Based in Basingstoke, Fluid Motion Theatre Company creates and performs pieces covering a range of mental health themes, as well as delivering education and community-based work. We spoke to them about their experiences with Artsmark and engaging with children and young people in the region.
A: Tell us a bit about yourselves.
FM: Fluid Motion Theatre Company was founded on the idea that theatre can play an important role in developing the creativity of children and young people, enhancing their skills and developing self-esteem and confidence along the way. We have been delivering work in schools for the last seven years and have supported those who have been working towards their Artsmark.
“Artsmark is a fantastic way to inspire young people, giving them high quality arts experiences and opportunities that they may not have had otherwise.”
(Fluid Motion Theatre Company)
In 2016, we delivered 420 workshops, 25 public performances and engaged directly with more than 2000 people. We exist to raise awareness, challenge stigma, educate and empower through the creation of theatre.
A: What shapes your approach to mental health education through theatre?
FM: We have recently redeveloped our education programme to focus on promoting good mental health as well as raising general awareness of the topic. Mindfulness can play an important part in helping students to be calm, focused and creative. It can also be beneficial to teacher wellbeing. Our workshops for students and staff blend drama techniques and Mindfulness together to create a series of fun, practical sessions that can potentially have a big impact on those taking part.
“It’s vital to give children the chance to work with professional organisations to further their learning, and to inspire them in different ways. Fluid Motion are a great partner to work with – they always offer a high quality and professional service and really listen to the needs of the school.”
(Ian Potter, Headteacher, Bay House School & Sixth Form)
A: What have you been working on recently?
Over the last two years we have developed several new projects, including our All in the Mind Festival. This exciting new arts event is aimed at challenging preconceived ideas about mental health. The festival covers everything from theatre, poetry, film, dance, music and visual arts and brings together professional artists, young people and the wider community to celebrate artistic achievement and raise awareness of mental health issues.
“This is the kind of festival that I want to see happening everywhere. It’s the best way to bring people together who haven’t felt like they had a voice before.”
You can see a video from our first festival (which took place in 2016) here
This year’s festival will take place on Saturday 24th June. Find out more here
A: Sounds brilliant. Any hot tips for schools currently working towards their Artsmark?
FM: We are extremely excited to be offering Artsmark schools 10% off any of our three Mindfulness workshops: Introduction to Mindfulness, Calm Classroom and Mindfulness Relaxation.
Please contact us via [email protected] to find out more!