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White Rose Learning Centre have hosted an exciting summer project for young people aged 9-12, Summer School Musical, which is to be performed to an invited audience at Leeds Grand Theatre’s Howard Assembly Room on Thursday 12th August. Supported by Find Your Talent Summer School Musical was developed with the aim of creating and producing a musical from start to finish in two weeks.

33 performers, supported by 6 peer mentors (age 14-17) have been selected from Seacroft Manston, Morley and Inner North West areas of the city with the aim of introducing young people to the performing arts and to engage them with the heritage of Leeds Grand Theatre.

Summer School Musical was written, created and rehearsed (at the Howard Assembly Room) within eight days – the young performers have written their own music for the show alongside musicians and artists including Danny Gough, Claire Bleasdale and Naomi Parker.

Themed around ‘a journey through time’ the show centres on a group of teenagers who stumble across a derelict house where they find musical relics from the past which transports them through music from the 1960s into the present day.

The project has taken place at various locations including White Rose Learning Centre, BBC Media Centre at Primrose High, and the Derek Fatchett City Learning Centre. A partnership between Education Leeds Study Support, Leeds Grand Theatre and Extended Services, the project has enabled children and young people to work with a range of artists to develop their creative confidence, build new skills and have the opportunity to perform their own work in this prestigious Yorkshire venue.


Holmfirth artist Kate Woodfield hosted a regular workshop group at Gildersome Children’s Centre for parents and their children during July. The grand opening of the finished mural will take place at a celebration on 23rd July.

The workshops have included a fantastic range of activities including storytelling and crafts which have inspired the creation of the mural. Parents and children have worked together to create acetate mobiles and a curtain with stories and photographs encapsulated in the plastic as part of the garden display. Bright printed cushions and a wicker scarecrow have also been produced for the Gildersome Scarecrow Festival 2010.

The children’s centre has used this opportunity to work with the artist on enhancing their outdoor playspace. It has also supported  parents in finding their creative feet and encouraged families to develop ways of applying their skills in the home environment.

Pupils from St.Joseph’s Primary (Hunslet) and Gildersome Primary created vibrant collages and drawings alongside local artist Steve Pool on Friday morning at Leeds City Art Gallery.

They were joined by Cllr Adam Ogilvie for workshops inspired by some of the vibrant abstract images on Leeds Gallery’s walls.  Many of the children have now entered Friday’s creations into the Open Show competition.  

Pupils from across the city have created paintings, sketches and sculptures over the past few months in the run up to this year’s Open Show, which is supported by the national Find Your Talent programme. Hundreds of entries have already been submitted for this year’s event, organisers are encouraging even more families (young people, children, pre-schoolers and adults) to try out their artistic skills for Leeds Art Gallery’s August opening.

The next Open Show workshops will be held at the gallery on Wednesday 7th of July for the city’s primary and secondary school pupils. There are also free additional Children’s Art Day workshops for families and their children with two all-day workshop events being held on 10th and 17th July.

Children and Young People from various parts of Leeds have taken part in local workshops, especially in areas such as Seacroft, Inner North West, and Morley which are target areas for Find Your Talent in the city. By encouraging families to participate and enter Open Show the gallery hopes to expand on the vibrant entries that have already been received for this year’s event.

Councillor Adam Ogilvie, Executive Board Member for Leisure commented “This year’s Open Show workshops have proved to be a huge hit with young people in Leeds. By encouraging their creativity and artistic talent in an inspirational environment families and their children have produced a wealth of innovative artwork. It just goes to show how art and design can have a positive impact on ambition, aspiration and approaches to the city’s cultural environment.”

Open Show (with support from Find Your Talent) is open for the first time to young people aged 18 and under. The competition is open to anyone from the Yorkshire region aged 0 to over 100.

200 selected young entrants will have their work professionally hung at Leeds City Art Gallery during the summer holidays. The works will be chosen by a panel of young people aged 16-19 from the Leeds Met Gallery Young Curators Group.

Click this link for information on how to enter.

Watch out Leeds – preparations are gathering pace for the start of the Summer School Musical (SSM) 2010!

Last year SSM, delivered by the White Rose Learning Centre, saw young people from Morley work with 3 artists to create a fabulous performance in the space of just one week.

This year the event is raising the bar and joining forces with young people from across the 3 FYT localities to create a performance which will showcase at the Howard Assembly Rooms in Leeds city centre.

SSM is a fantastic platform to build young peoples talent and has been brought to life by the White Rose Learning Team, Derek Fatchett Learning Centre and the BBC Media Centre at Primrose High School. 

This inspiring partnership will support the young people as they are put through their creative paces by musician, Danny Gough; visual artist, Naomi Parker and drama facilitator, Claire Bleasdale.

Another week and another great example of how culture is creating strong community links through the work of Find Your Talent Leeds.

Year 2 children from Asquith Primary School in Morley are exploring the past through a heritage project led by Creative Facilitator, Irene Lofthouse.

Children and their teachers are bringing to life the history of the markets town’s key buildings and landmarks.  The work will form the basis of a child and family friendly Morley heritage trail connecting the experiences of different generations.

This project reflects  a key strand to Find Your Talent Leeds ethos; linking together different partners to engage all children and families in their cultural heritage and connect communities.

Irene has worked with Find Your Talent , Artemis (Education Leeds), Leeds Libraries; Leeds Museums and Galleries; Morley Archives and Morley Local History Group to create an inspirational learning experience for children. It draws on some of the exciting resources Leeds has to offer to make the history of Morley relevant to children who live there now.

Three groups of young people have been meeting regularly in Seacroft Manston, Morley and Inner North West to debate, discuss and make decisions regarding cultural opportunities in Leeds.

Find Your Talent is supporting three groups of young people to become cultural ambassadors for the city.  Each group works in different ways but shares the same aim: to have a young people’s voice in the city’s arts and culture.  The East Leeds group have enjoyed singing, guitar and steel pans at East Leeds Music Centre, had backstage tours of The Carriageworks and West Yorkshire Playhouse and have seen a performance of The Secret Garden. Many had never been to the theatre before.

During the Easter holidays, the three groups came together to meet one another and create a job description for their role as arts ambassador. 

Working alongside FYT and various cultural organisations (including West Yorkshire Playhouse, Carriage Works, and Libraries, Arts & Heritage) the budding arts critics – known as ‘arts ambassadors’ – have shared their ideas and opinions to ensure decision-makers at the local council take into account their views on culture.

The ambassador groups are being given exciting opportunities that will shape and develop their skills in communication, creativity and positive engagement with the arts. Some of these include film, music and drama/theatre visits.

Each participating school will eventually elect its own ‘Arts Ambassador’ for their council who will represent arts and culture at the school. The outcomes from the ambassador groups is helping to shape new directions and positive approaches towards young people in the arts in Leeds – from actual activities through to policy making (such as CYPP).

White Rose Learning Centre have worked in partnership with Find Your Talent to deliver the Performing for Success Arts Award in the Morley area of Leeds.   

The project is currently in its fourth term and has worked with a new batch of pupils each term from Year 6 – 9 at Drighlington and Fountain Primary Schools. Learners have been encouraged to explore the arts and experience a variety of art forms through performance.  

 

Each term has focused on one art form – last year the schools worked with a drama tutor to rehearse and perform an original piece at Leeds Grand Theatre. The pupils also had backstage tours of the West Yorkshire Playhouse. The following term, year 6 pupils worked with DAZL dance facilitators to choreograph a dance piece.

 

This term Performing for Success has worked with the singer/songwriter Danny Gough to write and perform original lyrics which were recorded onto a CD. Pupils were also given backstage tours of Leeds’ historic venues and attended a performance of VOICES: The Forty Part Motet by Janet Cardiff at the Howard Assembly Rooms in Leeds.  

 

As part of the Gifted and Talented National Strategy year 7 pupils (who already have an interest and talent in music) are also working with a musician to compose an original piece which will be performed at a forthcoming celebration event at the White Rose Shopping Centre.

 

Next term the project goes across the city to be replicated out in two other learning centres where the focus will be on radio production, poetry and martial arts; all of which will be accredited through the Arts Award scheme.  

Find Your Talent have been working in partnership with ArtForms and the Gifted and Talented National Strategies team on CPD (Continuing Professional Development) around Talent in the Arts.

 The ‘Talent in the Arts’ project is focused on enhancing classroom practice to create a challenging experience for the benefit for all pupils.  The involvement of a professional artist helps to develop teachers’ confidence and extends and broadens the curriculum.

During the Summer Term, Year 3 and 4 class teachers from Morley and Seacroft Manston schools will work alongside visual artist, Steve Pool, on Talent in the Arts: Visual Art.

The school’s teachers will be supported by the artist to identify children who are demonstrating talent within visual art.   The programme challenges perceptions about what “talent” looks like and which children are considered to be talented.

The identified children from across the schools will spend a day at Leeds Art Gallery working with Steve Pool, the resulting work will support Open Show which is taking place there over the summer.

Talent in the Arts: Drama, is currently taking place with 6 schools from across the city.

The information generated from the Talent in the Arts programmes will form the basis of a resource for all Leeds schools, to be disseminated from September 2010.  It will also support a year long focus on raising the profile of “talent” in the arts in the Leeds localities.

This summer, from 8th August – 19th September 2010 Leeds Art Gallery will host a groundbreaking new version of Open Show; this year’s competition will be open to young people who will be given the opportunity to display their work in this world-renowned gallery.

Open Show is being supported by Find Your Talent and for the first time is open to young people aged 18 and under. The competition is open to anyone from the Yorkshire region aged 0 to over 100.

200 selected young entrants will have their work professionally hung at Leeds Art Gallery during the summer holidays. The works will be chosen by a panel of young people aged 16-19 from the Leeds Met Young Curators Group.

Through a series of artist led workshops young people, pre-school children and their families are creating and talking about art. These free workshops will be taking place across the city including the Find Your Talent locality areas of Inner North West, Morley and Seacroft Manston.

Find Your Talent are investing in this ambitious opportunity to nurture and celebrate the artistic talents of children and young people in Leeds. By displaying their work in one of the city’s major visual arts venues the scheme is communicating a clear message to children and young people that their creativity is valued – and has a key role to play in the cultural life of the city.

For full details on the Open Show competition, entry forms and workshop sessions visit Leeds Art Gallery’s Website.

Leeds Young People’s Film Festival are delighted to be working with Find Your Talent to give young people living in Seacroft Manston, Morley and Leeds Inner North West the opportunity to watch films that take a look at other cultures in a unique way. The films will be screened at Hyde Park Picture House on Monday 29th and Wednesday 31st March 2010.

The festival will be screening the stunning animation Persepolis (a coming of age drama about growing up during the Iranian revolution) and Whale Rider, where a young Maori girl fights to fulfil her destiny – which her grandfather refuses to recognise.

All young people attending the film will receive a fact sheet about the film and the festival is giving each FYT area 10 Golden Family Tickets which allows up to four people to see all the films in the festival for free. The screenings are also open for parents book into.

In addition to the screenings the festival is offering groups of young people from each FYT area the opportunity to become local ambassadors for their areas and act as a focus group for the festival. The ambassadors will be given access all areas passes to see any of the films and can experience any of the workshops or master classes to understand how a festival is programmed and organised.  

It is hoped that by encouraging young people to visit the screenings they will engage and explore the core themes of  cultural diversity and understanding other cultures through the young film festival workshops.

What was FYT?

Find Your Talent was a national programme to explore new ways of opening up cultural and creative opportunities to young people. Leeds was one of the ten FYT Pathfinders in England.

The programme was led by Leeds City Council and Education Leeds, working closely together and with the city's cultural and community sectors to find ways for more young people to participate in the cultural life of the city.

FYT was funded to operate between 2008-2011 but its legacy in Leeds continues through activities under the Breeze banner, as well as other initiatives.