Take Part in 2022
If you are looking for information about our event for Visually Impaired children and families at Westonbirt Arboretum, please click here.
Wild Child is a new collection of socially engaged outdoor experiences.
Families and community audiences become the co-creators, guided through a range of creative tasks involving the senses, movement and working in outdoor spaces.
Every experience is different and created live, working with the natural environment.
Our performance experience is accessible to visually impaired and sighted audiences equally, as we find creative ways to ensure access for everyone. The event will involve creative audio description written by visually impaired artist, Holly Thomas, and Audio Describer, Louise Fryer.
how it all began in 2021
During 2021, Louise had the opportunity to further develop the idea of creatively exploring outdoor adventure and our connection to nature, with a particular focus on the accessibility of the concept for Visually Impaired (V.I.) audiences.
The explorations have involved spending time in woodlands in Gloucestershire, allowing time to fully immerse in the local landscape and environment; identifying what makes these spaces unique and special. These explorations started with using the senses, deeply rooted in the concept of participatory co-creation to generate movement scores.
Working with Rosemary Lee (Mentor) it allowed time for Louise to find a clear vision, fusing together her passions for participation, the outdoors, and equality.
“It’s been a pleasure to mentor Louise during her research and development of this project, it was so good to witness how engaged the families were in the initial experiences. Louise and the performers gently held the event beautifully.” Rosemary Lee, Mentor.
Summer 2022 so far
In Spring Summer 2022, eleven families joined us at Westonbirt Arboretum. Exploring interactive participation and performance experiences, the families were invited to join us and co-create in the outdoors in a new creative, kinaesthetic, and sensory way.
We found forest treasures, created a suspended mobile in the trees and witnessed it come to life through movement, created animal shelters, took part in mindful listening, and made soundscapes and moving artworks.
Interwoven with audio description throughout, the experience was co-designed and co-delivered with Visually Impaired dance artist, Holly Thomas.
feedback from families
“The audio description made the performance come to life more for her (child) but as a dyslexic adult it did the same for me too.”
“Lovely relaxed day. Exploring things that we could do outside of the session together.”
“It was a very happy, relaxed day and a lovely opportunity meet other VI families in a pressure free setting.”
“It’s a fantastic opportunity to meet other families with vi children and expand their experience of nature and performance art.”
“Not many creative events available normally…Also this capitalised on other senses”
“All the children were welcome to join in as much or as little as they were happy with.”
A case study
The mother of one participant has told us the significant impact the event had on both herself and her visually impaired daughter.
Her daughter doesn’t have many connections with other VI children, so it meant a lot to meet Holly as someone she could related to.
Their favourite part was seeing the a performer bring the co-created woodland mobile to life through movement, and how the Audio Description enriched both their expeirence of the performance.
“I had tears in my eyes (as I do right now). Happy tears because I could tell just how much [my daughter] was gaining from the experience but sad tears too as I’ve realised how much she is expected to conform to a fully sighted world.” Parent
- Cirencester Dance Club (Interdepen-Dance)
- Cirencester Opportunity Group
collaborating artists for 2022/23
We are developing our workshop experiences to create a performance touring offer for festivals and events. Follow us on socials to keep up to date with what we are up to!
Holly Thomas Lead collaborator | Bryn Thomas Performer | Linzy Na Nakorn Performer | Marie-Louise Flexen Performer | Tim Casson Mentor / Dramaturg | Dr Louise Fryer Audio Describer | Lee Pretious Videographer & Photographer
Visit our About Us page for more information on our creative team.
take part with us
- Performance event for invited audience
Children and families who have taken part in our creative workshops are invited to a permance event at Westonbirt Arboretum on 8th October 2022. There will be a performance, a session to try the creative activities yourselves and time to socialise & explore the surroundings at Westonbirt.
If you have been involved in our workshops in 2022 and would like to attend, please get in touch with us for an information pack.
- Creative outdoor experience for Visually Impaired Children and Families
We are hosting another event for visually impaired children (aged 5-12 years) and families families on 23rd July. We’ll be returning to Westonbirt Arboretum for day of creative outdoor activities and performance for the whole family to take part in.
Click here for the information about this event and how to get involved.
- Bookable creative outdoor workshops & experiences
Our creative outdoor experiences are bookable. For each group we work with, we have preparatory conversations to ensure we create an experience which which is bespoke to the group needs and what they want to get out of the activities.
If you are a community group, school or venue and interested in our projects, please get in touch about how we could work together.