Cardboard Citizens & 1625ip have partnered with local organisations to present “Remembering Zero” at The Wardrobe Theatre
Theatre company Cardboard Citizens is working with Bristol-based youth homelessness charity 1625 Independent People (1625ip) to run an exciting, life-changing project with young people aged 16 to 25-years-old who have experienced homelessness in the city
The group of young people have been working together on a three week residency to create a piece of forum theatre based on their own stories and experiences. The performance piece they have created, namedRemembering Zero, will be performed in the Wardrobe Theatre on Friday 10 March at 3pm to invited guests including local Councillors, MPs and other young people in Bristol.
Cardboard Citizens’ National Residency projects bring together groups of homeless or marginalised participants, social sector staff and locally based arts practitioners to explore their issues and barriers through Forum Theatre, creating pieces based on their experiences to be shared with wider audiences, to discuss the issues, raise awareness and identify solutions.
Forum Theatre is an interactive and powerful style of theatre that empowers the audience to voice their opinion and attempt to change the course of the characters’ lives. Each project aims to leave a legacy, linking arts practitioners with vulnerable groups to continue the work.
“At first, I didn’t want to do the residency; I thought it was going to be boring but they got my attention and interest on the first day and I decided to do it,” comments young person Andrew. “It was a very friendly and flexible environment. I love telling people about my experiences and opening their eyes to reality. I have lived in a lot of different environments, some of them nobody knows and probably never will. “
The Bristol Cardboard Citizens Residency follows 2016’s hugely successful inaugural Manchester residency with young people from St Vincent’s Foyer. You can find out more in this short documentary:
Speaking about Cardboard’s Citizens’ Bristol Residency, Programme Director Michael Chandler commented: “We’re pleased to be working with 1625ip and its young Members to explore the issues they’re facing and identifying ways to overcome them. We are using Forum Theatre as an innovative way to tackle the increasing homeless issue Bristol is facing today.
“This project has brought together a group of local theatre makers, who we hope will be taking forward the work after the final performance to ensure there is a real legacy and offer to those young people and others.
“This Residency follows our tour of Cathy – which was performed in Bristol – and staff and arts practitioner training we provided a few months ago. We hope this is just the beginning of our work in Bristol and the South-west, bringing the Forum Theatre model to a wider audience.”
This project is possible thanks to support from local Bristol partners Wyldwood Arts and Stepping Out Theatre, and funders Arts Council England, Big Lottery’s Reaching Communities Fund, the John Ellerman Foundation, the Rayne Foundation, Bristol City Council and The Gibbs Charitable Trust.
Featured image: young people taking part in forum theatre workshop, image © Camilla Adams