Blog: We're still Open!

25 March 2020

c. Geraldine Heaney
c. Geraldine Heaney

A week has now passed since our decision to cancel the Edinburgh International Children’s Festival in May, and what a week it has been!

In that time, we have started discussing how we will adapt to work with the people we care about, artists, families and schools who all face different challenges, and thought we would update you on our plans. The work we do in the coming weeks will be announced on the news section of our website and our social media pages so make sure you check it if you want to know what we’re up to.

First of all, we are still open! We are working remotely from home and while we’re working differently we are still here to support and celebrate the Children’s Theatre and Dance sector, especially now.

Support for artists

So if you are an artist or are interested in making work for young audiences, please continue to contact us as you would have done in the past. You may want to consult this area of our website which lists the various opportunities offered by Imaginate to support artists. We can also provide some advice if you are making a funding application, particularly to Creative Scotland’s new funds, so please don’t hesitate to contact us. We may be a little bit slower than usual to respond but we will!

Ideas Fund to support artists and families

We have also launched a special Ideas Fund to support artists and offer new opportunities to create work. These small grants will be awarded by a panel and will fund artists to develop creative ideas to occupy and inspire children and families isolated at home because of the virus. We are currently fundraising to increase the award total, and any help to support will be deeply appreciated. If you are in a position to, please donate here.

We are confident artists will come with innovative ideas, sparked by theatre and dance, of things that can be experienced in some way by children and young people in their home. The first deadline for artists to submit ideas is 1 April (not a joke).

Schools projects

We had a number of schools projects running as part of our year-round programme which have had to be adapted. As part of Immerse, we successfully finished The Lost Lending Library in partnership with Punchdrunk and were mid-way through a number of artists residencies, with sharings scheduled for the end of the term. While sadly we had to finish these residencies prematurely, we are working with all the artists involved to continue the creativity and adventure with each class who took part. So far this has included sharing film footage, photographs, letter writing and more. Here is the film artists Geraldine Heaney and Katy Wilson sent to the class they were working with at Brunstane Primary.

All the artists in residence have also written some great blogs about what they were up to in each of the projects. Just check our website's news and blog section to learn more.

Our Theatre in Schools Scotland programme is obvioulsy cancelled while schools are closed but we are hoping to reschedule the current tours of Lifeboat and Cloud Man in the future.

We will keep you posted about what Imaginate is up to in that section over the coming week, so please keep visiting our website or follow us on social media @ImaginateUK.

Take care and stay safe!