We work with a range of community partners to deliver targeted projects within the locality and beyond that are diverse, engaging and fully inclusive.show me
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We are committed to bringing artists and the community together with provocative productions and creative colabs.
If you are interested booking one of our community project workshops, please contact our Engagement Manager, Angela Athay-Hunt.
Objects Without Borders in Weston-super-Mare
Objects Without Borders is a practice-based research project that investigates the role of puppetry and object performance in connecting people across borders, boundaries and differences. The project draws on the knowledge and experience of people living on and between the borders and boundaries of society including refugees and people from deprived communities.
We know how powerful puppetry and object performance can be in applied theatre and arts contexts. What we want to get at through this project is: How do objects help us to cross boundaries? What are the differences and unique benefits in the ways that objects help us connect across boundaries of communication, identity and communities? What are the objects doing for us?
The project ran six pilot sessions over Zoom between May-July 2021, connecting artists, community theatre facilitators and puppeteers from Jordan, the Czech Republic and the UK. Participants included Seenaryo, a UK NGO working in Jordan; Dafa Puppet Theatre from Prague; Theatre Orchard from Weston-super-Mare, UK; Wattle and Daub from Bristol (UK); Bristol-based producer Rachel McNally; and Sam the Artist, a Palestinian refugee visual calligraphy artist based in Bristol.
Across the six sessions each of us shared our existing creative practice, used objects to get to know each other, played with objects within and across the digital space, and collectively created an object-based devising process.
Find out more about Objects without Borders on their website
‘Whirligig!’ Festival of Outdoor Arts
‘Whirligig!’ takes place on Weston-super-Mare’s Italian Gardens on the second Saturday of July. Thank you to all those who make the Festival such a twirling success!
Below is a film created for us by Nick Sutton, which captures the day perfectly.
‘Whirligig!’ is supported by Without Walls – Working with festivals and artists and bringing fantastic outdoor arts to people in towns and cities across the UK. Find out more at www.withoutwalls.uk.com
Whirligig! won the NOEA Best Small Festival of the Year, 2019
In June 2021, we launched Storyboat 700+1, an exciting heritage project celebrating the 700 year anniversary of St Peter’s Church in Portishead and supported by Theatre Orchard’s Engagement programme. Originally planned to take place to mark the anniversary in June 2020 and postponed due to Covid-19, the initiative finally set sail and welcomed people on board for a heart-felt celebration!
We worked safely below deck to gather stories from the local community, including schools and Church groups. Written and drawn on specially designed cardboard boat templates, the stories created a flotilla sculpture of hundreds of boats to be displayed within St Peter’s Church to celebrate the 700 year history of this extraordinary place and its people.
Storyboat 700+ is funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and supported by Theatre Orchard.
We work hard to deliver our creative programme of events, outreach and engagement, but we would struggle without the generosity of our wonderful volunteers. It’s the perfect way to give something back to the community whilst stock piling a whole host of memorable experiences.
If you would like to get involved as a Volunteer with Theatre Orchard, we would truly love to hear from you!
Support a project
We present performances and events in a variety of places and spaces throughout the region, from local theatre venues to end of piers and quarries and we are always expanding our programme of outdoor work.
If you or your business would like to a project, please ping us a message with your thoughts.
Hang on in there! We are a small team with a region-wide focus so it can sometimes take a little while to get back to you, but we will!