Creativity for mind, body and soul

This month we're discussing the important role of creativity within education, and beyond. It's not just about getting a great career and scoring the top grades (although creativity can help with that too!) it's also about what it means to be human, and where 'home' is to you.

Creativity for mind, body and soul

Theatre is my home from home! Like my actual home I feel like I need to spend some time away from it or I want to shuffle the furniture around but some days I just want to huddle inside it and hide away from the world for the day. Today is one of those days.

I go to the theatre a lot. And when I say a lot, I mean at least once a month, if not more. I have had incredible moments in theatres, but sometimes it just becomes second nature to me to be in an audience, do what an audience member does. I can enjoy - even love - the show but it doesn't always hit me. It doesn't always make me think, 'this is why theatre is for me'. I do have those moments but I often forget that I have had them and I wonder whether pursuing this 'dream career' is what I really want.

Last night I had one of those moments. I was sat in the press night of Chichester Festival Theatre's Mack & Mabel. The overture began and hit me, I mean really hit me. As much as the musical is beautiful and the show is incredible (everyone should buy a ticket), I am not sure that was why I felt inspired. Listening to the music fill the theatre, seeing the audience waiting expectantly, the atmosphere so palpable, I almost wasn't ready for the show to start. It sounds silly but I felt quite emotional. I am (as my friends know) a highly emotional person but I promise this wasn't the reason. That moment was a realisation, I belong in theatre. Yes, I may not know where that is yet...on stage, back stage, in the education department? I just know that whatever it is, it has to be in theatre.

In the past two years (well my whole life, but let's just focus on the post education years) I have been very lucky. I have had some amazing opportunities. I have served celebrities at Galas, networked with incredible people in the arts & cultural sector, been to private viewings & press nights, been involved in inspiring projects for young people and more recently sat on a panel with Lenny Henry! I am pretty sure I have had my share fair share and more of life changing experiences and I feel ridiculously lucky and grateful for those moments. But no way am I finished with theatre yet!

I am not in this for fame and I am certainly not in this for money, I am in this because it's who I am, it's what I know and without sounding arrogant, it's what I am good at. People don't take the arts and cultural sectors seriously enough (that's a whole other blog) but for me it's a way of life.

Author

Elspeth Barron

Elspeth Barron Centre

Elspeth started in the Arts Industry as part of a Creative Apprenticeship scheme. She is Learning, Education & Participation Officer at Chichester Festival Theatre after working 3 & 1/2 years in various positions at Artswork. During her year she also became a trained Arts Award Adviser for Discover to Silver and started her own Silver award whilst also running an Arts Award project for young girls with low self-esteem.

She volunteered as a 16- 25 Ambassador and Youth Theatre Assistant for Chichester Festival Theatre for 2 years after spending 6 years in the Youth Theatre herself. She recently was asked to be part of a panel with Lenny Henry talking about routes into the industry. She has also recently become Trustee of Making Space, a local crafts organisation.

Elspeth has been involved in the arts from a young age performing in many school and semi-professional productions and founding a drama workshop group for primary school children. She was also given the opportunity to become a founding member of a small events company, MADD Productions. This is where she found her passion for community arts and decided to pursue a career in the arts sector.

Elspeth is currently using her spare time to write a play with her younger brother and has started her own weekly vlog, ‘To My Future Self’ on her YouTube channel ElspethRebecca.

(https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCllJZB7U5KbnBSHKsZIiWPA)

She loves good coffee, spending time with friends, playing her ukulele and watching lots of theatre!

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