Isle of Man News - POSTED Thu 16-01-2014

Island of Culture 2014 to bring creative theatre company to Island’s schools

by Stephen Ritch

Island of Culture 2014 to bring creative theatre company to Island’s schools

In the spirit of Island of Culture 2014’s call to ‘Be Inspired. Be Involved’ the Isle of Man Arts Council is bringing dance and theatre company Qdos Creates to the Island to deliver a series of workshops in schools designed to help young people discover their self worth and motivate them to make informed decisions about their lives.

‘Believe in Yourself’, a potent interactive mix of music, dance and drama, will be delivered to school years five, six and seven by the Barnsley-based charity’s Jason Boyle and Louise Edwards who explained: ‘Qdos Creates began delivering workshops in 1995 and we have strong links with the Isle of Man since the days when Castle Rushen High School’s head teacher Andrew Cole was teaching in our region.

‘The Believe in Yourself' programme is bespoke, shaped largely by its young adult audience and driven by issues that affect them. We work closely with a range of professional service providers and agencies to ensure the content of our workshops is current, relevant and deals in real-life situations.’

The Believe in Yourself sessions last around 90 minutes during which ideas are explored about how young people’s life chances can be affected by issues such as low self-esteem, bullying and peer pressure.

The workshops provide practice for real life, lead young people to become more self-confident and aware of the power of their own ability or, as Louise explained: ‘The sessions help develop an “I know I can” attitude.’

Qdos Creates patron is Penny Creighton MBE who first saw the power of the workshops in the charity’s home town of Barnsley. ‘The energy created was off the Richter scale and the look on the children’s faces as you saw them respond to what they were seeing was truly amazing. These are vibrant, very visual high-octane performances that touch all the senses and which children remember long afterwards delivered by qualified professionals of whom I’m extremely proud.’

Qdos Creates is being brought to the Island by the Isle of Man Arts Council in association with the Department of Education and Children as part of the programme for Island of Culture 2014. Event director Michael Lees said: ‘The invaluable work being done by Qdos in schools complements, in a highly original and educational way, much of what Island of Culture is seeking to achieve. Not only do the workshops present music, dance and drama in an exciting and engaging new context, these sessions also help develop life skills, so have the power to leave a lasting legacy with our young people.’

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