NTW TEAM has had to adapt so much the last couple of years because of Covid. It's so strange to try and reflect on something thats still going on and still continues to affect us all... its like we're looking for the power of hindsight to hit us like a lightening bolt so we can work and create with the right answers as if we've learned all we're going to learn from all this.
Go Tell The Bees was originally planned to be a huge in person production, which became a film instead. The people of Pembrokeshire showed incredible support and enthusiasm throughout the project and for our screening events. The involvement of local artists, schools and social enterprises like Get the Boys a Lift showed us that having something to work on, albeit different, helped give so much purpose at such a hard time for everyone. Appreciation for our environment and hearing the voices of young people amplified gave a sense of hope prevailing.
Delays in project completion because of restrictions, contributors and audiences actually getting Covid, meetings on zoom and the lack of being able to meet and speak organically, has changed the way in which ideas and stories are told and our ability to connect to those voices we need to hear. It's no use pretending that we're okay with the way things have gone down; there really is nothing like a community getting together in a room to express themselves and empower each other to learn and to create and to inspire change. What I love about TEAM is those individual stories of a workshop, a performance, a talk, a conversation, that has made a difference to someone's life and their attitude towards their role in the arts and beyond.
But, we want to look towards this year's work in Wrexham with positivity and excitement and open-mindedness. With generous support from The Paul Hamlyn Foundation, we want to work with every intention of physically meeting, hearing, and being lead by the people of Wrexham and what they want to say and how... And if it does end up being digitised, we want to find every way to make that possible and that access needs are at the forefront of the projects evolution over this next year.
Digital work undoubtedly highlights the further inequality our most vulnerable experience; internet access and technology, considering its now 2022 and every sector depends on it, is actually a huge privilege that is taken for granted by those in less rural areas. Whether internet bills can afford to be paid, or you don't have a home to access it at all, exclusion in this way makes for huge swathes of our communities to be ignored. The Director and Designer roles for our project on Homelessness/Home will help us and community partners to approach this issue as best we can and lobby those in a position to help. We want to hear from artists/activists/creatives who understand the huge challenge that this is, but want to engage in this critical conversation and help TEAM to engage effectively, helpfully and in a way which makes lasting connections in Wrexham.
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