The Word/Play project run by Take Art is the first of its kind in Somerset, using the relatively new and exciting art form of performance poetry to empower individuals and give them the freedom and encouragement to tell their stories. Over 40 participants with mental health or specific learning difficulties have taken part so far, writing, recording and performing incredible pieces of original poetry.
Debs, a participant from the Chard group said, “It’s been amazing, I have finally found my voice for the first time in my life.”
Each group has had nine sessions working with a lead and shadow performance poet, including UK spoken word stars Jonny Fluffypunk, Chris Redmond, Sally Jenkinson and Liv Torc.
Liv Torc who is lead poet on the project said, “It’s been an amazing journey, to see people with absolutely no self belief or confidence go from shoe gazing to writing and performing with passion, courage and genius. This really has been life changing stuff for everyone involved and such has been the success, some of the groups are going to continue to meet beyond the life of the project.”
Word/Play: the thing is… culminates of Tuesday 26 March with a big celebration performance at The Tacchi Morris Arts Centre, where all four groups will come together to share their achievements and perform their creations, many of which will be accompanied by multi media films and animations. Participant’s work is also available to read online at www.takeart.org/wordplay
Word/Play: the thing is… is the first phase of the two year Word/Play project, that aims to empower Somerset individuals and communities through performance poetry, forum theatre and community theatre. The project has been funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Lloyds TSB Foundation for England and Wales and Literature Works and is supported by Apples and Snakes, South Somerset Mind, Chard Intentional Peer Support, OpenStoryTellers and Somerset Skills and Learning.
If you would like more information, photos or a press pass to the event on Tues 26 March please call Louise Monks or Mark Helyar at Take Art on 01460 249450.