/ Sector News

Big Telly: ‘Creative Shops’ returns… (to an empty shop near you)

’13 town centres across 6 borough council areas in Northern Ireland. 192 performances and 357 workshops. Engaged 122 creative personnel, 8701 participants and an additional audience of 18,512. This is Creative Shops.’

Now YOU can contact Big Telly about getting a Creative Shop in your town!

What is the Creative Shops programme?
Creative Shops 2 is a three year programme of creative residencies that happen in empty shops in towns or villages in Northern Ireland. The aim is to engage communities in creative activity and practice and increase access to the arts. It also aims to breathe life into vacant shops and energise high streets – bring a bit of colour, life and craic to the place!

How it works.
Big Telly finds a shop with the help of a local council or BID team for example. We employ an artistic director to take over the shop for 8 weeks, or for shorter periods – 4 weeks or two weeks. During that time, the artist meets local people, groups, passers-by, local traders, school children. They develop creative projects specifically for that community. They may bring in other artists to make things happen. We can’t tell you what they would be – that emerges from the process of the residency. But we can say in previous Creative Shops, there has been dance, visual art, poetry, theatre, immersive games & storytelling. We have had whole towns help us rehearse productions. It’s been engaging, surprising, great fun, sometimes weird but mostly wonderful.

Who is Creative Shops aimed at?
‘Literally, everybody.
Yes, the project works with groups – but the whole aim of Creative Shops is bring creativity to the broadest range of people. That’s why we want it on high streets. So we can reach people from all walks of life, all ages and all backgrounds and involve traders, shops and businesses.’

For full information, click here: Creative Shops 2 Promo Info