Join The GAP’s Volunteer Team!

Become a part of our friendly volunteer team working together to support our mission of engaging young people and the local community through creative and cultural action!

The running of our venue and its important day-to-day operations is reliant upon a small team of committed volunteers. We’re now looking to expand the team as we re-open our space to the world once again and welcome back our community. We want people who share our vision, have initiative and ideas to share, and who want to get involved in a longer-term journey with us. In the spirit of mutual exchange, we’ll work together to design a range of volunteer benefits in return for your time, energy and commitment, which will include opportunities to get involved in a whole host of other ways.

We’ve outlined below the details of the current roles and how your involvement would support our vision.

To express your interest, fill in your details on our Volunteer Form by the 28th April. Link to form – https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1xot3p0Uy6EZKvQgImJMicennt1x-iuVCgmgB_nY45r8/viewform?edit_requested=true

We’ll then invite you to come along to an informal group session at The GAP where you can meet the team, see the space, share the vision and find out more details!

COMMUNITY HOSTS

This role is all about making sure our venue is welcoming, accessible and engaging for all our community.

You’ll be the first person our visitors come into contact with, making people feel comfortable, ensuring they’re informed about our work and what’s going on, and encouraging different types of engagement and participation. Responsibilities will include (but are not limited to) welcoming and chatting with visitors, engaging them in the exhibitions, answering enquiries, signposting to our upcoming events or projects, collecting feedback, addressing accessibility needs, taking donations, signing people up to our mailing list, etc.

We want individuals who love to connect with and care about people of all ages and backgrounds, are confident and friendly, great communicators, have an understanding of accessibility needs, with a genuine enthusiasm for our work and a desire to get others involved. Ideally you’ll live in or around Balsall Heath.

CAFE CREW

By assisting us with the smooth running of our community cafe, you’ll be helping us to raise the vital funds needed to sustain our work.

Our cafe is a really important way of introducing audiences into our creative and cultural work, whilst also acting as a cosy hub for conversation and community exchange. As well as serving delicious food and drinks, our Café Crew play a very important role in creating a welcoming environment and ensuring our customers have positive experiences that make them want to come back. Responsibilities include greeting and seating, waiting on tables, serving drinks and snacks, and keeping things clean and tidy.

We want individuals who enjoy and are confident in customer service, who can commit to following COVID-secure hygiene procedures, and who are friendly and hospitable towards all different types of people. Ideally you’ll live in or around Balsall Heath.

Birmingham Open Studios

Birmingham Open Studios returns this September, bigger than ever before, and now covering even more of the city.

Dozens of artists and creators exhibiting from their own homes and studios on the weekends of 18/19th and 25/26th September. Artists who cannot exhibit from their own homes can buddy-up or use a community space. The event is run like an art trail, and is free to visit and family friendly. The public can pick up printed guide books with maps from across the city, or follow the interactive map and guide on our website www.birminghamopenstudios.com

The event allows artists of all calibre to display and sell as much work as they like, all commission free! The interactive element between the artists and art lovers brings a personal element, and promotes community spirit. The event welcomes experienced and brand new artists of all calibres and styles. However, all art must be tangible and non-performance. 

Artists can exhibit between one, or all 4 days of the event. The event runs 11am-5pm each day. The membership fee is £42 for the event regardless of how many days they participate.

If you wish to know more, please visit our website and read our About Us and FAQ sections, and sign up online. The deadline for submissions is July 15th

Any questions, please use the contact us form online

Artist Slots & Open Slots, Theatre Mix @ Home

Theatre Mix @ Home is a live-streamed performance night for West Midlands artists – scripted, devised, music, spoken word, cabaret and more. We’re open minded! We have Artist Slots and Open Slots available for our next event.

Where? Your place
When? Thursday 15th April 2021 (evening)

More information and how to apply can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Mzx2PhiNdjbnSzaYJwxoqrsTxS2j9IvoWFaSIUCTiLs/edit?usp=sharing

Open Slots:
Breaking down barriers for artists to try out new work and have performance opportunities.
First come, first served for each art form
Up to 5 minutes
Drink provided

Submission form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSerp07wBjSN3zLGVJojlJBV_M6ADN5y0J8h9FX2rLmNXdrXNQ/viewform
Deadline: 5pm on Thursday 8th April (may close sooner if all slots are filled before this date). We will respond as and when each submission comes in.

Artist Slots:
For more developed work.
Programmed by organisers Holly and Lisa
15-20 minutes
Fee: £100 for a solo act, £200 for a duo
Duos can be in a bubble, or we can facilitate two performers remotely on the screen

Application form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfsUPxiYogo9n_Zb3KucK8EHbUGEgdGaeY7_DgP1ooXWmErEQ/viewform
Deadline: 5pm on Thursday 1st April. We will respond by 12pm on Monday 5th April.

Although this event is taking place online, we are committed to platforming local artists and, as such, are looking specifically for artists based in the West Midlands.

If you have further questions, would like help applying or want the submission form in another format, please email theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com

Note: You will need a stable internet connection and a device to record from (smartphone, laptop etc).
GUSH Theatre welcome applications from everyone regardless of age, sex, gender identity, ethnicity, socio-economic background, sexual orientation, religion or disability. We are particularly interested in working with people who consider themselves to be from backgrounds that are currently underrepresented in the arts sector.
Supported by Arts Council England, The Society for Theatre Research & The GAP Arts Project.

Youth Rules Lockdown 2021 – Exhibition

Each piece in this exhibition was submitted as an entry to the Youth Rules Lockdown 2021 competition. This competition was run throughout January and February through schools, colleges and community organisations across the Hall Green locality. It was run by a youth project called Youth Covid Challenge that, with NHS England funding, has been working with young people across the same locality to retell Covid messages in a way that relates to them.

The competition required participants, aged 10-18, to respond to the brief: ‘how have you stayed safe and positive throughout lockdown?’, through artwork, digital skills, or writing. As you can see, the results have been amazing and incredibly diverse. It is a testament to the wide variety of lives and experiences of the pandemic throughout this unique corner of Birmingham. The two age categories (10-14 and 15-18) each have three winners respectively, bronze, silver and gold, and were decided on by a panel of young people from the local area who have participated in Youth Covid Challenge on a weekly basis since December.

The Runners Up

The Winners (10-14)

Tallulah (Bronze), Ryan (Silver), Isobel (Gold)

The Winners (15-18)

Jago (Bronze), Akram, Kishore and Deneal (Silver), Cherry (Gold)

Arts and Health activities survey for Artists and Arts organisations

Art Works are currently collating information about ‘Arts and Health’ activities across the area to assist Hall Green Neighbourhood Network Scheme with planning and commissioning activities for residents.

We understand that many activities will be on pause or in planning stages at the moment. Please answer these questions based on your ‘normal’ or planned activities without Covid-19 restrictions.

We would be grateful if you could complete the form by 12 noon, Friday 19th March. If the embedded form below is not working, please use this link.

How not to exclude Artist parents

Artist Joanne Masding has pulled together some important and useful guidelines ‘How not to exclude Artist parents’.

This is welcome not just for Artists with children, but for those with other caring responsibilities. Unless we can ensure equity in access we are excluding important voices from arts and culture.

You can view the full guidelines over on her Instagram feed.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CMAw_ISFR5W/

Arts Connect’s Leadership Development Programme

Are you an active/aspiring leader within arts and culture? Are you passionate about learning & engagement with children & young people?

Consider applying for Arts Connect’s Leadership Development Programme.

Art Works’ Co-ordinator Rachel Gillies joined five years ago and is still finding it valuable, especially the annual leadership convention (quite aside from the cake offering!). She is very happy to chat with anyone who is wanting to find out more. E-mail her at hello@artworkshallgreen.co.uk.

Gush Theatre’s Theatre Mix @ home – slots available

Theatre Mix @ Home is a live-streamed performance night for West Midlands artists – scripted, devised, music, spoken word, cabaret and more. We’re open minded! We have Artist Slots and Open Slots available for our next event.

Where? Your place
When? Thursday 11th March 2021 at 8pm

More information and how to apply can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1cmPBM8-6em8aRY6F5sN4j_Hua0fTSoDa3x-dI1AA5D4/edit?usp=sharing

Contact: theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com

[IMAGE DESCRIPTION: A blue background with an orange circle in the top left corner. Text reads: “THEATRE MIX @ home. A cross-artform performance night featuring a range of West Midlands creative talents, live-streaming from home. Got something you’d like to perform? ARTIST SLOTS. Programmed by organisers. Paid. 15 – 20 minutes. Online application. Fee: £100 solo / £200 duo. Deadline: 25/02/21. OPEN SLOTS. First come, first served. Unpaid . Up to 5 minutes. Online submission form. Drink provided. Deadline: 04/03/21 (slots might get filled sooner). Where? Your place. When? 11th March 2021 (evening). To apply: See links in description or email theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com for more info.” At the bottom are logos for The Mix cafe, Arts Council England and The Society for Theatre Research.]

Job Opportunities from Unlimited

Unlimited, a disability-led arts commissioning programme, are currently transitioning to being an independent organisation.

We are recruiting for a full-time Artist Support role who will help support Unlimited artists and coordinate, deliver, and evaluate Unlimited activities, alongside the team, helping develop and working within the new organisation’s guidelines and policies. The position is open for applicants based anywhere in the UK.

The salary for this role is between £23,000 and £25,000 depending on experience. 
Deadline to apply is 12 noon Friday 12 March 2021.


We are also recruiting a Visual Identity brief. We are looking for someone/a team who will work with us on a freelance basis to create a visual identity which: 

  • Can be used to launch the new organisation, signify its evolution into a new organisation, and to mark this next stage in Unlimited’s development 
  • Reflects Unlimited’s new mission and values 
  • Is designed with accessibility at its heart, meeting the highest accessibility standards and created for and with the involvement of disabled artists 

The fee for this contract is£5000 including VAT. Deadline to apply is5pm on Friday 26 February 2021.


We encourage people from any background to apply to either roles. We are committed to creating a team which is representative of our society, and to bringing together those with a variety of skills and experiences to help shape what we do and how we work.

Full information on the roles, including job description and how to apply, can be found here: https://weareunlimited.org.uk/new-roles-want-to-work-for-advise-support-unlimited/

Who cares? At what price? The hidden costs of socially engaged arts labour and the moral failure of cultural policy.

An interesting paper by Professor Eleonora Belfiore on how Artists involved in community based work should/could be supported.

We really welcome an open discussion about how Artists in our area can be supported to do their best work and engage with local residents in a meaningful way. Often that means that Artists themselves need to be supported with plenty of opportunities for development and nurture. Professor Belfiore’s paper is a really welcome contribution to this discussion.

If you wish to direct people to papers, articles, websites, organisations, courses or conferences then please share generously – we’re very happy to publish contributions here!

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1367549420982863

Request for schools, colleges and exhibition venues within Hall Green

Hall Green Families, as part of Accord Housing, have been awarded NHS England funding to recruit young people to co-design covid, winter & mental health messages.

Our young people are age 11 to 18 who live, study and work in Hall Green locality, which includes Sparkbrook, Sparkhill, Moseley, Kings Heath, Balsall Heath and Hall Green. We work in subgroups, which enable us to make the most of our time, resources and skills.

We are looking for schools and colleges to collaborate with. Ideally this will be within your school curriculum as part of, not limited to, art, ICT or design.

The aim is for your learners to produce something  that can be exhibited or interacted with, hopefully in the public, to showcase their work and achievements. We want young people to set the agenda, hence why we haven’t outlined what will be created.

We will work together to map out the right questions for your young people, as everyone as different needs.

We would love for this exhibition to highlight the voice of young people and their Covid experiences in 2020.

We are also looking for venues within Hall Green to exhibit the final work.

If your school would like to be involved, or if you are interested in showcasing the project, please contact Project Manager Simarjeet.Kaur@accordgroup.org.uk.

Public Health Arts Commissions

Public Health are seeking to work with a series of creative arts providers to develop arts based COVID-19 messaging, particularly through different cultural mediums, to engage with different ethnic communities. This work will support the COVID champion programme which currently has 523 members across the 69 wards in the City. 

We are looking for Arts based programmes that will engage residents in activities which contribute to the protection and health and wellbeing of Birmingham residents. Arts and Health interventions capture the public’s attention, meet them where they consume information and convey reliable messages in ways that are accessible across languages, ages, cultural affiliations and education levels. The Arts have been shown to be an effective and efficient means for communicating health information to larger audiences. This method enhances emotional engagement with messages and optimises social learning patterns and motivation to change behaviours. Arts in Health Education is used to create memorable messages with outcomes which will be enhanced by strategic approaches of multiple modes of communication.

The provider(s) will be required to have relevant track record of delivering Creative and/or Art’s based projects.

A Contemporary Music with under 25’s
B African and Caribbean Music
C Central and Eastern European Music
D Asian Music
E Visual Arts with 30 to 50 year old’s
F Spoken Word and Poetry with 60+
G Spoken Word and Poetry with the under 18’s
H Theatre with intergenerational families

Please note that Bidders may express an interest in one, multiple or all Lots under this tender.

The Council will be using its free to use e-tendering system (in-tend) for the administration of this procurement process and potential suppliers must register with the system to be able to express an interest. If you wish to express an interest in this opportunity please click on the following link to access https://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc/ and submit your details to register. You will then be sent details on how to log on which will enable you to download all relevant quotation documentation. 

If you are unable to register with In-tend or have any questions or problems on how to use this web site please either email us at: cps@birmingham.gov.uk or call CPS Helpdesk on 0121 464 8000.

Your completed quotation submission should be returned by noon on 5th February 2021 via the ‘in-tend’ system https://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc

Balsall Heath Artist Survey for 2022 Commonwealth Festival

Are you an Artist or Creative Practitioner, living or working in the Balsall Heath area?

Celebrating Sanctuary (CSB) is working in partnership with Gap Arts, Ort Gallery and Craftspace to plan and design a project and event for 2022 as part of the Commonwealth Cultural Festival.

As local artists we would like your views and input in its design. This process will influence how we approach an inclusive, community focussed project & event in the Moseley Rd and surrounding areas of Balsall Heath. We want to identify emerging and established artists in the area, especially those from refugee and migrant backgrounds who could be involved in artist development, performance & exhibition opportunities, or delivering creative workshops.

We will be holding some online consultation sessions this month which will be advertised soon. But in the meantime, we have created this short online survey to find out who the local artists are, what they do and what their views and needs are. The survey is very short, so we ask you to please take 5 minutes to give us your feedback.

Thank you for your time and consideration. We look forward to hearing from you.

Ort Gallery Wellbeing Messages

Wellbeing Messages written by local primary school children are being sent to the elderly in the Balsall Heath and Sparkbrook community spreading festive joy and support during the ongoing hardships caused by the pandemic.

Ort Gallery worked with artist Sabba Khan, whose work is an exploration of first world city life as a second generation Azad Kashmiri Muslim migrant. She explores themes of belonging, memory and identity underpinned by philosophical and psychotherapy concepts that explore the nature of self within and outside of the collective.

Sabba created 6 postcards in co-design with local women that are being shared with our community as part of the recovery period mid/post-lockdown. The idea is to spread a positive message and remind people that they are not alone. Moreover they also encourage people to look after their mental health.

The elderly in the community are receiving the messages through foodbank parcels and through the delivery service of hot means by the Muath Trust who reach up to 90 elderly people each week.

Pupils from two local primary schools – Ark Tindal Academy and Nelson Mandela Primary wrote personalised messages to the elderly in the community to spread festive joy this December and to send hope and solidarity to those in the community cut off from family and friends. The project will support the elderly to write back to their young penpals.

The Wellbeing Messages project was supported by The Community Fund.

Connect ME digital residency programme

The Arab British Centre, in partnership with the British Council, is pleased to announce that applications are now open for the Winter edition of their Connect ME digital residency programme.

Connect ME pairs creatives based in the GCC (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates) and the United Kingdom to create collaborative digital work over a 4-week programme of online mentoring.

The Connect ME programme was devised earlier in 2020 as a response to the Covid 19 pandemic, and as a digital continuation of the Arab British Centre’s creative exchange programme Making Marks, which promotes creative exchange and international collaboration between the UK and Gulf countries. Connect ME thus focuses on connecting creatives aged 18-30 based in the GCC countries and the United Kingdom to create new collaborative work that considers how digital tools can encourage connectivity across borders.

The outcomes are completely up to the pairs, and we welcome applications from all creative backgrounds – writers, musicians, visual artists, performers, and everything in between! – the only stipulations are the work must be delivered to the public through digital channels and it must be in collaboration. The four selected participants will benefit from a residency fee of £1000, guidance and support from The Arab British Centre and a dedicated mentor from a cultural organisation. The works created will be featured on the Making Marks website, the digital home of all artworks created under the programme, and participants will benefit from a social media campaign promoting their work globally across both the Arab British Centre and British Council channels.

You can explore the work created by Rawan AlMahrouqi and Alexis Maxwell, and Alaa Tarabzouni and Ellie Niblock as part of the Summer Residency which ran from July-August 2020.

Eligible Participants

  • Are creative practitioners/artists of any discipline aged 18-30 and based in the United Kingdom or in the GCC (countries include Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates).
  • Have an interest in collaborative working and in digital creative production. This project will rely on the participants being comfortable and excited about creating new digital work and incorporating technology into their practices – a good base level understanding of social platforms and digital technologies is therefore desirable.
  • Must be available to participate in the project during the dates specified in the Open Call.
  • Participants will also be encouraged to document their experiences of the collaboration through their and the Centre’s social media channels.
  • Creative possibilities of digital technologies and collaboration across borders are at the core of this project, so a good sense of teamwork, curiosity for exploring new ideas, and strong and open communication skills are essential qualities.
  • The programme will be run in English. A conversational level of English is desirable. Written work can be submitted in Arabic for translation by the Arab British Centre. Please do get in touch if you wish to discuss this and think that there may be ways we can support you.
  • A pair cannot be changed once the project has commenced, and it is each pair’s responsibility to ensure that they work well together to produce the project outcomes.
  • Participants must have internet access to take part in this residency

Committed by the Participant

We are looking for responses that will explore the connectivity and capacity of current digital tools and social platforms. Participants commit to:

  • Take part in weekly mentoring sessions and delivery of artist response throughout the month of the programme (from mid-January to mid-February)
  • Artists must be able to commit to a minimum of 2 hours of contact time with the Arab British Centre and/or lead mentor per week of the programme, and dedicate sufficient time to deliver their project over the month. Please note: time management will be the responsibility of the collaborating pairs.
  • Submit final work by the agreed date.
  • Share their progress and participation through social media channels
  • Deliver participatory activities in line with project and agreed with the Arab British Centre (talk, workshop, Insta-live, etc).

Offered by The Arab British Centre

  • £1000 artist fee (per participant). This includes development and delivery
  • £500 material budget available per paired group (upon budget submission and approval by the Arab British Centre)
  • Note: Material budgets will be paid upfront upon submission and approval of proposal and budget. 40% of participation fee will be paid up-front, 60% of participation fee will be paid on completion of the project.
  • Weekly mentoring/crit sessions with Arab British Centre, lead mentor and visiting artists and curators (Delivered via Zoom)
  • The Arab British Centre will actively support participants to build professional networks and connections.
  • Communications support and dissemination of work online

How to Apply

Fill out the online application form on the Making Marks website in English or Arabic and remember to include/send:

  • A 90 second video of you telling us about yourself and your work in English. Production value is not important – a selfie video is fine! – we just want to hear you talk about your work in your own words.
  • An artist CV, portfolio or link to your current website and social media channels

Note: Applicants who applied for the previous ConnectME residency are welcome to apply again.

Theatre Mix @ Home: Open Slots

CALLING ALL BIRMINGHAM-BASED PERFORMERS, THEATRE-MAKERS & CREATIVES

Have you created something before or during lockdown that you’ve not had a chance to perform yet? Theatre Mix is a performance night featuring a whole range of what Birmingham has to offer – scripted, devised, music, spoken word, cabaret, physical theatre and more. We’re open minded!

We’re taking our next event online, live-streaming all performers from their own homes. We have open slots available for short pieces up to 3mins. These slots will be first come, first served for each art form.

Open slots are unpaid. At live, in-person events we pay travel expenses to open slots. For Theatre Mix @ Home, we will send you a drink instead!

Where: Your place
When: 17th December 2020 (evening)

Interested?
Please fill out this form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdORoJTOIAlSVM06AR8voon9awvMbyPq5CCPwXSWcmFm0iyFA/viewform?usp=sf_link
Or send a video submission answering the questions in the form.

If you have any questions, would like help applying or want application in another format please email theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com
Submissions will close at 5pm on Wednesday 9th December, but may close sooner if all slots are filled before this date.

Note: You will need a stable internet connection and a device to record from (smartphone, laptop etc).

GUSH Theatre welcome applications from everyone regardless of age, sex, gender identity, ethnicity, socio-economic background, sexual orientation, religion or disability. We are particularly interested in working with people who consider themselves to be from backgrounds that are currently underrepresented in the arts sector.

Supported by Arts Council England, The Society for Theatre Research & The GAP Arts Project.

Info: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1elHOOCoWIN1Aqo0GQ21fJvoO2mLFvkAruq6JogMV18I/edit?usp=sharing

[Image description; A blue background with the text “Theatre Mix @ Home Open Slots. Got a short piece you’d like to perform? We have open slots available for pieces up to 3 mins. These slots are first come, first served for each art form. At live, in-person events, we pay travel expenses for open slots, but for this event we will send you a drink instead! Where: Your place. When: 17th December 2020 (evening). To apply: See description or email theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com for more info.”

Theatre Mix @ Home: Artist Call Out

CALLING ALL BIRMINGHAM-BASED PERFORMERS, THEATRE-MAKERS & CREATIVES.

Have you created something before or during lockdown that you’ve not had a chance to perform yet, or are looking for further performance opportunities?

Theatre Mix is a performance night featuring a whole range of what Birmingham has to offer – scripted, devised, music, spoken word, cabaret, physical theatre and more. We’re open minded!

We’re taking our next event online, live-streaming all performers from their own homes. We are looking for 3 acts to perform around 15 minutes of work.

Where: Your place
When: 17th December 2020 (evening)
Fee: £100 per act

Interested?
Please fill out this form: https://forms.gle/VjZfxZBbrKustzuT9
Submissions will close at 5pm on Thursday 3rd December. We aim to get back to everyone on Friday 4th.

If you have any questions, need help applying or want the application in another format, please email theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com

Note: You will need a stable internet connection and a device to record from (smartphone, laptop etc).

GUSH Theatre welcome applications from everyone regardless of age, sex, gender identity, ethnicity, socio-economic background, sexual orientation, religion or disability. We are particularly interested in working with people who consider themselves to be from backgrounds that are currently underrepresented in the arts sector.

Info: https://docs.google.com/…/18ux4OqW2H3rpdESYmbfqWdhoDb…/edit…

Supported by Arts Council England, The Society for Theatre Research and The GAP Arts Project.

[Image description; A blue background with text reading “Theatre Mix @ Home Artist Slots. We’re taking our next event online, live-streaming performers from their own homes. We are looking for 3 acts to perform around 15 minutes of work. Where: Your place. When: 17th December 2020 (evening). Fee: £100 per act. To apply: See description or email theatremixbirmingham@gmail.com for more info.”

Wanted: Technician for 2x live-streamed events

GUSH Theatre are seeking a freelance technician to live-stream two performance events. The role will involve facilitating one live-stream remotely (all performers will be in their own homes), and working alongside a videographer to facilitate the second live-stream from our host venue in Balsall Heath.

Fee: £400

Event dates: 17/12/20, 14/01/21

Venue: The MIX Community Café, Old Print Works, 500 Moseley Road, Balsall Heath, Birmingham B12 9AH

All info and how to apply can be found on this Google Doc: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DtnAbUfdXfy7R47t9tJYdGE_Q3Foxr_5dY_AEkpvPaE/edit?usp=sharing

If you have any questions or would like the info in a different format, email us at gushtheatre@gmail.com

GUSH Theatre welcome applications from everyone regardless of age, sex, gender identity, ethnicity, socio-economic background, sexual orientation, religion or disability. We are particularly interested in working with people who consider themselves to be from backgrounds that are currently underrepresented in the arts sector.

Supported by Arts Council England , The Society for Theatre Research and The GAP Arts Project.

[Image description: A blue background with the text “Wanted: Technician for live-stream. GUSH Theatre are seeking a technician to facilitate a live-stream for two performance events in Birmingham, taking place in December 2020 and January 2021. Fee: £400. GUSH Theatre are a Birmingham-based theatre company who make original work and host regular Theatre Mix events to platform local artists. We are seeking a freelance technician with their own equipment to live-stream two events. One event will be remote, the other will take place at our host venue in Balsall Heath. Event dates: 17/12/2020, 14/01/2021. To apply: see description or email gushtheatre@gmail.com.”]

ArtWorks Alliance – better participatory arts

ArtWorks Alliance is a national network of organisations and individuals with a passion for participatory arts and an understanding that working together to strengthen support for those working in the field will bring benefits for everyone involved. Rachel Gillies explains why creative professionals in our area should consider joining as members.

So many creative professionals across our area approach working with community participants with compassion and empathy. We know the power of creative projects when we give participants the power to edit and author, to steer the direction of a project and see their decisions reflected in a final piece of work. We undertake this work because we want to give those we work with the best possible experience and realise the potential of creativity.

To do this well, however, can be a huge challenge. Constraints with funding, time, partners, reporting, evaluation and so much more can mean that it’s hard to work with the depth and rigour that participants need and deserve.

Fortunately, ArtWorks Alliance understands all of this and more, creating a space and a voice for people who want to develop their practice and advocate for participatory practice. As a membership organisation there is a real diversity of practitioners, in terms of geography, artistic discipline, size of organisation (freelancers are very welcome!) and experience.

Questions arising from the ArtWorks Alliance ‘Gathering’ event in January 2020

Their online Knowledge Bank is a great place to browse through a wide range of reports, reflections and case studies. You can also sign up for their regular newsletters which include a good mix of sector news, reflections on participatory practice as well as funding and work opportunities. Membership is currently free due to recent emergency funding – it entitles you to join in with discussions.

At present it feels as though the West Midlands is underrepresented at the table – let’s get involved in this fantastic community.