If we can really call it that... the weather is as changeable as I've ever known it to be and honestly the tension between flash floods, monsoon like showers and blazing sunshine has been a little unsettling. And as if taking cue from the climate, freelance life has also proved subject to change too!
I have spent the last year really digging into ideas of Re-enchantment, Magic and Ritual, developing a depth of folk practice that I am intensely proud of for The Deepenings Project. This project has also allowed me to collaborate with some brilliant artists and with members of the local community on Mersea Island. The enhanced reality trail is still up and running, with additions to be made seasonally. I aim to keep returning to the site in the coming years to ingrain more storytelling, folklore and creative propositions in this truly special landscape. Huge thanks to Essex County Council's Arts and Cultural Fund for supporting this.
The Unfamiliars project has had the joy of designing and publishing some beautiful zines for Magical Women and Artist Elinor Rowlands. And a lovely volume of poems for Mary-Ann & Mates wonderful poetry night Emotional Madness. I've played some beautiful gigs with my beloved Mezzotint, as part of Leechbook and as one half of EthelFled. I hope to sing with you in one of these guises again very soon.
I've also had a magical time delivering theatre workshops over at The New Wolsey in Ipswich! There is nothing like youth theatre to really keep you on your toes, and working with the young D/deaf, disabled and neurodivergent folk there has been an enormous privelege. It has really ignited a new passion for sharing the power of performance, and also strengthened and underpinned the prominence of activism and advocacy in my larger practice as a proudly Neurodivergent Artist and leader.
And now I have an amazing new adventure to share with you all!
In late July I started in my new role as Engagement Officer at the brand new Sudbury Arts Centre. Set in the stunning medieval church of St Peter's we will be delivering a fantastic programme of entertainment and community centred events right in the heart of this beautiful town. I am so excited to get started on delivering quality, accessible outreach and loads of fun workshops and heritage events...and I hope to welcome as many of you as possible into the lovely space I'll be working in for the next two years at least.
I hope you all get the chance to sit in view of a spectacular late summer sunset, cradling a comforting cuppa, taking some deep calming breaths and some time to dream. To dream of the wonderful things that are on their way as the year slides toward autumn and we can all look to these little moments of rest again.
Keep dancing, singing, noticing and creating.
Keep putting one foot gently in front of the other.
Photo Credit: Alli Burke, Sudbury Arts Centre.