FREE Artist talk from John Russell in Medway

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On Tuesday 23rd February at 6.15pm in the stunning setting of the recently refurbished Royal Dockyard Church in the atmospheric Historic Dockyard Chatham, acclaimed artist John Russell will give a free talk about his work as part of the Artist Talk series from the School of Music & Fine Art at the University of Kent, Medway.

Formerly a member (and founder) of the subversive London art collective BANK (whose antics included faxing galleries “corrected” versions of their own press releases back to them), artist Russell has continued to make art on his own which likewise casts a gimlet eye on the doings of the art world and culture at large. The centrepiece of his recent NY exhibition consists of a video made up of animated gif files that tell the story of a near future, where humans have learned to extend life by downloading consciousness into the brains of small animals. A tale of technological transformation, SQRRL is also a chilling allegory for our own time.

Recent solo shows include “SQRRL” Bridget Donahue Gallery, New York, 2016,  Jexus, MOTINTERNATIONAL Brussels 2012; Angel of History: I can see for miles, Focal Point Gallery Southend 2011; and Ocean Pose, Matts Gallery London.

Editor of Frozen Tears, Russell is Professor in Fine Art at the University of Reading and is Director of Research for Art.  His research interests are: “Affect. Affirmation. Figurality. Event. Art/politics. Art/philosophy. Art/language. Class. Performativity. Fiction/fictioning. Visualisation. Digital media. Philosophy. Bad philosophy. Printed matter. Staging”

Although the talk is free and everyone is welcome, please book via: https://alumni.kent.ac.uk/events/john-russell-feb-2016

IMAGE CREDIT: Untitled (Abstraction of Labour Time/ External Recurrence/Monad), 2010. John Russell

2016 Visiting Artist Talks launch with Jaki Irvine on 26 January

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On Tuesday 26th January, 2016 in the stunning Royal Dockyard Church, The Historic Dockyard Chatham, from 6.15pm to 8pm, the School of Music and Fine Art is thrilled to welcome Jaki Irvine, an artist working in mixed media, but mainly film, video and writing. She is represented by Frith Street Gallery, London.

Originally Dublin based but now living in Mexico City, she represented Ireland at the 1997 Venice Biennale. Overheard conversations and human incidents, casually observed, often form the starting point for Jaki Irvine’s work. She weaves these real events with fictitious narratives to produce haunting films and videos. Her work makes use of the potential discontinuity between moving image, musical score and narrator to undermine any sense of linear narrative. Irvine’s work suggests the fragmented mysterious and often absurd nature of the human condition.

The talk is part of an exciting series of visiting artists, writers, filmmakers, curators and performers who will talk about their work. Each speaker is renowned in their own field and uses imagery, materials and processes differently to pose distinct and searching questions to address the urgent concerns of our age. Our guests will provide a detailed presentation of their work, share their experiences of making work and also their involvement in navigating the complex multifaceted artworld.

Our Visiting Artists have national and international profiles, many are multi-award winners and their practices include multimedia installation, moving image, sound, photography, performance, socially engaged practice, painting, sculpture, publishing and curating.

Free to attend, and everyone welcome but please book via link: https://alumni.kent.ac.uk/events/jaki-irvine-jan-2016

Image credit: Production still from Se Compra: Siné.,  2014. Jaki Irvine.

 

 

Three FREE December concerts showcasing students from the School of Music & Fine Art

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A wide range of vibrant music making activities is available at The School of Music & Fine Art, from Chamber Choir and jazz ensembles through to the World Percussion Ensemble and the large-scale Choir and Band, comprising students from across the Medway campus. In December we will be showcasing the talent and skills of our students in a range of concerts that are free to attend.

On Wednesday December 9th in the Galvanising Workshop at the Historic Dockyard Chatham, part of the University of Kent’s Medway campus, students from the School of Music & Fine Art perform music from a range of traditions. The Jazz Improvisation Ensemble  will perform works by Juan Tizol, Fats Waller and Joe Harriott.  There will be a performance of Frank Martin’s exceptionally beautiful Piano Quintet in D Minor and the concert will be framed by works with a festive flavour sung by the Chamber Choir.  This free concert starts at 7.30pm.

In the following week, there is also a chance to hear students from the BMus and MA Music programmes studying band and ensemble playing.  This Ensemble Performance Lunchtime Concert is on Tuesday December 15th from 12 noon until 1pm in the Galvanising Workshop, and will include performances of jazz and contemporary popular music.

Finally, from 8pm until late on Thursday December 17th the award winning bar and bistro Cargo Bar at Liberty Quays welcomes bands from the School of Music & Fine Art to perform sets of original material and covers.  This stunning nautical and industrial-style venue is the perfect place to sample some of the best live music acts the area has to offer.  The gigs are free to attend, always draw a crowd and have a fantastic atmosphere. The SMFA gig at Cargo last Easter was a huge success, with three bands from across the stages of the School of Music and Fine Art giving powerful and exciting performances.

Says Director of Music Programmes and Lecturer in Music, Dr Ben Curry, “I always feel immensely proud and excited when I see our students perform. Whether they are playing innovative pop, soul and jazz or pulling off a challenging work from the classical tradition, they always give compelling performances.”

For more information on any of these concerts, go to https://www.kent.ac.uk/smfa/events.html?view_by=month&date=20151222&category=&tag=

The School of Music & Fine Art offers a wide range of degrees which include: BMus Music, BSc Music Technology, BMus Popular Music, and NEW joint honours BA (Hons) Music and English & American Studies, and BSc (Hons) Music Technology and Computing; MA Music, MA Music Composition, MA Popular Music, MA Music Technology, PhD Music and PhD Music Technology

POSTER CREDIT: Tayler Cronly-Dillon

 

Event and Experience Design students create stunning multimedia installations and performances at Fort Amherst

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On Thursday December 10th, from 1.30pm-4pm, students from the School of Music & Fine Art on the BA (Hons) Event and Experience Design create a choreographed journey through stunning multimedia installations and performances in explorative response to the physical, historical and social contexts of the atmospheric Fort Amherst, a Napoleonic defence system of underground tunnels and above ground deep trench earthworks known as the lines. This innovative event, which is open to the public and free to attend, produces an interpretive and immersive tour of the spaces and environs.

Based at the Historic Dockyard Chatham, part of the University of Kent’s Medway campus, the Event and Experience Design programme is the only undergraduate degree in the UK dedicated to developing skilled practitioners for the creative events industry for entertainment, commercial, heritage, tourism and hospitality environments. The programme, which is offered both full and part time, has the 5th highest score for overall student satisfaction in the latest National Student Survey (NSS) 2015, and 100% of graduates are in employment or further study within 6 months of graduating, with 75% in professional or managerial posts (UniStats 2015).

Says Peter Hatton, Lecturer, “This project at Fort Amherst challenges the students in every way; creatively, logistically and technically. It is a great opportunity for them to devise, produce and present an event unique to its location for an audience. We are very grateful for all the support of the staff at the Fort.”

For more information on the event on December 10th at Fort Amherst, Khartoum Road, Chatham ME4 4UB go to: http://www.kent.ac.uk/smfa/events.html?eid=15093&view_by=day&date=20151210&category=&tag=

 

IMAGE CAPTION: Interactive Game, Pek Ling Liam, 2013. Photo Peter Hatton

 

 

Creatabot Creative Workshops

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Natasha Steer, Founder of Creatabot, is a Creative Practitioner and specialises in using creativity to improve health, wellbeing and the promotion of self care.

Workshops can include anything from hands on creative workshops to community consultations and environment design sessions. Clients so far have included MHS Homes, Medway Council, UCA, The Improving Mental Health Provision, The University of Kent, Medway Youth Trust, Mid Kent College, Langley House Trust, Rochester Farmers Market and Medway Youth Service, Her Majesty’s Prison Service, The Prince’s Trust, Ashford Borough Council, AMAT UK, Age UK, Medway Home Education, See & Create and Medway Youth Service.

To see if Natasha can help you with an event or group contact her on natasha@creatabot.co.uk

Recommendations can be seen on LinkedIn at https://uk.linkedin.com/in/natashasteer

Follow Creatabot on Instagram – www.instagram.com/creatabot/

Natasha has Enhanced DBS clearance with Medway Council and has been trained in Emergency First Aid At Work as well as Adult and Youth Mental Health First Aid.

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Natasha actively recycles waste from her workshops and trys to use sustainable and recycled materials as much as possible.

Urban Expressions – New Street-based Arts Event – 27th-29th August 2015 – Chatham

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Urban Expression is an exciting new event aimed at celebrating different forms of streetbased arts, activity and creativity in locations around Chatham. A variety of activities will be happening in different locations around Chatham High Street, including: MC’ing, busking, parkour, dance, spoken word, street-art, eco-crafts, skateboarding and skating on the 27th and 28th August from 1-5pm.

Activities are aimed at young people aged 12 years plus – but are not exclusive to young people.

In preparation we will be running workshops over the next few weeks, keep an eye on our Facebook Page for more information.

Like and share the Facebook page to get updates on workshops and activities on the lead up to the event: https://www.facebook.com/urbanexressionsmedway


As part of Urban Expressions, The Urban Playground Team are bringing their parkour / dance performance STEAM: bOing! to Sun Pier, Chatham on the 27thand 28th August from 1-5pm.

As part of Urban Expressions, bOing! comes to Medway on Thu 27 & Fri 28 August this year, when the brilliant Urban Playground Team bring their energetic Performance-Parkour to Sun Pier, Chatham.

The Urban Playground Team will also be performing at bOing! (University of Kent) as part of the bOINg! weekend on 29 & 30 August.

STEAM

The Urban Playground Team are the original Performance-Parkour (2PK) company and are coming to Medway with an energetic dance-theatre piece unlike anything you’ve seen before.

In STEAM, The Urban Playground Team reimagine the life of a steam locomotive through scenes inspired by the silent movies of Buster Keaton, the gun fights of the old West and the rooftop stunts of James Bond.

Combining contemporary & urban dance with Parkour and physical theatre STEAM is brought to Medway by Gulbenkian as part of the bOing!2015 International Family Festival, Canterbury (29&30 Aug) and forms part of Urban Expressions in Chatham.

Performances will be at:

Thu 27 Aug – 1pm

Thu 27 Aug – 3.45pm
Fri 28 Aug – 1pm
Fri 28 Aug – 3.45pm

Recommended for all ages. Performance run-time: 20 mins.

Workshops and freeplay will take place between performances.

STEAM is presented in partnership with Medway Council.

Medway Youth Service Summer Activities 2015

This summer Medway Youth Service will be offering a variety of activities from youth centres and parks across the area. Outdoor sessions are free and other sessions cost between 50p and £1.00 per session.

Activities may include; Urban Arts, Break-dancing, Film, Archery, Cookery, Climbing, Graffiti murals, Music, Football and many more.

Downloadable Summer Activity Programs:

Medway West Summer Activities will be taking place in the following parks:

  • Hook Meadow, Weedswood, Chatham, 3 to 6 August, 1pm to 4pm
  • Northcote Rec, Strood, 10 to 13 August, 1pm to 4pm
  • Jacksons Field, Rochester, 17 to 20 August, 1pm to 4pm

Summer poster

Medway East Summer Activities Gillingham Area activities will be taking place at Woodlands Youth Centre, Woodlands Road, Gillingham on various dates.

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Woodlands will also be celebrating its 50th birthday with live music and a BBQ, by hosting the popular Garden Party event on the 25 July from 3pm to 9.30pm, FREE ENTRY.

Garden Party 2015

If your into skating, BMXing, scooters or street-art, join the ‘Cozzie Summer Jam’ at Cossington Park on
1 August, 12pm to 5pm.

Gillingham and Twydall Sports Week will be happening from the 3 to 7 August at venues including Medway Park, Skinner Street and Beechings Park Twydall.

Medway Youth Service Sports Week

For young people in the Chatham area StreetChat are organising a variety of activities, visit their Facebook page to find out more: www.facebook.com/streetchat.detachedproject

Please note: some activities have limited places.

For more information contact your local youth centre

or email: youth.enquiries@medway.gov.uk

UCA Student Reveals Sneaky Secrets About Her Degree Exhibition

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May and June are always one of the most creative months of my year, Summer supposedly starts, Fuse festival ignites and the local creative universities, UCA Chatham and the University of Kent’s School of Music and Fine Art reveal the incredible work students have been creating during their studies through brilliant free open days.

There have been a number of pieces that stood out to me, and hopefully one by one I can speak to each of those students, but the first graduate I would like to tell you more about is Louise Collins from UCA in Chatham.

Louise’s work was on quite a hidden floor of UCA, along with other Photography students work. I love painting stars and supernovas so her work caught my eye. Her write up divulged how during her research she had discovered that her Great Grandfather has been an amateur astronomer and although having already decided to concentrate on the cosmos for her final work, this had added another depth to her display as she was able to add photos of her Great Grandfather and diary entries that she had found of his.

Quite something eh? But there is a secret to be revealed, the whole story is made up. I spoke to Louise to find out more.

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So Louise what were you studying at UCA?

I was studying a BA in Contemporary Photography.

How did you come about creating this body of work?

I am very inspired by the work of Joan Fontcuberta and I wanted to create something that played on the idea of what you believe to be real, whether you see something as fact or fiction. I had the idea to develop photographs in the darkroom to look older than they actually were, but also needed an archive to back them up – so had to fabricate a whole story with evidence. So along with the photographs I created images that looked like photographs of the stars and also diary entries.

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Who was the man in your photographs?

It was my dad! He was really excited about being involved!

How did you create the supposed cosmos photographs?

They were created using bleach and bicarbonate of soda.

What made you decide to study photography?

I had studied Art at A-Level but felt I wasn’t advanced enough to earn a living through Fine-Art, so decide to move forward with Photography instead.

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What are you plans looking forward?

I am saving up to live and work in London, I would like to work in the creative industries within design, ideally as a problem solver. I really enjoy working as a team, so know I would be happier working within an organisation.

Thank you to Louise for speaking about your work with me.

To contact her email louiselindacollins@hotmail.com

By Natasha Steer

Fuse Festival 2015 Spark Commissions Open For Submissions

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The deadline for submissions is 12 noon on Monday 2nd  February 2015.

The FUSE Medway Festival taking place from 12th to 14th June, is a free, outdoor arts festival for the people of Medway and visitors. For one weekend in June, Medway’s public spaces are transformed, creating exciting, unexpected happenings and spectacular events.

FUSE is committed to the development of new work and to supporting artists. It is offering two local arts commissions for 2015 of up to £5,000 and one South East commission of up to £5,000.

The commission provides an opportunity to explore new ways of working and to develop your practice.  The criteria are as follows:

Applicants for the local commissions must be living or working in Medway.
Projects must take place in Medway.
Projects must be specifically designed for the outdoors.
Applications are welcomed from any art form.
Projects must have an element of community engagement, which can be delivered in the 2 weeks prior to the main festival.
Projects must be accessible and innovative.
The work must be delivered within a realistic budget.
The finished performance / installation must take place between 12 – 14 June.

Applications can be submitted by post (FUSE Medway Festival, Arts Team, The Brook Theatre, Old Town Hall, Chatham, Kent ME4 4SE) or by e-mail to fuse@medway.gov.uk.  The deadline for submissions is 12 noon on Monday 2nd  February 2015.  Shortlisted applicants will be invited to interview week commencing 9th February 2015.

For further information and a full copy of the commission brief and an application form, please contact fuse@medway.gov.uk or call 01634 338319.

Medway’s Creative Spaces

Medway is lucky enough to have multiple arts spaces that each have something unique to offer. If you would like to book a days tour (for a small donation to the Creatabot project) please contact Natasha on natasha@creatabot.co.uk

Nucleus Arts

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Nucleus Arts is the Award Winning flagship arts organisation founded by the Halpern Charitable Foundation. The Foundation was the brainchild of the late Hilary Halpern and it was his dream to promote the Arts in Medway and Kent. Nucleus Arts has become the cultural and creative heart of Kent & Medway over the past 12 years and focuses on affordability, accessibility and excellence in the Arts. They run multiple workshops, events and training programmes.

The main centre is at 272 High Street, Chatham, where the gallery, conference room and main artists studios are based. The artists open studios are held here every 1st Saturday of the month for all to attend for free.

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Nucleus Arts also have creative studio space in Military Road, Chatham, Rochester High Street (which also includes retail space) and Lower Stone Street, Maidstone. All spaces have a lovely cafe managed by Cafe Nucleus.

Nucleus Arts are working in collaboration with multiple local charities on their Arts Inclusive programme to make sure the arts can be accessible to all.

Sun Pier House

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This Community Interest Company was formed in 2012 to support and promote the best of Medway’s talent, providing a base for established and start-up businesses in the creative sector.

Within the building, there is a large exhibition gallery, tea room, events space, hire rooms, artist studios, open plan creative office space with hot desk facilities, all enjoying a glorious panoramic view of the River Medway.

Sun Pier House CIC actively promotes the businesses working within Medway’s creative community, encouraging them to grow and develop to their full potential. Sun Pier House is right next to Sun Pier, Medway Street, Chatham.

POP Creative Space

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POP is an abandoned shop turned into a Creative space in the heart of Chatham, Medway. The shop has been funded by EU and Recreate and hosts various free events and exhibitions throughout the year. POP is at 64 – 66 High Street, Chatham.

Unravel and Unwind

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Unravel and Unwind are working to develop a “country cottage” style craft drop in centre for crafters of all abilities, ages, background and culture where they can come and craft while they socialise-practice-teach-learn.

Their aim is to create a friendly open environment,”a crafting home from home” ) where local crafters & families can practice, learn, teach and sell their crafts. A place where skills can be shared and new ideas encouraging community engagement, increasing social well-being, removing isolation and possibly mentoring transitions into employment. They are based at Intra Arts, 337-341 High Street, Rochester.

Intra Arts

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INTRA is a Medway based arts venue, hosting creative events, classes, activities and studios, and offering one of the best collections in Kent of specialist arts equipment accessible to the general public – especially specialist printing equipment.

The not for profit company Intra Arts Ltd. was formed in 2014 when they took on the former Spemco building in Rochester High Street. This Art Deco fronted, Victorian building is much loved in the historic area of ‘Chatham Intra’. Their aim is to provide an arts programme, creative opportunities and education in a space that welcomes people of all ages, abilities and circumstances. They are based at 337-341 High Street, Rochester.

Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know: Rochester Literature Festival 2014

September 25th – October 5th 2014

The Rochester Literature Festival is proud to present its second annual festival, Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know.

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We’re delighted to be opening this year with an hilarious and heart-warming one woman show with actress Sunny Ormonde – the outrageous Lilian Bellamy from BBC Radio 4’s The Archers, the world’s longest running soap.

Over the course of the next ten days, we’ll be joined by as-seen-on-tv-off-his-trolley comic genius Phil Kay, master of freeform performance and storytelling, and notorious Australian, Trenton Oldfield – who served six months at her Majesty’s Pleasure for disrupting the 2012 Boat Race in a protest against elitism.

We will be hosting two wonderful authors who’ll fascinate you with insights and anecdotes from their latest books: Angela Buckley introduces us to The Real Sherlock Holmes – Detective Jerome Caminada, whose methodologies mimicked Conan Doyle’s genius, and Debz Hobbs-Wyatt, who will discuss the impact of reality on fiction. While No One Was Watching is set against the backdrop of the Kennedy assassination and the abduction of a young girl from the grassy knoll on that fateful day.

For families to enjoy together, we have Assassin, featuring the fantastic Joe Craig reading extracts from his Jimmy Coates series – part boy, part weapon, totally deadly – which will be interpreted with music by Alice composer, Jacob Bride, and exciting young street dance group CYC. Awesome Keeper of the Realms trilogy author, Marcus Alexander, who is Charlie’s Keeper, will entertain and inspire you with his delightfully wicked fantasy adventure series – get your read on!

Our interactive story game this year is Murder in the Crypt and will feature some of your favourite detectives. In addition, we’re holding a Cafe Crawl, where you can sample music, poetry, storytelling and more, in the company of, amongst others, former Canterbury Laureate Dan Simpson. Bookmark’d is a chance to buy books, swap books or just listen to books, read aloud by their authors.

Our Night at the Theatre will this year be held in conjunction with Chatham Grammar School for Boys and be presented by award winning 17% playwrights, Sam Fentiman-Hall, Sarah Hehir and Maggie Drury. The Spirit of My Dream is inspired by Byron’s poem The Dream and features new plays with a somewhat fantastical theme.

An exhibition curated by ME4Writers especially for the festival, An Assemblance of Judicious Heretics, has channelled Byron to produce work inspiring madness, badness and dangerousness in the hearts of artists. A live reading will bring the visual carnage to life!

Byron’s Teapot will be our finale – a mad mix of the unusual and quirky, featuring The James Worse Public Address Method, JP Lovecraft, Dylan Oscar Rowe and Brides of Rain.

Tickets are available here.

We look forward to welcoming you to our exciting – and only slightly scary – second full length festival!

To read full details, download a copy the 2014 programme and buy tickets, please visit rochesterlitfest.com.

If you have any enquiries regarding any of the events or festival in general, please email rochesterlitfest@gmail.com or telephone 07904 643770.

The Rochester Literature Festival (RLF) was formed in May 2011 as an information sharer, and held its inaugural event, The Garden Poetry Party in July 2012.

The first main festival, Other Worlds, Other Voices took place in October 2013.

The RLF is a voluntary group and currently receives no public funding, relying solely on the generosity of its performers, audiences, personal donations and in kind help.

The Programme Details

An Evening with Sunny Ormonde

Thursday, 25th September, 7pm – 10pm

Lords Wood Sports and Social Club

£10

Café Crawl

Saturday, 27th September, 1pm-5pm

La Toretta, Tiny Tims, Café 172 (Dot Café), Bruno’s Bakes. Rochester High Street

Free

The Queen versus Trenton Oldfield: A Prison Diary

Saturday, 27th September, 7pm – 10pm

Sun Pier House, Chatham

£6

Bookmark’d

Sunday, 28th September, 12noon – 4pm

Guildhall Museum, Rochester

Free

Marcus Alexander: Who is Charlie’s Keeper?

Sunday, 28th September, 2pm – 3.30pm

Woodlands Academy, Gillingham

£3

The Real Sherlock Holmes: Angela Buckley

Monday, 29th September, 6.30pm – 9pm

Café 172 (Dot Café), Rochester

£4.00

While No-one Was Watching: Debz Hobbs-Wyatt

Wednesday, 1st October, 6.30pm – 9pm

Café Nucleus, Chatham

£4

An Assemblance of Judicious Heretics Live

Thursday, 2nd October, 7.30pm

Rochester Library

Free

Exhibition: Friday 26/9 to Saturday 25/10 Free, normal opening hours.

Phil Kay: Wholly Viable

Friday, 3rd October, 8.00pm – 11.30pm (includes support)

The Billabong Club, Rochester

£7

Murder in the Crypt

Saturday, 4th October, 10am – 4pm

Bishopscourt, Rochester

Ticket price £3

A Night at the Theatre: The Spirit of my Dream

Saturday, 4th October, 7pm – 10pm

Chatham Grammar School for Boys

£5

Assassin

Sunday, 5th October, 2pm -5pm

Lords Wood Sports and Social Club

Tickets from £3. Family tickets available.

Byron’s Teapot

Sunday, 5th October, 7.30pm – 11pm

Lords Wood Sports and Social Club

£5

BESPOKE – Designer and Maker Fair – Apply to Exhibit – Medway

 

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Bespoke is a new international designer and maker fair being launched in Chatham, Kent. The 2014 event is the pilot of this new event in Medway offering designers, makers and artists a free opportunity to showcase their work to the public.

Artists from across England and France are being invited to apply, with the selection process hoping to create a diverse range of work on show. Coinciding with the Chatham day of the Fuse Festival the Fair will provide an added opportunity for visitors to the Festival to experience art and meet designers.  

The Fair is free for the public to enter.

VENUE

The outdoor fair will take place alongside the new creative venue Sun Pier House, in an area of the Sun Wharf car park; Medway Street, Chatham, Kent, ME4 4HF. Sun Pier House hosts a large public gallery, tearoom, artist studios and office space for creative industries.

APPLYING

Applications are invited across the UK and France from individual makers and craft based businesses. We require a CV and artist statement along with 3 representative images of work clearly labelled with title, medium and size. JPEGS are preferred. We accept applications by email and post. We will reply to all applicants to acknowledge your application. The selection process will be taken seriously and we will notify all applicants of our decision by Monday 2 June 2014.

DEADLINE

Applications are invited any time before 5pm on Monday 9th June 2014.

PITCH INFORMATION

As part of the 2014 pilot event all pitches are offered for FREE to successful applicants. We will provide;

  • One gazebo cover with sides, approximately 3m x 3m per exhibitor

  • Two tables and one chair for each exhibitor

Trading hours are 11am – 5pm; stallholders can gain access from 8am on the day to set up.

Stallholders must supply any other equipment required for their stall. Note: there are no power sockets or additional lighting.

Vehicles can unload/ load in the car park alongside their pitch and vehicles will be moved out of sight. One parking space will be provided per exhibitor.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

As part of the pilot scheme we are also offering all applicants the opportunity to attend a series of practical workshop aimed at small creative business. Topics covered throughout the course will be;

  • Work selection for fairs
  • How to present and display your work
  • How to price your work
  • Talking to the public and selling you work
  • Basic book-keeping and small business finance systems
  • Social media and marketing plans

The training will take place throughout the summer. Tailored to the feedback from exhibitors at Bespoke.

CONTACT INFORMATION

We prefer email communication where possible. If you have any questions please contact Heather Burgess, Event Coordinator, on heather@sunpierhouse.co.uk. If you are unable to use email or have an urgent enquiry please contact Heather on 07545 642 581. Office hours are Monday – Friday 10am – 5pm.

TERMS & CONDITIONS

  • All work must be original and by the exhibitor

  • Makers cannot sublet their space or any part of it to another party or maker without prior permission.

  • Makers cannot display work or services other than that which they stated in their application.

  • You are responsible for your own insurance for you work. We recommend joining a-n/ AIR.

  • All work displayed should ideally be for sale.

  • A few cards and postcards can be displayed and sold but must not dominate the space.

 

Bespoke 2014 is part of the Recreate project, selected under the European Cross-border Cooperation Programme INTERREG IV A France (Channel) – England, co-funded by the ERDF

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The Word Play Wagon lights the Fuse in Walderslade

Jaye Nolan, Festival Director of the Rochester Literature Festival, has been selected by the Kent Baton to open their Sparks Fuse Festival project, One Day Works.

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Jaye’s short term residence in the Baton – a vintage silver airstream caravan converted to a mobile art centre – is on Wednesday, June 4th from 11am – 6pm. It will be located outside Permark Post Office in Walderslade Village and its activities will be suitable for all ages and all abilities. No previous experience is needed, just turn up and play around with some words.

The overall title, The Word Play Wagon, reflects the diverse creative writing activities planned, including:

  • Turn over a new leaf: Add a poem, wish or favourite saying to a luggage label leaf you create and hang it on a Poetree.
  •  A Novel Experience: Bring your favourite book and write an original short piece based on its premise.
  • Hint: Writing micro fiction from as little as 10 words
  • Spoofing Medway: Write the local news as it didn’t happen
  • Mystery Collective Poems: Add a line to the one before – it’ll be the only one you can see!
  •  If and Then: A question and answer session with a difference.

With the Rochester LitFest aiming to make literature accessible to more people, Jaye is delighted to be running a free one day workshop dedicated to creative writing, saying: “I’m really looking forward to engaging lots of people in writing activities, and encouraging them to find their voices. Who knows, I might find the next generation of Medway poets!”

One Day Works will host a series of one day experiments throughout Medway during the Fuse Festival and its build up. From urban high streets to country villages, the project will showcase ten of Medway’s finest creative talents across a range of art forms. Along with the The Word Play Wagon, the works include an epic poem, sculptures made from found objects, archival collections, insect inspired costumes, drawings made from thread, an acoustic live music gig and a magic lantern performance. All activities are free.

www.jayenolan.com

TONE Festival: The UK’s First Festival Of Contemporary Sonic and Visual Arts – 20th to 22nd June 2014 – Medway

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Venue: The Historic Dockyard, Fort Amherst, Gun Wharf, Sun Pier and LV21 PLUS MORE! 

Dates: 20 – 22 June 2014. Pre-festival events from 9 June 2014
Price: £18 (£15 concs.) per day
Website: www.tonefestival.com

2014 marks the first edition of TÖNE, the UK’s first festival of contemporary sonic and visual arts, taking place in its launch year in the unique and challenging setting of The Historic Dockyard, Fort Amherst and sites along the Medway River at Chatham, Kent from 20 – 22 June 2014.

This wide-ranging and stimulating programme of events will showcase a selection of the best new music and visual art on the international arts scene, marking the First World War Centenary through work that reflects the military and maritime location of Chatham. The festival’s theme A Meeting of Sound and Light also reflects the timing of the festival over the weekend of the Summer Solstice, an annual celebration of light that dates back to the earliest days of human settlement on the island.

 
Highlights include:
· 9 ambitious new national and international commissions challenging perspectives on the environment, heritage, and the future of public space.
· Choreographer Anna Koch and composer Mats Lindström will undertake an art residency on LV21, the last lightship built in the UK, currently docked at Gillingham Pier
· Australian artist James Geurts will build a solar light sculpture, marking Midsummer on Sun Pier
· Dan Ayling directs a cello tour around UNESCO world heritage site The Historic Dockyard Chatham, with Rohan de Saram, Lucy Railton and Olly Coates and the Musarc choir
· New installations at dramatic Fort Amherst, overlooking the River Medway, with ‘Twittering Machines’ by leading British sound artist Kathy Hinde, and Gunsgooffbythemselves by Ben Fitton and Dylan Shipton.
· New radio art commission from Sara-Mohr Pietsch
· DJ set by Max Reinhardt
· Morgan O’Hara, Jon Tilbury and Sarah Nicolls re-imagine the grand piano

James Geurts. Tidal Topography 10 2012. Dalhousie Art Gallery, Halifax. Light installation resize

Founded and directed by composer/sound artist Claudia Molitor and visual artist Julie Louise Bacon, the festival’s programme brings together local and international sound and visual artists, including nine new commissions, across sculpture, sound, dance, radio art and food art, as well as installations, broadcasts and public forums. A festival pre-programme will involve participants in a series of workshops, masterclasses and talks, linked into local arts and education activities.
@tonefestival

Theatre Workshops – From July 2014 – Chatham

A set of three interlinked acting courses

Each course explores some specific and key ideas of Constantin Stanislavski.

Classes are very practical, with a strong emphasis on scene-work, experiment and structured acting exercises.

You can come to just one course if you like – they’re designed to work alone. Or two, if you want to make the links. Or, indeed, all three. The first I’m offering is The Actor and The Character.

The Actor and The Character A seven week acting course Saturdays – 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Starts Sat 19th July, 2014. Nucleus Arts, Chatham High St, Chatham, Kent ME4 4BP.

Get this course at the early-bird price of £98 (£7 an hour). Just email me by Thurs 19th June – £126 thereafter

e: pdtheatreworkshops@hotmail.com

The Actor and...

Medway Visions Film Festival is back!

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Medway Visions is back and it needs your films! Medway Visions promotes independent filmmaking from around the world but a big emphasis will be placed on local upcoming filmmakers who have produced a short film, feature film or music video that needs to be seen!

The film festival is a new venture by Rochester filmmaker Mr Young, himself a indie filmmaker who has seen his short films and his debut feature film screened at festivals around the world and broadcast on television.

Medway Visions – Year One was a huge success, bringing together local arts providers and using their strengths to bring a passionate audience the best indie shorts and features from around the world and, of course, from Medway.  Last year’s event can be found here:

http://www.themoontheeye.com/medwayvisionsyearone

In order to submit your film email medwayvisions@themoontheeye.com with:
Title, running time, a brief synopsis, cast and crew list, previous screenings.
We will then ask you to send a DVD in due course.

 

For further details please visit our website: http://www.themoontheeye.com/medwayvisions

or our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/medwayvisions

 

 

 

 

The Cabaret Club is Recruiting!

SONY DSC

The Cabaret Club strives to go beyond expectations, creating a decadent environment which seems out of place from the real world but allows our guests the chance of escapism and one evening of fun and frivolity.  We bring some of the finest performers around into a sleepy part of Kent, to an audience who are deserving of such talent.

We launched in August 2013 to a rapturous audience and with our shows in such high demand we’re trialling a move into a bigger space at our current venue and need enthusiastic helpers to make that happen.  We were also successful in our application to create the Medway branch of Dr Sketchy’s (the world famous burlesque life drawing classes) which has further helped secure our position as a dominant cabaret force in Kent!  And we’re preparing to launch The Cabaret Club and Dr Sketchy’s for private hires so the need for a bigger team will soon be even greater.

We’re recruiting for volunteers to join our production team to help in the following areas:

  • Assistant Producers
  • Event Assistants
  • Marketing, PR and Social Media 
  • Technical
  • Set Design and Prop Making

These role/s are initially unpaid but if you’d like to get some production experience and are hard-working, reliable and like having fun while you work then get in touch!  E-mail hello@thecabaretclub.co.uk with details about yourself, what area of production interests you and what would make you a great addition to The Cabaret Club team.  Whatever your skill or passion, even if you work in a ‘regular’ job and want to try something new and exciting, then we’d love to hear from you!

You’d need to be Kent based or have transport.  This is initially an unpaid role but we are prepared to help and support you in gaining valuable work experience in a theatre production environment. You must be aged 18 or over and be available on evenings and weekends especially on the weekend of a show.

This is an exciting time for us and if you want to be a part of the journey then get in touch!

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www.facebook.com/thecabaretclubuk

www.twitter.com/cabaretclubuk

www.thecabaretclub.co.uk

 Dr Sketchy's logo VSN 4

www.facebook.com/medwaydrsketchy

www.twitter.com/drsketchymedway

www.drsketchy.com/branch/medway

Spoke ‘n’ Word – FREE workshops for 14-21yrs

Spoke-n-Word-eFlyers-MEDWAY

17th May | Times and venues listed below 

Shout Out to all budding spoken word artists, poets, wordsmiths, song writers and emcees aged 14 -21yrs.

Free opportunity for two full days mentoring by some of the UK’s most talented slam poets (during half term – 28th & 29th May) and a chance to perform alongside professional poets on our pedal powered stage onboard LV21 as part of the Fuse Festival at the Wise Words Festival in Canterbury.

Taster Session 17th May 11:00 -13:00 FREE

Medway Youth Service, Strood Youth Centre, Montford Road, Strood, Rochester ME2 3ET

Meet the Poets 17th May 18:30 – 21:00 | Tickets £3

‘Where Giants Stood’, Woodies Youth Centre, Arethusa Road, Rochester ME1 2UN

For further details please contact theCaptain@lv21.co.uk or pop into Strood Youth Centre.

Download flyer.

www.spokenword.info
www.lv21.co.uk
www.fusefestival.org.uk
www.wisewordsfestival.co.uk

ReSilience – FREE youth theatre production and workshop

ReSilience

Little Fish are performing a new Arts council funded show at The Kings Theatre Chatham at 7pm – 8.30pm on Tuesday 13th May. This is suitable for age 14 and above.

It is free to attend, just contact suha@littlefishtheatre.co.uk or call 07967101396

‘Resilience’ explores mental health issues effecting young people and how they can be more supported.

Company background:
Little Fish Theatre Company was established in 2008. For the last five years we have provided high quality, specialized theatre, drama and related arts projects tackling key social and regeneration issues for young people throughout South London. Little Fish seek to challenge injustice and inspire young people to develop and grow. However, we do not consider it our role merely to deliver information. We believe there are more effective methods to communicate facts and figures about particular issues and it is implicit in the company ethos that theatre is a means of engaging young people regardless their social or economic disposition. One of our objectives is to effectively use imagery, narrative and empathy to challenge and motivate young people to reflect upon their own value systems and their place within society.

Real Medway and Swale – Augmented Reality Workshops

Real Medway and Swale are running two workshops to explain more about their augmented reality game project and to start planning the first games.  They are looking for artists, storytellers, game makers, sound designers and others who would be interested in helping to plan and create content for the games.  Book a space at either the Faversham or Rochester workshops listed below:

22nd April 7pm – Creek Creative, 1 Abbey Road, Faversham – book a place at:realswale.eventbrite.com

1st May – 7pm – coFWD, 161 High Street, Rochester – book a place at: realmedway.eventbrite.com

You can also keep an eye on developments at the website and on Facebook, or contact Roy via email: realmedwayandswale@gmail.com

Real Medway and Swale is funded by Ideas Test – Creative People and Places Swale and Medway

Real Medway and Swale workshop poster

Real Medway and Swale is funded by Ideas Test – Creative People and Places Swale and Medway

The Travelling Talesman pitching in Rochester

The Rochester Literature Festival will play host to the Travelling Talesman at the Good Intent, John Street, Rochester on Friday, May 9th.

Fairiescomp

The Travelling Talesman has toured the country from Penzance to York, for feasts, festivals and fun since the early nineties.

You might guess from his name that The Travelling Talesman is a storyteller who enjoys taking his stories to new places. With twenty years experience telling myths, legends and folktales, last year he was nominated for “Outstanding Male” in the British Awards For Storytelling Excellence.

Expect a fun evening of gripping yarns as The Talesman recounts stories of Norse Gods, Celtic mysteries, clever girls and Dragon Slayers, medieval mayhem, giants, goblins and Halloween horrors. Originally specialising in Northern European tales, his stories are now drawn from all over the world.

Entry is free and doors open at 7pm. However, donations to cover costs would be welcomed and can be made via the Eventbrite page here.

To find out more about the Travelling Talesman, please visit his website here.

For information on other Rochester Literature Festival events, including their 2014 festival ‘Mad Bad & Dangerous to Know’ please visit www.rochesterlitfest.com or call 07904 643770.

The Days When Gillingham Fraggle Rocked

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I have always been a huge Jim Henson fan, my dream was to work at their Creature Studios in Camden, I was even offered work experience there whilst at college, which sadly fell through as they began working on a “top secret project” – I now believe this was actually closing the Camden studios.

It is no secret that I love Medway, and now I am in love a little bit more thanks to my friend Laura Murthy breaking the news on Facebook that the UK inserts were filmed in none other than Medway’s very own Gillingham.

For those who didn’t already know (like me) where the joy that is Aldi now sits (although I do like their waffles) once sat the Plaza cinema, which was built in 1931. At the time it was one of the most modern cinemas in Kent with seating for 1,800 people. This then closed in November 1980 and was bought by TVS South and turned into studios.

Attribution prefabkid - Kent History Forums
Attribution prefabkid – Kent History Forums

“The original intention had been to sell it off as soon as Maidstone was open but TVS hung onto it for a while, making programmes such as regional afternoon magazine Not for Women Only and from 1986 The Television Show, which was broadcast live from here on Sunday evenings across the ITV network.

Oddly, the show that kept the studio open was Muppets spin-off Fraggle Rock, which ran from 1983-1987.  Once this ended the studio was hardly used so it was put up for sale early in 1988 and was purchased by Network One TV in June 1989.  (This company also took over the Greenwood in 1990.)  Masterchef was made here then, plus a handful of other shows.  It closed as a studio in July 1991 and following a brief spell as a Quasar laser gaming centre, it lay empty for several years and was demolished in 2001.”(Taken from TV Studio History)

Attribution - Kyn - Kent History Forum
Attribution – Kyn – Kent History Forum/KM

Victor Pemberton who was co-producer at the time says “We took over an old cinema in Gillingham in Kent, and it was wonderful. The auditorium was cleared of seats, the stage was raised and extended.” (www.adventuresinprimetime.wordpress.com/2008/06/01/return-to-fraggle-rock)

The UK scenes involved the internal shots of the lighthouse, where Sprocket the dog lived with the lighthouse keeper, and of course, the tell tale “tiny cave in the wall”. (if anyone knows of other shots filmed there involving more Fraggles please say)

The main episode I remember, which was the episode I watched over and over again,  was when the water of Fraggle Rock was poisoned and Boober pleads for the humans to make it stop. The scenes that were filmed in Gillingham (inside the lighthouse) can be seen in this clip. I now watch this in awe even more, when realising it was filmed on ground I have walked over many times without even realising. It may sound silly, but it makes me a bit emotional! Here is the clip for you to enjoy…

By Natasha Steer

International Anti-Art School – Dr Sketchy’s – Comes To Medway

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The Medway branch of Dr Sketchy’s will be opening it’s doors after the collaboration between 3 sassy ladies who decided that the area would definitely be a brighter and more magical place with the addition of the Dr Sketchy’s.

Run by Lisa Carpendale, Michelle Woodland and Tracy Affleck the events will run both on Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons across the Medway area starting with events in Rainham and Rochester (just for starters).  Each event will be a unique mix of anything goes drawing (where mistakes are welcome), sumptuous cabaret acts, tuneage, unique themes and models that make you go ‘ooh’.  And of course there will be booze including special Sketchy Medway only cocktails mixes.  On a Sunday afternoon you can attend Sketchy’s in Rochester, where as well as the opportunity to partake in a weekend tipple there will be wonderful gooey homemade cakes and tea (how civilised) and a chance to meet with some mates and make some new ones.

Dr Sketchy’s Medway is about having a bit of fun and having a go at drawing in an inspiring atmosphere.  You do not have to be an ‘artist’ in the traditional sense and don’t have to be able to draw ‘perfectly’.  Just bring yourself and your va va voom.  There’s will be shorter sketching warm ups (to flex your drawing muscles) and an opportunity to draw longer poses.  Boards, paper and pencils are provided but you can bring your own sketchpads or different media that you would like to work with.

Keep up to date with the latest planned events at www.drsketchy.com/branch/medway

Real Medway and Swale

Author: Glogger 13 July 2009 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:MediatedReality_on_iPhone2009_07_13_21_33_39.jpg

Author: Glogger 13 July 2009 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:MediatedReality_on_iPhone2009_07_13_21_33_39.jpg

‘Real Medway & Swale’ is a new project funded by Creative People and Places (Medway and Swale) that aims to create an augmented reality adventure game, encouraging players to explore the area using mobile phone and tablet devices to find clues; interact with characters and solve puzzles, whilst moving around the real world. Imagine Monkey Island on your doorstep.

The game will be developed in collaboration with local artists, writers and volunteers who wish to experiment with augmented reality and digitally exhibit their work in unusual spaces.

Over the next few months there will be a series of workshops to explain the project in more detail, plan and find out who would be interested in getting involved.

Contact:
realmedwayandswale@gmail.com
if you are interested in finding out more or would like to be invited to a workshop.

Creatabot Funded To Run Project To Help Mobility impaired

CreataboX at Home

Application now open – see here.

Creatabot has been awarded funding from Creative People and Places (Medway and Swale) to run a brand new project aimed at helping people with mobility problems to still be involved in their local arts community.

CreataboX At Home will provide 50 people in Medway and Swale with materials needed to create small pieces of their own choice for the CreataboX Art Dispenser, which is present at many events in the local community. They will be given photos and videos from events so that they can see their contribution is appreciated in the community. 

Additionally if they are on occasion well enough to attend events, then transport will be provided, and they will also be given the opportunity to be given transport to local creative classes if they are able. People will also be given, if they wish, a Crafting Companion – someone who will visit them and provide company and encouragement whilst creating their chosen pieces.

MakingApart from various basic council/government/food services there is little in the UK to help people who are housebound feel involved in their local community, especially when it comes to local arts. Even from their own home they can contribute and be valuable to their local area, and the CreataboX At Home project will help make this happen. 

The project will also support those whose contact with their local community is limited due to mental and physical health conditions.

We will soon be releasing more details as to how people apply to be involved, in the meantime we would like to hear from people who would like to help support the project, especially those who are able to transport the CreataboX vending machine to events (petrol costs provided).

If you would like to help please email Natasha Steer on natasha@creatabot.co.uk 

CreataboX Creature

Transmit:Project – Are you the next big thing?

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Are you a musician/filmmaker/artist/photographer/organisation etc who would like more people to know about your work and what you do?

Perhaps you always wanted to know what musicians/filmmakers/artists/photographers etc live and work and create in Medway?

Would you like to transmit your art?  Would you like to project your talent?

Transmit:Project is a brand new project all about getting known.  Its all about providing a platform for upcoming and established artist and performers.  It’s all about having one place where people can go to find out more about the huge amount of talent that currently thrives in Medway.

This is going to be the place for local talent to be seen and heard.  This is going to be the place where audience inside and outside Medway will come to see what talent is around.  A while ago I wrote about some of the Medway scene with the popular Medway Visions articles.  I hope these will morph into transmit:project files as well as adding new ones all the time.

But it needs you.  Without talents to write about/broadcast then this project won’t get very far.  Make yourself heard.  Contact us.

Here’s how it works:

You send me a bio and some details about your work.

You send me a link to your work/send a cd etc.

With these things I can write about you.

You also send me a video file of you performing or a music video (musicians), interview/sequence of pictures of art (artists), sequence of photos (photographers) a short film (filmmaker).

With this I can post a clip of you/your work.  (If you can’t get a video file to me then contact me anyway and we can sort something out)

This will then be shown from the transmit:project broadcast channel:

http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8NHTvq6pzCSPZVfrOzDmzg

In time this project might spread out, but, for now, it’s all about Medway.  And what better place to start.  Transmitting art.  Projecting talent.

The Moon The Eye

transmitproject@themoontheeye.com

www.themoontheeye.com/transmitproject

www.facebook.com/Transmit.Project

Felt Making Classes at Sun Pier House – February to March 2014 – Chatham

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Workshops led by Jenni Burrows; a practising textile artist and qualified Art teacher. The aim of the workshops is to introduce you to the art of felt making, and to equip you with the basic skills that will allow you to branch out and be adventurous evolving your own style. There are a range of courses for adults and children, with all materials are provided. (You will need to bring your own lunch for the all day courses, but tea, coffee and juice will be available).

Perfect for beginners! All materials provided!

8th February and 1st March: 10-4pm: Taster Day for Adultsexperiment with a range of felt making techniques. Cost £35 per person (max: 10 places)

18th February: 10-12pm: Family Workshops for children Ages 3-6 years. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Max of two children per adult. (10 places maximum)

Cost: £10 per child

18th February: 1-3pm:Family Workshops for children Ages-7-10 years. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Max of two children per adult.

(10 places maximum). Cost: £10 per child

20th February: 10-4pm:Young People’s Workshop Ages 11-16 years.

(10 places maximum)

Cost: £25 per person

Adult Evening Workshops

A six week course beginning on Tuesday 25th February: 7-9pm experimenting with a range of techniques and materials to create a wearable piece of art.

Cost: £90 for six week course every Tuesday evening.

Location

The workshops will be held at Sun Pier House.

Full address is: Sun Wharf, Medway Street, Chatham, ME4 4HF

(We’re next to Staples and BBC Radio Kent) 

Free parking is available on site for the Tuesday evening class attendants. Alternatively, there is a pay and display car park within 1 minute walk; we are 8 minutes’ walking distance from Rochester train station; 5 minute’s walking distance from Chatham train station and 2 minute’s walking distance from Chatham bus station.

The workshops will take place in a studio environment on the first floor of Sun Pier House.

Please be aware, the building is over 25 years old and while Sun Pier House CIC are in the early stages of transforming the 1980’s offices into a creative centre, there is currently no lift access. The workshops will take place on the first floor, accessed via a set of external stairs. If you have any questions or concerns about the access please contact the venue in advance of booking.

To book a place on one of the courses please email: jenniburrows@yahoo.co.uk or phone 07505899623.

www.jenniburrowscontemporarytextiles.co.uk

Famous Children’s Author Brings The Gruffalo To Chatham Dockyard – 15th Feb to 1st June 2014

Gruffaloandchildrenforweb

The Historic Dockyard Chatham opens for the 2014 season on Saturday 15th February with the perfect exhibition for families – “A Squash and a Squeeze: Sharing Stories with Julia Donaldson”, running until 1st June.

Julia Donaldson, author of children’s modern classics such as The Gruffalo, Room on the Broom, Princess Mirror-Belle and The Troll, has worked with Seven Stories National Centre for Children’s Books to bring these best-selling children’s captivating stories to life, allowing visitors to enter the imagination of this much loved author and discover how she inspires her readers with story, rhyme and rhythm.

Julia’s journey can be followed from song writer for children’s television to Children’s Laureate 2011-2013. Families can share stories, cuddle the Gruffalo, crawl into the Squash and a Squeeze House, climb into Cave Baby’s cave and enjoy dressing up, looking in the funny mirrors. They can follow in Toddle Waddle’s footsteps, and even sing-a-long to her songs on Julia’s Jukebox or perform a play on the special stage! Visitors can view the amazing original artwork by her many illustrators – most famously Axel Scheffler, but also Lydia Monks, David Roberts, Nick Sharratt, Karen George and Emily Gravett – a must for any art enthusiast.

Pam Wood, Visitor Services Manager at The Historic Dockyard Chatham said; “This is going to be the perfect experience for both the young and the young at heart. We are so privileged to have Julia Donaldson’s work here at Chatham and we cannot wait to see the little ones having a “squash and a squeeze” with the Gruffalo in the gallery, not to mention listening to them during our various musical story telling sessions during the school holidays!”

About the exhibition, Julia Donaldson said; “I am thrilled that my work, and that of my illustrators, is to be presented in such a stimulating and child-friendly way, with so many mini-words and activities. Because of my love of drama and song, I am particularly excited about the theatre and the juke box!”

Kate Edwards, Chief Executive at Seven Stories said; “We are delighted to be working with Julia to bring many of her much loved stories and characters to life within this exhibition in ground breaking and interactive ways. We will also explore the importance of rhythm and rhyme in language acquisition. This not to be missed exhibition will delight her huge following of fans and will also attract new audiences to her ever popular books and songs.” Seven Stories explores the impact sharing stories has on child development through learning projects in partnership with Action for Children and children with hearing impairments.

The Historic Dockyard will be running a number of engaging and exciting school holiday family activities, all inspired by A Squash and a Squeeze exhibition:

Books, Glorious Books: 15 February – 23 February
Brilliant books are brought to life with musical storytelling and craft activities. Make your own peg Freddy or Fairy!

Monkey Business: 5 April – 19 April
Musical activities, Monkey Puzzle storytelling and the chance to produce your own paper primate!

Marvellous Monsters: 24 May – 1 June
Monster story telling with a musical difference! Make your own monster mask and take part in a ‘Monster Safari’.

A Squash and A Squeeze: Sharing Stories with Julia Donaldson runs from 15th February until 1st June in No. Smithery: The Gallery and is included in the normal dockyard admission price. All tickets are valid for a year, giving families the opportunity to visit again and again.

Seasonally Effected – Creative Open-Mic Events – Medway

Seasonally Effected is a Rochester based open-mic night for creative and cultural exploration.  It features a diverse mix of performances including poetry, short film, comedy, short stories, original music, plays and a variety of experimental content that is less easy to define.  Usually happening at the lovely and cosy Dot Cafe on Rochester High Street, it is advisable to arrive early to guarantee a seat.  The first events for this year are planned for the 29th January and 19th February and will run 7-9pm.

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This year they are looking for performers who are up for more of a challenge. Organisers are suggesting people try something completely different from their usual practice, for example poets do a painting, singer-song writers perform some stand up, film makers experiment with flower arranging and storytellers sing a song.

The event is free to attend and there is no pressure to perform.  However, if you are interested in booking a 10 minute spot to share something you have created, whether that be film, poem, song, art, idea or other form of expression, contact them on: seasonallyeffected@gmail.com

Chatham Intra Art Competition – Closes 28th February 2014

Intralogolarge

Theme: Chatham Intra* and Lesser Known Chatham*the area between the east end of St. Margaret’s Bank, roughly where the railway bridge crosses Rochester High Street, and the Chapel of St. Bartholomew.

 

Entries will be accepted in any 2D medium, including photography Click here for an extract
from WOW Magazine
October 2013

PRIZES:

1ST – £1000

2ND – £500

3RD – £250

All entries will be considered for purchase by Richard Watts Charities.
In addition to the cash prizes RWC will be holding an exhibition of short-listed work at Nucleus Gallery in Chatham for 2 weeks from 4 – 17 April 2014.
Email fleur.boyce@richardwatts.org.uk or telephone 01634 842194 for more information.
You may apply via www.richardwatts.org.uk from 1 January 2014.
Closing date is 1.00 p.m. Friday 28 February 2014.
There is a £10 fee per entry with a maximum of three entries per person.Competition Rules

  1. Artists must be 16 years or over.
  2. The theme of the competition is ‘Chatham Intra and Lesser Known Chatham’.
  3. Entries will be accepted in any 2D medium, including photography and must be no larger than A1 (594mm x 841mm) once framed.
  4. Submissions will only be accepted as digital files uploaded via our website from 1 January 2014.
  5. Digital submissions should be of a resolution between approximately 1024 x 768 and 1920 x 1080.
  6. Artwork submitted must be original and created by the artist(s) named in the application.
  7. Price must be included in the application form, maximum £1000.
  8. Deadline for entries 1pm on 28th Feb 2014.
  9. There is a £10 fee per entry. Unpaid or unidentified entries will not be accepted.
  10. Payment can be made via the application form online, by cheque or cash at: Richard Watts Charities, Administrative Offices, Watts Almshouses, Maidstone Road, Rochester, Kent ME1 1SE. Monday to Friday 9.30am-4pm. By BACS to: RICHARD WATTS CHARITIES, Barclay’s Bank PLC, Medway Towns Branch, Sort Code: 20-54-11, Account: 60931373. Please use your full name as reference.
  11. Maximum of three entries per person.
  12. The application form, submission upload facility and an optional online payment facility will be available on this website from 1 January 2014.
  13. Successful entrants will be notified by email / telephone by 14th March 2014. If you are not contacted by 14th March please assume your submission has not reached the short-list, however your work may still be purchased by Richard Watts Charities.
  14. Short-listed work must be delivered to Nucleus Art Gallery on the afternoon of Thursday 3rd April 2014 by 5pm or on Friday 4th April 2014 by 10.30am. Unsold work must be picked up Thursday 17th April between 1-5pm. Please contact Nucleus 01634 812108 direct if you are unable to deliver or pick up during these times.
  15. Work to be supplied framed, strung and bubbled-wrapped to prevent damage.
  16. Each entry to be clearly labelled on the back with name of artist, title of work, medium and price.
  17. Exhibition dates – Friday 4th April – Thursday 17th April 2014.
  18. Nucleus Arts will take 25% commission on all sales from their gallery.
  19. All sold artwork must remain in the gallery until the closure of the exhibition.
  20. Works submitted for the exhibition remain at all times, the liability of the artist who should arrange insurance to cover from transit, exhibiting and on to collection if unsold.
  21. Entry is taken as consent to re-produce entrant’s artwork. Artwork will only be used for purposes connected to the Richard Watts Charities Art Competition.
  22. Artwork will be exhibited for sale as part of this competition, and entry is taken as consent to exhibit and sell.
  23. Entry to the competition will be deemed as acceptance of our terms and conditions.

She Writes – Crowdfunding Campaign – Plays by women – Please support!

Image of She Writes actors
Image of She Writes actors
She Writes – at the Rochester Literature Festival

She Writes is a showcase of new writing by women playwrights, produced by 17Percent, an organisation set up in 2009 by Medway-based Sam Hall to promote and support women writers (who write approximately only 17% of the plays produced in the UK). The night ran for just over a year at the Horsebridge in Whitstable, but recently had a well-received re-launch at the Rochester Literature Festival in October, and at the Canal Cafe in London. She Writes: What’s through the door? was a sci-fi slanted series of 3 short plays inspired by a story by HG Wells.

“Three plays in one, each delightful and mysterious. The pieces are beautifully and intelligently connected by an overarching narrative.” **** Everything Theatre

“I loved everything about She Writes: the concept; writing; performances and the whole collaborative process – brilliant!”

Now 17Percent are fundraising to develop She Writes further. We want to establish a regular night locally, so Medway residents have the opportunity to see top class new writing, and also to showcase our talented Medway writers in London. If you can help by donating anything – please go to our fundraising page: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/she-writes-showcasing-plays-by-women

For more info on 17Percent and She Writes – visit http://17percent.wordpress.com, or follow us on Twitter: @17percent, or on Facebook: 17Percent.

Learn More about Medway’s Secret Island During Medway Visions Film Festival – 12th September

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A film documenting the experiences of an artist living on Darnet Island for 6 weeks last summer is being screened at Gillingham library on the 12th of September as part of the Medway Visions film festival.

Otherness; Forty Five Days on the Isle of Beauty, shows the life David Wise lived during 6 weeks camping on Darnet Island in the Medway Estuary. David lived partly off the food he found there and recorded life with a variety of means including a pinhole camera made from driftwood.

The film is a great way to see parts of Medway that most of us have never seen, and learn more about the nature around us that often goes un-noticed.

The free screening will take place on the 12th of September at 7.30pm and will be followed by a questions and answers session with David Wise. At the screening David will also be launching his complimenting book which will be on sale at £15 which includes a £5 discount.

People can book by calling the library on 01634 337799 or email chatham.library@medway.gov.uk with the reference “45 Days Of Beauty”.

A poem dedicated to the memory of Hilary Halpern

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I moved to Medway some time ago

This place inspires me, as you well know

I wanted to help with the amazing creativity

To help it be seen by more, to prevent exclusivity.

 

But fortunately I had somewhere to start

Someone had already helped Medway’s art

This man was someone who needed a studio himself

But was happy to share space with someone else.

 

So he looked for a place that would be just right

And in Chatham High Street he found just the site

There was room for lots of artists, not just him

And this is where Nucleus arts was to begin.

 

He saw in Medway there was a need

So in making studios for artists he took the lead

Him and his daughter made lots of studios and gallery space

At last creatives in Medway could find their place.

 

All that happened in 2002

And the arts centre just grew and grew

And now as the arts scene here continues to boom

Nucleus arts continues to bloom.

 

Over 400 artists have been there to create

The effect on Medway has been great

I know I will never forget what Hilary done

So Medway creatives, let us make sure the work he started, carries on.

By Natasha Steer

 

Dedicated to the memory of Hilary Halpern – founder of Nucleus Arts Centre.

It was Hilary’s wishes that donations should be made to Nucleus Arts  – click here for more details.

Make a Website In A Night – 8th July 2013 – Rochester

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Order tickets via Eventbrite:
http://websiteinanight-efbevent.eventbrite.co.uk/

In one evening Natasha Steer will help you create a simple website and show you the basics of how to maintain it.

There are just a few things you will need –

A laptop

Images for the website

Your bio details for the “About” page

Your email address details

Details of the domain name you own – OR if you do not yet own a domain name (ie www.yournamehere.co.uk) then please purchase beforehand or bring a debit card/Paypal details on the night so that we can go through this process step by step. 1&1 internet are really good – you shouldn’t have to pay more that £10.

Any questions just email natasha@creatabot.co.uk

Location – 161 High Street, Rochester (coFWD)

Time – 7pm to 10pm

Please note: Our venue is a very old bank building that is being slowly shaped by a community of individuals for long-term Community Interest. Sadly the startup project is in its infancy and being run on limited funds so the building currently has some accessibility issues. If you have specific access or disability requirements and would like to participate in an event or activity please let us know at least 5 days before the event date so that we can do our utmost to resolve any potential problems to accommodate.

Chatham Mural Project Workshop Dates Announced – All Welcome

Would you like to be part of an exciting community art project to paint a big mural showing scenes from Chatham’s past present and future? The site is next to Homestyle 206/206A Chatham High Street. Artist Richard Jeferies will develop designs based on your ideas and work with you to paint the mural. Whether you are 9 or 99 years old you are welcome to join in!

Workshops to develop the designs will take place on these dates at:

Nucleus Arts Centre – Conference Room

High Street

Chatham

Sunday 9th June 2pm to 4pm

Monday 10th June 6pm to 8pm

Wednesday 12th June 6pm to 8pm

Painting the mural: Monday 1st to Friday 12th July

Launch – 13th July alongside Medway Open Studios launch

The mural project has been developed by DNA and the workshops and mural are being developed by artist Richard Jeferies.

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Lighting The Match For Fuse Festival Begins…

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Fuse Medway Festival has announced the programme highlights destined to fill the streets and public spaces of Chatham, Rochester and Gillingham between 14 and 16 June. Just half an hour from London visitors to the festival can expect to experience the very best in international and UK outdoor arts – all for free. This year Fuse presents a huge array of theatre, music, dance and circus performances – from crazy and beautiful walkabout shows by day to aerial or circus spectaculars by night.

This year’s hand-picked line-up of inspiring and exciting events includes a curious fusion of steampunk and circus spectacular in a brand new piece from Lost in Translation Circus, Small Wonders’ 2nd commission for the Under-5s combining paint and dance Little Artist:Big Painting from Commotion Dance, lively Indo-Caribbean music, dance, song and storytelling in Kuljit Bhamra’s first piece for the outdoors, Chutney in the Street! and a breath-taking aerial performance of Mobile Homme – a human mobile suspended 100 feet above the crowd– from the internationally-acclaimed French company Transe Express , to name just a few.

3 exciting performances have been specially created for Fuse by local artists and will take place over the weekend. Dizzy O’Dare Presents…. will be bringing ‘The Wonderful World of Mr E,’ a lively show featuring puppets, clowning and story-telling and Mr E’s incredible ‘Museum’. Rebecca Ashton’s ‘The Sirens of Cetham’ will be a visually exciting dance performance and innovative writers’ group ME4Writers will be creating ‘The Wordshed’ – where the writers will create and launch a new collection of poetry and stories for Fuse Festival. And in a collaboration with London’s Central School of Speech and Drama, a performance created just for Fuse will be staged during the Festival – Obstinate Oswald and the Monster of Mud – which the students describe as ‘a fantastic fable of terrible fates for naughty children and difficult parents alike’.

Also don’t forget to check out Medway’s new art vending machine, CreataboX – developed by Creatabot! It will be on Chatham High Street, outside Central Theatre on June 15th 12pm – 4.45pm.  

Fuse’s new Artistic Director, Megan Donnolley, says of this year’s highlights; ‘I’m thrilled to be working on such an exciting festival that is free, outdoor and accessible to all. The Saturday night spectacular at Rochester Castle from Transe Express is guaranteed to astound… one not to be missed! Created with and for, the people of Medway, this is your festival and we look forward to seeing you there.’

FUSE 2013 will take place from 14th to 16th June. It is supported by the Arts Council’s Grants for the Arts Scheme and Medway Council. For more information about Fuse Medway Festival visit the website at www.fusefestival.org.uk, or join them on Facebook or Twitter. For more information about Medway visit http://www.visitmedway.org or for Kent visit www.visitkent.co.uk

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Free Talk – The Creative Process: Words and Music – June 17th 2013 at 2.30pm – University Centre Folkestone

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Some rights reserved by MarkyBon

When composers and writers collaborate, what comes first – the words or music?  UCF hosts a conversation between Mariam Al-Roubi, singer, songwriter and librettist for the opera Mirabai, and its composer, Barry Seaman.

How does a creative work, such as an opera, develop from idea to tangible form through musical and written language? What is it like to adapt original text to produce a libretto? How do you ensure that you honour the original text (the opera subject, Mirabai, was herself a mystic poet, musician and dancer from 16th century Rajasthan).  How do you integrate newly written poetry? How does a composer work with a writer?  How is it different to working on an album? These questions will be explored and the dynamics of creative minds working together discussed, using musical examples.

About the speakers

Barry studied at York University, specialising in composition, and works have been produced and commissioned in most media, with broadcasts on Radio 3 and his music for silent films Tsar Ivan Vasilyevitch Grozny (Alexander Ivanov-Gai 1915) and The Life of Richard Wagner (Carl Froelich 1913) was widely toured in the USA. He has a special interest in music as a healing process. His most recent project is Mirabai, a large scale multimedia opera that combines ancient spiritual and romantic ideas with astonishing technology in collaboration with Musion Systems.

Mariam is a classically trained singer, dancer, musician and poet.  Whilst writing the libretto for Mirabai, she is also working on a number of projects, including her studio album. She studied BA (Hons) Music Technology at Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance.

About Mirabai

Mirabai is the third of a trilogy. The first two pieces were large-scale choral works: The Consoling Song (words in Sanskrit from the Bhagavad Gita; commissioned by The Brighton Singers and first performed in Brighton UK 2002) and Bhajans (words by Nimisha Patel and Elizabeth Newman; commissioned by The Madrigal Choir of Binghamton and first performed in Binghamton NY USA 2007).

In March 2013, The Lake, and Petals, two excerpts from Mirabai, were premiered by the Ealing Symphony Orchestra and the Krishna Dance was shown as part of the annual Kinetica Art Fair in London, presented by the Musion Academy. A short film of the Krishna dance scene has been produced, and directed by acclaimed film director, Tony Palmer.

 

This event is FREE to attend but advance booking is essential.

Please contact jane.seaman@canterbury.ac.uk or ring 01303 760600.

Area: South East    Folkestone

Half Term Creative Family Workshops – Sparky Project – 30th and 31st May 2013 – Rochester

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The Sparky Project is hosting hands on making workshops in order to create a series of parade structures as part of this year’s Opening Parade for Fuse Festival 2013.

Families are invited to help with getting the projects two main characters ready for the parade, the theme of which is ‘Time Travel’. The workshops, taking place in Rochester, are open to children accompanied by parents.

The Sparky Project aims to offer a wide selection of creative activities to a wider audience, and these workshops will offer an insight into some of the making processes involved with the parade.

The workshops will be held between 11am – 1pm on both Thursday 30th May and Friday 31st May.

Booking is essential, so please go to www.sparkyproject.eventbrite.co.uk to book a place.

The workshops will take place at the Scullery Studios, behind 376 High Street, Rochester, ME1 1DA.

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Area: Kent    Medway     South East

Be Part Of Medway’s New Art Vending Machine – CreataboX

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An art vending machine, CreataboX, is being launched at Fuse festival on the 15th of June in Chatham, and the project needs help from local creatives to produce miniature creations to go inside the machine.

Items can include art pieces, knitting, poetry, stories, music on memory cards and anything inspiring that can fit into a vending machine ball. Creatives are being asked to include information about themselves in the ball as this is a great opportunity for promotion.

The next free workshop is at 6.30 on Tuesday 11th June at 161 High Street, Rochester. Materials will be provided. Book here – http://creatabox.eventbrite.co.uk

The vending balls are 9cm in diameter and you can also bring pre-made work to the workshops, where they will be put into the vending balls.

The workshops are being lead by local artist Richard Jeferies, who is part of the CreataboX project. Richard has taught a wide range of artistic workshops and been part of many local art projects over the last 10 years. Speaking about the project he says “I would like to see the CreataboX building a link between artists and lovers of art. With its pocket money price (£1) I would hope it can bring art into more peoples lives, and at the same time give exposure and inspiration to creatives established as well as just starting out”.

It is hoped in the future that funding will be available to commission local creatives for further vending machine contents.

CreataboX has been developed through Creatabot by a team of people passionate about doing awesome things in Medway. It was inspired by the art vending machine in Leeds, but was altered to be multimedia.

Area :    Kent    South East    Medway