed a cast-iron immunity as the stress of overlapping projects inoculates against the absence and full time colleagues and a loving family mask bereavement. However, travelling back from Leicester following the third and final performance of Live From The National Theatre I couldn’t quash a sense of the blues mixed with a certain melancholic satisfaction of a challenging mission accomplished. Continue reading “No longer live from the national theatre” »

De Montfort University Show

Monday, May 7th, 2018


Trailer made by final year students at De Montfort University.

We are down to the knuckle chewing last few days before Live From The National Theatre opens. This is our collaboration with final year students at De Montfort University in Leicester. There was a phase when we regularly made shows with university students but this is my first effort for a decade and with Craig, Lucy and Amy off to Dartington to help students at Plymouth University make their own shows it feels an apt moment to talk about making shows with students. Continue reading “De Montfort University Show” »

Creative Learning Recruitment

Saturday, March 17th, 2018

Moon_Landings_Project

With a busy term of work planned for summer 2018 we are recruiting five part-time freelance Creative Learning Associates to deliver a range of exciting projects in primary and secondary schools. We are looking for a variety of practitioners with specialisms including maths, drama, costume making and poetry and makers/sculptors.

To find our more about these roles and the particular projects please download the Creative Learning Associate Summer Call Out information sheet HERE.

To apply please send a C.V. and a covering letter explaining your interest in and suitability for the role(s), to our Creative Learning Producer – Lucy Nicholls, via email: lucy@stanscafe.co.uk.

Please also complete and send the equal opportunities monitoring form available HERE on our website.

The closing date for applications is Thursday 5th April, 6pm. Shortlisted candidates will be asked to attend a workshop on Monday 16th April.

You can discover more about the history and range of our Creative Learning work by visiting the Education and Training section of our website HERE

We look forward to hearing from you.

Unlocking Anti-Semitism

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

On Tuesday, Darius Jackson from the University College London, Centre for Holocaust Education, came to Saltley Academy and lead a twilight teacher training session called Unlocking Anti-Semitism. He was there because we are about to start working on The Merchant of Venice with the English Department and Year 8 students and it seemed sensible for us to arm ourselves with a bit of knowledge about the history of Anti-Semitism before we start. Continue reading “Unlocking Anti-Semitism” »

Dream like

Sunday, July 9th, 2017


Photo credit: Graeme Braidwood

The course of true love never did run smooth and neither did doing a Shakespeare play with 240 twelve and thirteen year olds, however last week was a lot less tempestuous than it could have been. Continue reading “Dream like” »

Shakespeare Recipe

Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

Here’s the recipe.

Take William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and a filleting knife. Cut away any material that can be possibly regarded as fat, leaving a lean narrative, anything remotely repetitive should be cut out and thrown away, retain a hint of poetry for the purposes of flavour. Continue reading “Shakespeare Recipe” »

Beginnings and Endings

Monday, June 26th, 2017

At the beginning of the year a small group of Year 6 children from Billesley Primary School joined us at our base in AE Harris to begin work on an online choose your own adventure story. We used the journey from their school to the Jewellery Quarter as inspiration for possible starting points, settings and characters for their stories. As I walked with them I realised that this was their last year in primary school and that they were one of the first groups of children we had worked with in our now five year long partnership with Billesley Primary.

I first met them when they were in Year Two and aged 6. Together we made a comic book version of Treasure Island and looking back at the pictures from that project you can see their personalities shining through. The following year they worked with us on a Weather Project documenting the daily conditions, writing poetry and creating costumes for a meteorological themed performance in the school hall. In Year Four we explored Ancient China with them. Last summer when they were in Year 5 we made Superfast Shakespeare, a quick fire rendering of five Shakespeare Plays performed outdoors in their playground and on the terrace of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford.

 
Now they are in Year 6 and a group of ten of these now 11 year olds have just finished creating The Amazing Adventures Of You. They wrote stories and learnt coding to create a hypertext adventure in which you, the reader can choose which path you want to choose through the story.

We wish these children and the rest of Year 6 at Billesley the very best for their future adventures and thank them for their work with us over the years.

 
Please read and enjoy the amazing adventure they have created for you HERE

Craig

Brookfields’ Primary Poets

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

We’ve just had clearance to share a new web-page with you. It documents our winter adventures with years 3 and 4 at Brookfields Primary School. Together we explored their local area taking photographs, we wrote lots of poems inspired by these photographs, created a newspaper with selection of these poems and performed a selection of this selection for parents in the school hall. It was great fun, the photographs and poems are lovely as you can see if you explore the page and the digital copy of the newspaper embedded above.

What a treat to work with such lovely young people and their great teachers.

Creative Learning Recruitment

Thursday, January 19th, 2017

the tempest

We are recruiting one or two part time freelance Creative Learning Associate/s to lead an after school Drama Club and work as an Assistant Director on a new school production.

We require an enthusiastic and imaginative person to lead a new after-school Drama Club which will take place twice a week in two different secondary schools within the Ward End area of East Birmingham. The clubs will culminate in the staging of three productions.

Following a production of The Tempest last year we are also staging a large-scale adapted version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at one of the schools and so are also seeking an Assistant Director to work with the Artistic and Associate Director to deliver this exciting and ambitious project.

The posts could be offered to the same person, or to two different individuals.
The after-school Drama Club begins the w/c 27th February 2017 and ends at Easter 2018. Rehearsals for A Midsummer Night’s Dream will run from mid- June to mid-July.

Please click here for further details of the posts and how to apply. As part of your application please also complete our Equal Opportunities monitoring form.

Should you have any further questions please contact our Creative Learning Producer Lucy Nicholls lucy@stanscafe.co.uk. Applications close on Tuesday 31st January.


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