Imaginate, a year-round organisation supporting and developing theatre for young audiences, has announced a new programme in honour of its 30th anniversary year. Its Children’s Festival programme includes an immersive theatrical production from sensory-focused and interactive Punchdrunk, two new commissions from Scottish theatre-makers, and an exciting year-round schools programme.
At the Bute House programme launch, CEO of Imaginate Paul Fitzpatick, stated that the goals for this new programme include deepening relationships with schools across Edinburgh and wider Scotland, encouraging new works for younger audiences, and developing stronger international relationships. These new programmes will stand in place for the next three years.
Some highlights for the 30th anniversary year include:
- Inspiring Schools: A year-round innovative theatrical experiences offer for schools, particularly in areas of high deprivation, which use creative approaches to boost skills in reading, writing and listening. Artists residencies in schools, as well as an extension of the Theatre in Schools Scotland programme and a Teacher’s Theatre Club, will be more offerings. Inspiring Schools is sponsored by Bailie Gifford, National Theatre of Scotland, and PLACE, a unique three-way partnership between the Scottish Government, the City of Edinburgh, and Edinburgh festivals.
- An enhanced Festival programme: A interactive production, Small Wonder from Punchdrunk where children are invited inside the home of an elderly miniaturist, performing in Scotland for the first time, and four Scottish productions. The Children’s Festival will run from Saturday 25 of May to 2 June 2019.
- PUSH+ : A three-year Creative Europe-funded project focused on the ideas of Home, Failure and Different Bodies, enabling Imaginate to forge stronger links with four European countries through labs, residencies and international workshops as the UK faces leaving the European Union.
- Accelerator: Increased support for artists over the next three years, to bring new ideas to production through a residency and support programme Accelerator.
- Archiving Project: An opportunity for the public to explore Imaginate’s rich history of festivals and projects for the first time, online and at the Scottish Theatre Archive.
With more opportunities for younger audiences, innovate theatrical commissions, and a dedication to building stronger and deeper artistic and educational relationships, Imaginate has geared up for an impressive and impactful three years.
Artistic Director of Punchdrunk Pete Higgins believes that “access to creativity can transform a child’s prospects,” a value which beats at the heart of Imaginate and its new programme launch for children in Edinburgh, wider Scotland, and even internationally.