09 Oct 2017

Doorstep Writes

Doorstep Arts was begun by three theatre educators, and is based in Torbay, South Devon. We all had years of experience working as participatory artists, teachers, youth workers, and professional directors. We all had families growing up in Torbay, and we also all had guilt that our own practice wasn’t impacting on our home spaces. We knew that it was really difficult to get things going in Torbay. That generational deprivation, low socio-economic status and a history of territoriality made it really difficult for people to make a difference, that it was hard here for people to work together. We thought that by focusing our energies, here and now – on this place where our feet were planted, we might be able to see if it could be possible to change the world. Maybe just by starting with your little corner of it. In this sense, Doorstep Arts is both a grand experiment and a tiny social project. It has international significance and a focused, grassroots local impact.

Essentially, we’re doing work this for our own children.

We’re hoping that other people’s children will benefit.

We recognise that it’s a really scary and hard time to work in the arts, or in community settings, or to attempt any kind of social activism in the UK. We’re doing it anyway.

We’re really not sure if it will work.

We have some evidence to suggest it already is.

But as we enter year 3 of this experiment, we’re increasingly finding that we need a space to reflect and imagine. A space to write about the practice, and to explore what works and what doesn’t. A space to tell our story, away from social media, website text and press releases.

A bigger space, where any kind of writing can count. So welcome to the blog.

You might find that you hear different voices here. Our three directors will write sometimes. We’ll worry and ponder and contemplate and rant and reflect and reinvent in these pages. Our hope is that you will hear from our associate producers, who are young people, from the participants in our projects, from the children and young people and families we work with. This writing won’t be polished or publishable. It will be raw, and sometimes messy. Sometimes our grammar will be wrong, and the spelling. Sometimes we’ll just post pictures. Sometimes poems. Sometimes we might not say anything important. Sometimes we might just write for ourselves. Thanks for joining us and reading our words.

Post written by: Erin Walcon