Take a look below at the exciting mix of activities and online resources from varying artists and organisations that could act as brilliant creative outlets for you and your family in these strange times.
Plus, do let us know if you would like to add to the list below by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of the activity, a short description, and any relevant links.
The Spark Arts for Children
In response to Covid-19 Vital Spark commissioned artists to create brand new short stories told digitally. Stories from Home created by Glenys Xavier, Santoshi Mann, Takeshi Matsumoto, Mellow Baku, Ines Sampaio, David Parkin, Ashok Mistry and Tia Chand-Corey will be released every Wednesday throughout May and June.
Speak Up! is a four-week online course using spoken word and performance to help you find your voice, creatively express what matters to you, and gain a Bronze Arts Award in the process! Online sessions will happen twice a week, led by writer, performer and youth theatre director Ben Mellor, with special guest artist Keisha Thompson.
Workshops will include creative writing and performing, watching and reviewing an online performance, researching an artist that inspires you and sharing your creative skills with each other. The course is open to anyone aged 14 – 18, is completely free, and will give UK residents the chance to achieve a nationally-accredited Bronze Arts Award qualification. Non-UK residents are welcome to join the course, and will receive a Collective Encounters certificate of completion.
Collective encounters – women in action
Women in Action is a new project that uses drama and creativity to harness women’s resilience, leadership and activism in their communities. Over two years, the project will provide opportunities for women aged 18+ to reflect on the role women play in community organising – by taking part in training, gathering and sharing seldom heard stories, and organising for positive change.
The Women in Action project was developed before the coronavirus pandemic. However, rather than postpone it we have refocused our plans in recognition of the ways this has already changed many women’s lives.
The Writers’ Block
Little Story Seekers on Youtube
– Mondays 10am 20 April – 20 July
Story, song and movement YOUTUBE sessions for very young children. FREE weekly, fun and interactive online video sessions for children aged 2-5 years and their parents and carers, based on story books and well known songs. No need to book, just tune in!
Primary Creative Writing Club – Weekly activity sheets –
Thursdays 23 April – 25 June
A FREE Creative Writing Club for 8-11 year olds who are passionate about writing. They will be providing fun and inspiration packed activity sheets to complete at home alone or with family. Expect imaginative and interactive exercises to keep your writing flowing. Released Thursdays.
Young Writers – online workshop
– Saturdays 2 May, 6 June, 4 July 10am-12pm
An online monthly session for young people who are brimming with ideas and stories and want to share them with like-minded, friendly young writers and readers. For donation.
Vibrant Matter and the Red River – A live online poetry reading
– 11 July 1-2pm
A FREE Live online poetry reading by John Clarke with a talk about his research project ‘ Listening to a Polluted River’. John Clark is senior lecturer in Creative Writing and poet of the collection ‘Boy Thing’ among others.He is currently working on a research and creative writing project exploring Cornwall’s Red River.
Young People’s Trust For the Environment
The Young People’s Trust For The Environment have hundreds of amazing resources for kids that help to teach children about the importance of looking after our environment and the need to develop and live by sustainable methods.
Into Film – Best family films to stream at home
Into Film have put together a series of recommendations for fantastic films that can be readily streamed at home for young people to enjoy. In this first edition, they’ve gathered together some of their favourite family films, and highlighted some reasons they believe them to be an educationally valuable watch.
The Book of Hopes
Completely free for all children and families, the extraordinary collection of short stories, poems, essays and pictures has contributions from more than 110 children’s writers and illustrators, including Michael Morpurgo, Lauren Child, Anthony Horowitz, Greg James, Chris Smith, Liz Pichon, Axel Scheffler, Francesca Simon and Jacqueline Wilson.
Kneehigh – Windows to the World
Kneehigh have been inspired and moved by the incredible creativity of those in isolation all around the world. From shadow puppet shows in Bologna, to mass singing in Spain, people are harnessing the power of creativity and bringing connection, hope, and moments of joy to people stuck inside, all from their windows.
They’ll be setting you some bonkers and brilliant creative challenges over the next few weeks. From puppet making to poetry, one of Kneehigh’s talented team will demonstrate a creative skill and set you a challenge at 9am on their YouTube channel. Share your results with #KneehighWindows and they’ll share their favourites.
Join Unicorn Theatre for their very first entirely digitally created theatre experience Anansi the Spider Re-spun for ages 3 – 8, streamed for free in partnership with The Guardian on their YouTube channel and on The Guardian’s website.
This fun online performance, featuring music, song and humour is an exciting new adventure. Subscribe to their YouTube channel to join the party!
Contained Art Challenges
Follow this page for ‘contained’ art challenges (available daily via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) designed to support you and your family during this period of containment. For kids and adults alike, they aim to bring a daily dose of creative inspiration, to be interpreted as you wish, using whatever materials you have to hand. No rules, just your creativity and imagination.
Real Ideas Organisation
Real Ideas is also producing a range of resources to support families at this time via their website and via social media. This includes webinars, links to resources and activities for children.
Le Navet Bete
Le Navet Bete uploaded two of their old shows to YouTube free of charge.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (2014 Christmas co-production with Barbican Theatre Plymouth, filmed at BTP in December 2014):
Dick Tracy (ACE funded 2015 show, filmed at the Plymouth Athenaeum in April 2018):
They have also offered a couple of their workshops to suit those who may be home schooling (one for primary and one for secondary school – but anyone can take part no matter of their age).
St Thomas Library
Steaming Live Events – Rhyme and Story time on Saturdays as well as an online catalogue of magazines to look through!
An archive made up of stories, images and sounds of what life is / was like in this moment. Share yours by emailing email@example.com
TED x 2020 virtual gathering
Sign up to this TEDx Exeter virtual gathering on the 17th April.
Visit RAMM virtually through Google Street View
Fun things to do for young visitors
Email Alix at Beyond Face and request to watch their production ‘2000 stories’ – email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Preston Street Union
Full performance of ‘Serge/Surge’ by Preston Street Union – a series of live actions on Exeter’s city walls.
Arts & Health South West
UK charity The Reading Agency and Libraries Connected have launched a new children’s mental health scheme as part of their Reading Well programme.
Ripple theatre collective is Derek Frood, Ruth Mitchell and David Prescott, 3 theatre makers based in South West England creating theatre and audio performance. Listen below to their FREE cemetery audio trail.
This year’s ‘Alibi Supports’ artist, Rosie Race, has just launched her YouTube channel. She will be posting fun improvised videos, a mini series and short films based on the themes of her larger works.
Buy the book of PaddleBoat Theatre’s ‘According to Arthur’, and enjoy their stories from your home.
Plus, take a look at their show content from ‘Clare Hollingworth and the Scoop of the Century’ and the education pack with fun tasks for children ages 8+.
The Wardrobe Ensemble
The Seekers Podcast: Seekers, we need you! Join Alph, Betty and Gammo on their adventures through space, time and beyond in this playful, interactive podcast for ages 3-8. A podcast brought to you by The Wardrobe Ensemble and The Wardrobe Theatre.
While Salisbury Playhouse and Salisbury Arts Centre are closed, and the 2020 Salisbury International Arts Festival has been cancelled, arts and entertainment still have an important part to play, offering entertainment and inspiration during these uncertain times. Over the summer, each week will see new additions to the WILTSHIRE CREATIVE CONNECTS programme – from interviews and behind-the-scenes films to family activities and support for local artists.
Thomas Johnson – Composer
Click below to access Tom’s soundcloud page, where you will be able to hear a wide variety of different kinds of music that he has written over the years.
And his website, where you can read about his work as a composer and musician, listen to a whole load of music he has written, and see some photos from the many shows he has been involved in.
Please note, this page will be updated regularly.