Animate is a registered Community Interest Company (non-profit making organisation) that breaks down barriers and creates new theatre opportunities to those who ordinarily may not be able to gain access to this. We teach a variety of skills to enable those to be more confident working independently as well as in a group. Animate creates a fun, relaxed space, welcoming those from all walks of life and giving a voice to all. Animate provides theatre opportunities for people with disabilities. We hire professional practitioners in drama, dance, music, theatre design and film to teach those who ordinarily wouldn't get the chance to learn these skills.
We are addressing the need to give people with additional needs the opportunity to learn new skills in the theatre. These skills are also transferable, so we make sure we teach skills that are empowering which they can take out in the community and into their everyday. We create team building exercises and aim to create a comfortable and safe environment focusing on how each individual can work towards individual goals which will enable them to become more confident and independent.
Animate are planning to put on performances of William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream in July 2019. The whole group will have an involvement in making the set and props for the production although costume will, largely, need to be hired. The performance days will include 2 days of technical rehearsals followed by 5 performances. Technical support, including lighting and sound equipment will need to be hired for the performance period and final rehearsals. It is planned to tour the production around different venues in Plymouth and the surrounding area as we are looking to show that Shakespeare is accessible for everyone and that our Animate’s performers can portray Shakespeare with as much skill and sensitivity as mainstream actors and actresses.
In Midsummer Night’s Dream there is a theme of people judging people based on first impressions and perceptions until they get to know that person. This makes this play particularly relevant for the Animate Theatre Company as our members often get places in a metaphorical box even though they are capable of some amazing things on stage and in their everyday lives.
With the help of the Crowdfunder we can turn this ambition into a reality and allow the disabled people who form our company to show their community what they can do and how brilliantly they can do it. Animate has ambitions to increase its numbers by starting a second group and a tour such as the one we are proposing will encourage other disabled people to join us and benefit from all that Animate can offer from helping with confidence and life skills to making friends.