Dare I start this post with yet another cliché about just how fast this year has gone? Well, no, because I haven’t been here at Culturapedia for a whole year. But the last 6 months? They truly have flown by!
As new as Matt and I were, so was the project we had taken on. Plugged In started when we did, and when we think of those beginnings we will undoubtedly think of wooden spoons and too many trips to The Range (other craft shops are available). We were itching to get out there and meet community groups and find out what was already happening in Blackburn, Darwen and Pendle, so we popped up in shopping centres, markets and festivals with finger puppet theatres and wooden spoon puppets, still working out what the project was and where it would take us.
One of our first big events was Blackburn festival back in September, where our first community group SLYNCS managed to sum up the Plugged In Project in a ten minute, game show sketch. See it, Choose it, Fill it, is now our strap line, and comes in handy when introducing the project.
If you ask me, that gold jacket stole the show, and I hear Matt can be seen sporting something suspiciously similar on a Saturday night.
Of course, it hasn’t all been about Plugged In, one of my favourite things about Culturapedia, is just how many projects there are to get involved in, this is me at the ‘summer of somewhereto_’ shop in Lancaster, my mum now has that drawing of me framed and hung on the living room wall, she said it was more flattering and true to life than my graduation one!
Back in June, when I was told we needed to put together a season of shows for Autumn, it seemed impossible, but we did it! 581 audience members, 6 shows, 3 venues, and 1 pop up theatre later, Matt and I are exhausted but happy. It would be impossible to pick out a favourite moment, although I know Matt would say his was when I was attacked by a live owl at Darwen Library Theatre! I much preferred Plop the puppet (pictured right, from Blunderbus’s production of The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark). From elves, to shoe makers, goldfish bowls to cardboard boxes, we’ve worked with some amazing companies over the last couple of months, and some equally amazing community groups, and now that the project is all up and running I can’t wait to see how next season goes!
You can find out more about our community groups, and upcoming shows on the Plugged In website.
In six months, we’ve held countless workshops, met hundreds of wonderful local people, been lucky enough to see and host some amazing theatre pieces, visit Edinburgh, and of course try Rob’s infamous parsnip cake. Not to mention a little bit of fancy dress along the way…
If we can fit that much into 6 months, who knows how long my post will have to be at the end of 2015, I guess we will just have to wait and see, Merry Christmas everyone and a happy new year,