Our purpose as a charity is to advance public education in the arts with particular reference to the art of theatre and Greek classical drama. Our passion is to ensure that this intrinsic part of our dramatic heritage remains accessible to modern audiences, in theatres, in schools and beyond.
aod was founded in 1993 and since then we have delivered over 55 radical and highly visual productions of ancient Greek drama, performing to over 750,000 people and becoming the UK’s leading interpreters in this field. aod is divided into 3 strands:
aodProductions - Touring new theatrical adaptations of ancient Greek drama and new writing inspired by classical mythology
aodEducation - Touring high quality productions and producing a varied outreach programme for schools, colleges and young people
aodEvents - Producing ambitious and high-end one-off events
We are celebrating our 25th birthday by developing our most ambitious show to date, an exciting aerial version of Euripides’ Medea.
Alongside the show's development in early 2019 we’ll begin running a new and free community engagement programme which will involve initially working with 2 community choirs, offering them free vocal workshops and the chance to appear in the work as the Greek chorus. We’ll test and fine-tune this as we develop it in to a larger community outreach programme which will extend across the country alongside a national tour of Medea in 2020.
The project will also support a free educational programme of workshops and performance sharings for school students.
The project is key to our professional development as we develop more creative approaches to engagement and outreach, in this, our 25th year.
Will Bridges running a free drama workshop for students in London, 2018
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT PROGRAMME: The contribution of singing to wellbeing is widely reported with groups like The Choir With No Name giving hope to people affected by homelessness, and we want to empower disadvantaged communities in similar ways by engaging them in theatre and involving them in the development of our work.
Initially we’ll work with our local choir Vocal Explosion (Brighton) and this will extend to working with Cornerstone Arts Centre’s choir in Didcot.
Both choirs will benefit from participating in free vocal workshops centred around Medea which will develop understanding of ancient Greek drama and enhance performance skills.
Our work will greatly benefit from the input of a choir, who will inform the show in a radical and exciting way.
The project will have a very positive impact on participants, contributing to self-confidence, wellbeing and learning.
This phase will allow us to work practically on a new community focused project, evaluate with test choirs and work on development in to a longer term legacy of work.
As the show develops we’ll engage with community choirs and groups nationally, targeting groups in disadvantaged areas who don’t have easy access to theatre and community projects.
Mark Katz running a drama workshop at the Bradfield Festival, 2015
EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMME: Due to drama and Classics curriculum cuts, demand for external educational support is high and our work is particularly relevant to state school students in disadvantaged areas.
With support from our partners at Caterham School and Cornerstone (Didcot) the project at this stage will engage with AS and A Level students in and around these areas that do not have ready access to external learning.
Students will participate in free tailor-made workshops that examine major themes in Medea to develop practical understanding of Greek theatre and enhance educational skill set.
The project will resonate with young people who identify with its exploration of current themes such as the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements and interdisciplinary style of interpretation.
The project will positively impact on students and their personal development, confidence and learning.
The programme will develop alongside the show, in to a national delivery of workshops.
ALLOCATION OF FUNDS: With your support we can develop and deliver the first stage of this ambitious participatory programme, ensuring that the Classics remain accessible for those who would not normally have the opportunity to engage in such a fundamental part of our heritage. Your money, however much you can donate, will make a big difference to the first stage of what will become a much larger outreach programme, because it will go toward actually delivering the workshops, evaluating from them and developing the project.
Please contribute to our project because it is an exciting exploration of participatory involvement in a classic piece of theatre that benefits not only the community and educational groups taking part, but also audiences and the company, and the benefits of the free workshops are invaluable.