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Tuesday, 18 September 2018

MENTORING NEWS

We are delighted to be able to announce the artists we will be working with through the Third Angel Mentoring Scheme, in collaboration with our good friends at Sheffield Theatres, who support the scheme with rehearsal space in the Lyceum and Crucible Theatres. 

The scheme was busy this year. With 36 hours to go until the deadline, we’d had seventeen applications. That almost quadrupled over that last day and a half, to 71 applications in total – more than any of the previous years. Shortlisting was really difficult, with so many interesting, exciting projects that would clearly benefit from the time, money and mentoring support. There were more projects this year where we could see how we could be of use to the projects, where we were (and are) excited about being in the room with the artists.

We made a longlist of half the projects, then the panel met (this year we were joined by Umar Butt, who has worked with us recently on The Department of Distractions and The Journeys, and is doing great work at ARC in Stockton) and got that down to a shortlist of about twenty. And any of those twenty we would have happily mentored, and we are going to try to support some of them in other ways if we can. From that great range of proposals, we looked for the projects that looked like they would travel the furthest in the week with us in Sheffield, those for whom the scheme would have the biggest impact, as well as those that might push us as mentors a little bit too.

However, all of that said, we are very excited to announce the artists we will be working with on TAMS at Sheffield Theatres this year. In the order we will be working with them:

PAPER SMOKERS: MILES APART TOGETHER

Paper Smokers’ Diary of An Expat

Paper Smokers have just had a successful run at the Edinburgh Fringe with their show, Diary of an Expat. We will be working with Katharina Reinthaller, Cecilia Gragnani and Emma Dennis-Edwards on the development of Miles Apart Together, telling the story of three female explorers, Annie “Londonderry” Kopchovsky, Bessie Coleman and Junko Tabei. Between them these women travelled around the world by bicycle, performed spectacular airshows and climbed the highest mountains on earth, fighting prejudice and scepticism as they went. 


MARY-FRANCES DOHERTY: SOPHIE’S SALE

Mary-Frances Doherty’s Certain Things. Photo: KK Dundas

Mary-Frances Doherty will develop Sophie’s Sale (working title) - a show for 12-16year olds about teenage suicide. Recently Mary-Frances has been touring her successful solo show, Katie’s Birthday Party to a number of prestigious international children’s festivals including On The Edge: The World Festival of Theatre for Young Audiences & ASSITEJ Artistic Gathering in Birmingham 2016.


CALLUM BERRIDGE: COMING UP FOR AIR

Callum Berridge’s Orwell’s Voice. Photo: Hannah Anketell.

Callum Berridge will develop Coming Up For Air, a show exploring memory and identity, and how these things are eroded by illness and by politics. It is a show about the coal mining industry in the north of England, the politics of the 1980s and the physiological and psychological effects of Alzheimer’s Disease on the brain. 


VANDAL FACTORY & FLORA GREYSTEEL: ENGLISH DIRT

Vandal Factory’s Whatever Happened to Vandal Raptor?

Early in 2019 we will work with Natalie Quatermass and Henry Raby of Vandal Factory and Emily Rowan and Simon Bolley of Flora Greysteel to develop, English Dirt, a new show exploring themes of historic nationhood and land-ownership and connecting them to contemporary struggles around border controls, fracking legislation and the housing crisis. The group will research traditional English folk songs, historical protest songs and songs connected to nation and use them a vehicle to tell their chosen stories. 

We are really looking forward to working with all of them, and will keep you posted on how their projects

This also seemed like a good time to check in with our 2017/18 mentees, and ask them how they’re doing… we asked them all for a quick update, and this is what they said:

Natalie Wong: An Odyssey

The Orang Collectif’s CIRCE. Photo: Wang Yue

“Since working with Alex during the Third Angel Mentorship Scheme, I’ve gathered much knowledge to not just develop my proposed work but to also create opportunities for it. I have co-created The Orang Collectif, a cross-disciplinary and multicultural collective. And with the collective, I have devised and directed the next vignette of AN ODYSSEY: CIRCE at the Omnibus Theatre, a live movement and music performance with 6 performers. The next vignette that I will be devising is Calypso which will be presented at a live art evening, Sane Asylum co-hosted by The Orang Collectif in London.”


Jake Bowen: Plea Bargain

Jake Bowen. Photo: Zain Zia

“Currently I am working behind the scenes – quietly! - on my new show called Death Squad which is a more political performance than my normal work. But while also doing this I am working locally with some of the guys from HOME and The Lowry to help build my Arts Council bid to get my tour sorted for Plea Bargain, hopefully for summer 2019! I’ve hit the ground running since the menteeship and I’m so happy to have had the chance to work with my favourite artists in the performance scene and it is genuinely fueling me to make something of myself.


Jess Gibson: Work In Progress

Jess Gibson’s Work In Progress. Photo: @TriumvirateMedia

“When I applied for TAMS in 2017 I had an idea - to make a show about my experience of having Borderline Personality Disorder, Anxiety and Depression. I had been working with other artists within the theatre community in Sheffield to help bring their ideas into actuality, but hadn’t the confidence to pursue my own. TAMS was the perfect push and offered the support I had needed to rediscover my artistic voice. It really gave me a solid platform, validated my work and gave the invaluable space and time to play with ideas.

During my week in the studio, with the ongoing support from my mentor Rachael Walton, I was able to transform a very basic, 20 minute improvised idea into a 45 minute structured, autobiographical and even comical piece of theatre! As part of the one to one mentoring, I was also advised to seek out opportunities to scratch the work to audiences so I could begin to gain feedback for it’s next development stages. From this I attained a slot at Sheffield Theatres’ Making Room Studio Takeover event in January 2018 where I was able to show my work to a live audience. Having this opportunity meant gaining access to contacts such as my current producer (Joseph Willis), enabled me to meet programmers and receive the feedback I really needed to take my work to the next level.

Work In Progress is now an Arts Council Funded show that is booked in for Theatre Deli’s Autumn Programme with it’s premier on 10th October 2018

I am very fortunate to have found such a wonderful team of creatives who believe in the work and who are helping me bring the performance lots of life! Since TAMS, I feel I have gone from an artist who was shying away from pursuing her ideas to a fully realised creative who is on her way to booking a tour. This work may not have been without the support from Third Angel and I can’t recommend the mentoring scheme enough for artists at any stage of their career.”


The Outbound Project: M.E.H.

Chloe Holliday, Gordon Millar, Phoebe Stapleton, Lucy Bishop, Blain Neale and Belisa Branças in M.E.H. Photo: Nick Gilbert, edited by Jordan Turner

“Since working with Third Angel, our project, M.E.H., has progressed through to development stage. We are currently working on a script, have a fantastic cast in place and hoping to stage the first performances in mid-November at New Diorama, London. Following on from the early Research and Development with Third Angel, we have secured further partnerships to make this production possible and hope to tour in Spring/Autumn 2019.”


Holly Gallagher: Tensile Strength

“The mentorship scheme was a great success for me - it gave me the space, time, freedom, and guidance to explore a new piece of work! It was also such a joy to work closely with Alex and to pick up some new approaches to work. Since completing the scheme I have gone on to have a fully-funded rehearsal period with the work wherein I used some of the approaches I was introduced to during my week. And I have also made great new working professional connections thanks to my association with Third Angel and the faith they showed in my practice by picking me for the scheme!

Tensile Strength (or How to Survive at Your Wit’s End) is about to embark on a national tour! It has two Autumn dates before more extensive touring in 2019: Theatre Deli in Sheffield on Tuesday 9 October, and ARC Stockton on Wednesday 7 November.”

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