Seminar – Bridging the Generation Gap

Intergenerational Seminar

Photo from All Change with performers from Avonmouth and children from Stoke Park School in Bristol

Join us on Wednesday 30 June, 2.00pm – 4.00pm for the latest in our series of online interactive seminars, with a focus on intergenerational community theatre and arts. This promises to be a fascinating and insightful event as we are able to draw on both national and international experience and expertise in the form of Magic Me from London, Birds of Paradise Theatre Company from Glasgow, and Mammalian Diving Reflex from Canada. We will also be sharing acta’s wide knowledge and experience of working within an intergenerational context.

Booking Link: CLICK HERE – to book your free ticket

Why Intergenerational?

Intergenerational work is more relevant now than ever, as we emerge into the post-pandemic world. Older people and younger people have been separated and isolated, and this work can help bring back connections and understanding between the generations.

Even within families, if engaged together on an arts project, theatre can open up conversations, and participants can learn to see things from the other’s point of view. Additionally, school children and older people can develop a tangible connection through participating in theatre together, creating and sharing a joint artistic vision, that has a myriad of benefits for both the individuals and society.

In our experience with some of the communities we work with, we have seen how difficult it is to connect with elders from within families when the second and third generations are born in UK. In this seminar we will explore how intergenerational arts projects can help family and community cohesion by developing understanding through working together on a join project. Together, we will address the questions: how and why do we feel this work is important post-pandemic? How can arts projects provide opportunities of intergenerational understanding between all generations?

What to expect:

  • Hear about inspirational intergenerational projects
  • Understand the benefits of this work for participants and organisations
  • Explore how to engage participants
  • Learn the different approaches that our speakers have taken in delivering intergenerational work
  • Discuss the successes and challenges of this type of work

Who is this seminar for?

acta seminars are free and open to everyone. Specifically, for this seminar we welcome:

  • Theatre makers
  • Artists across all disciplines
  • Students and academics
  • Those interested in the power of community and theatre

important details

 The seminar will run from 2.00 – 4.00pm, including a short break. There will be an opportunity to network with other attendees, either after the session or by sharing contact information. Please do let us know if you have any access needs.

Prior to the event, you will be sent the Zoom link via email, and information regarding joining the meeting, including a survey that will allow you to ask our speakers some of your questions ahead of the event.

This seminar programme is part of acta’s Cornerstone project, funded by Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

Guest speakers

Ingrid Jones and Katie Delaney | acta Community Theatre | Bristol, England

acta believe that theatre belongs to everyone, and everyone has a story to tell. They create a place where everyone’s story matters, where individual opinions and experiences count, and are valued by others. Through inclusive and participatory theatre, acta enable communities to share their stories, and engage audiences who rarely attend theatre.

Mairi Taylor | Birds of Paradise Theatre Company | Glasgow, Scotland

Mairi Taylor

A professional, disability-led theatre company that aims to bring about positive change in theatre and the arts.  By recognising and celebrating the excellent work of disabled artists, they make world-class, innovative and accessible work, which reaches national and international audiences.

Mairi Taylor is the Executive Producer at Birds of Paradise Theatre Company which has been putting the stories of disabled people centre stage for 27 years.

Mairi has a wide range of experience in access to and equality in the arts that ranges through award-winning theatre productions, artist development and consultation work with partner organisations that improves disability equality in the arts in Scotland and beyond.

Darren O’Donnell from Mammalian Diving Reflex | Toronto, Canada

Mammalian, named after the survival reflex found in mammals, create site and social-specific performance events, theatre productions, participatory gallery installations and much more, in order to foster dialogue and dismantle barriers. They bring together people of all backgrounds in new and unusual ways.

Darren O’Donnell

Darren O’Donnell is an urban cultural planner, novelist, essayist, playwright, filmmaker, performance director and the Artistic and Founding Director of Mammalian Diving Reflex. His books include: Your Secrets Sleep with Me (2004), Social Acupuncture (2006), and Haircuts by Children and Other Evidence for a New Social Contract (2018), which proposes the cultural sector as a site to pilot a new social contract with children. His performance works include Haircuts by Children, All the Sex I’ve Ever Had, The Children’s Choice Awards and Teentalitarianism. His institutional collaborators include the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, the Humboldt Forum, the Metropolitan Region of Rhine-Neckar, the Schauspielhaus Bochum and the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art.

Catherine Connell | Magic Me | London, England

Magic Me is an arts charity that brings generations together to build a stronger, safer community. Their projects often link unlikely partners together, through shared creative activity. Projects range from music to dance, photography to print, writing to drama. All with the goal of stimulating conversation and exchanging ideas.

Catherine Connell

Catherine has worked in participatory arts for the last decade in a range of settings. Before Magic Me Catherine managed a programme of music projects and performances for Streetwise Opera with groups of people experiencing homelessness. This included working on large scale live opera productions and film projects bringing together professional musicians and non-professional performers with experience of homelessness across the UK.
For the last 4 years at Magic Me Catherine has worked closer to home with communities in East London, on a wide range of projects bringing together groups of older adults and young people with professional artists to create multi-disciplinary artworks and community events spanning film installation and live performance to exhibitions in care homes and intergenerational street festivals.

Booking Link: CLICK HERE – to book your free ticket