The Barbican Box project was launched again at Melland this term. The project has been highly successful over the last few years and with the impact of the pandemic the project was in doubt for some time. With a collaborative effort however, from Melland High School, Home Theatre, Coney Theatre Company, Harlowe Playhouse and The Barbican, this amazing opportunity will go ahead this year.
The Barbican Box is a portable box filled with the ingredients for making and creating original theatre and visual art. Teachers are supported to develop their own teaching practice through training, access to new activities for the classroom and collaboration with an Artist Mentor – a professional artist working in the creative sector. This year, using the Box as their inspirational starting point, students alongside their teacher and Artist Mentor, will make and present a creative ‘gift’ that supports the wellbeing of the school.
With a combination of an interactive website, written clues and text/phone calls pupils must decipher riddles each week to open a part of the box to reveal its contents. We have already had an online interaction with our artist mentor Kayleigh Hawkins who ran an exciting, informative and engaging session with our students. Kayleigh is a theatre director and facilitator, who creates reinterpretations of classics, interactive site-responsive work and digital experiences. Her knowledge and skills are perfect for our learners and the resources we have available.
For the first time this year due to COVID restrictions, the students were able to access our multimedia studio and make use of the amazing technology we have available. We have had both the big screens and projectors running at the same time as well as making use of the lighting, sound and smoke machine to create a mysterious atmosphere.
This project will last for 6 weeks and will result in a final showcase of the student’s creative developments. Keep an eye out on the Melland Twitter account for updates of this fantastic project.