Senses Touth Trust

Engage Touring Production  March 2012: Report


Many thanks to New Grove Trust for your grant to support Engage Youth circus recent touring production. With your support the Youth Circus was able to fund their full length family circus show and tour it to three village communities in the Forest of Dean. The venues they performed in were: English Bicknor Village Hall, Flaxley Village Hall and Bream Church.

The performances were on Saturday 17th March, Saturday 24th March and Friday 30th March. Over the three shows they performed to 210 people; of these at least 50% were new audiences. In addition to this they were able to run a workshop that involved 20 children who had not tried circus skills before.


A total of 25 children and young people aged between 8-19 years were involved in the show either as performers or backstage. It has given them all a really great experience.

It supported one young person to assist with and learn about make up and costume and a further two older young people (under 25's) to learn about devising a show and all the back stage tasks involved with a tour. It was able to pay these three a small amount for the work they did. A further four young people aged 14-16 were able to assist with the 'get in' and 'get out' of each show. This was a mammoth task as it involved a lot of props and equipment being loaded and unloaded and set up in each venue. They each focussed on one area such as costume, props or lighting to learn about and take responsibility for.


8 parents, 2 non-parent volunteers and one ex-Engage student who is now at Circus school in Bristol, have been involved in supporting this production by assisting on the door or with tea and cakes in the interval, with rehearsals or with transport. We have liaised with three village venues: members of the committees from these venues have been involved in promoting the show and workshops in their villages, and in Bream, by involving another youth group. We hope to be able to maintain these relationships and take other shows or workshops into these venues in the future.

The group also worked with a local dance project to develop skills to incorporate into the show.


The Engage youth circus group, like all of the activities run by Artspace, is fully inclusive, and this project included 3 young people with disabilities and 6 who are home educated.

Artspace supports young people to gain Arts Awards; a nationally recognised accreditation which is particularly useful for those who are less academic. Four of the young members of Engage who took part in this project will be able to use their experience towards their Arts Award. A number of parents have reported on how their child has gained in confidence as well as skills through this production.


We were able to hire a van to carry all the equipment, and to pay fuel expenses to volunteer drivers who were some of the parents.


I am attaching a few photos of the final rehearsal in Bream Church and a group shot.


If there is anything else you require please don't hesitate to get in touch.


Sally Gibson


Cinderford Artspace

Artistic Director