The Bath Festival, 19-28 May: Young Writers Lab, Family Arts Day, Dare to Write Library and More

Joanna NisselDare To Write, Education, Event, News, WritingLeave a Comment

photo courtsey of Julian Foxon

Bath Festivals is one of our fantastic partner organisations dedicated to promoting sustainable creative writing programmes in educational environments. Working with their Creative Learning department, Paper Nations runs and supports creative writing workshops at schools and festivals in the local area. One of these festivals is The Bath Festival which runs from 19th to 28th May 2017.

Building on the reputation of the Bath International Music Festival and the Bath Literature Festival, the all new Bath Festival offers an accessible and vibrant programme that embraces the wider performing arts.  Leading thinkers, writers and musicians will perform alongside the most gifted new talent emerging on the global stage in venues across Bath. The festival also provides a platform for a year round extensive learning & participation programme which Bath Festivals runs for over 6,000 young people, many with few opportunities to engage with the arts. Several events are specifically aimed at encouraging creative writing for young people of all ages: whether it’s being involved in a creative experiment at a shed, writing your own book at our popular Dare to Write Library Installation, or watching a spoken word performance developed during one of our workshops in schools.  There is something for everyone at The Bath Festival.

Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st May
Young Writers Lab Experimental Writing Shed
Alfred St

Playing on the idea of a writer’s shed as a place of creation in the stories of great writers from Roald Dahl to Philip Pullman, the young writers have created their own immersive shed. In a place where work is collaborative, new discoveries about storytelling, poetry and writing are made. Come join the Bath Festivals Young Writers Lab at their shed and try out writing experiments of your own.

Bath Festivals Young Writers Lab is a group of young people aged 12-18 who meet monthly to work with writer Alice Maddicott to explore the possibilities of creative writing and create work for performance, exhibition and publication. If you would like more information about the lab contact:

Sunday 28th May
Family Arts Day, Haysfield School and Rhyme and Reason Performances

We have three fantastic events happening on the 28th of May across Bath. The first, a large-scale, multi-faceted Family Arts Day programme combining music and writing. The second and third are performances of work by young people in the South West created as part of Paper Nations work in schools.  

Family Arts Day
Parade Gardens– 11am-3pm
Entrance to Parade Gardens: £1.50 adults / £0.80 concessions. FREE to Discovery Card Holders.

The Family Arts Day is a wonderful opportunity for families to explore music, art and creative writing in the relaxed and informal environment of Parade Gardens located in the heart of the city. Building on the successful Family Music Days held over the last two years, this year the Family Arts Day embraces multiple art forms which parallel the development of The Bath Festival.

There will be three activity stations  at the site, each with its own small marquee. There will also be live music on the bandstand throughout the day and a musical note treasure hunt for young people. Those who complete the treasure hunt will be entered to win tickets to the Bath Children’s Literature Festival in the Autumn.

Parade Gardens is a popular place for families in Bath and visitors are encouraged to stay for the day, bring a picnic and take part in the improvised performance on the bandstand at the end of the afternoon.

About the activities:

Marquee 1: Exploring Instruments with musician Sarah Moody

Ever wondered what it would be like to play a cello or violin? Sarah Moody will be bringing along a whole range of instruments to try. Have a go at a new instrument and create some exciting sounds, then join Sarah to create a new piece of improvised music and perform it on the bandstand. Be part of the Family Arts Day scratch orchestra and create a World Premiere!

Sarah lives in Bristol and has worked for over 18 years as a musician, music director and composer with theatre companies such as Kneehigh, Wildworks and Travelling Light and has written music for BBC Radio dramas. Alongside her performance work as a cellist, Sarah has co-founded Visible Thinking, a company that explores innovative ways to engage communities through story, music and performance.

Marquee 2: Dare to Write Library with Book Kernel and writer Alice Maddicott

The Dare to Write Library is an installation of creative writing and bookmaking drop-in workshops. Children, young people and their families pick from a selection of dares or extracts to inspire their own story, transforming that tale into booklets. As the library grows, young storymakers can swap their own booklets for the tales of others, and even create their own writing dares for future storymakers taking up the Dare to Write Library challenge!

Writer Alice Maddicott will also be onsite, running short creative explorations around the gardens to further facilitate new ideas and inspiration. 

The book-loving minds at digital publishing start up Book Kernel have developed and produced the Dare to Write Library for us. The first Dare to Write Library happened in February at the Eden Project in Cornwall. Images from that event can be found on the Paper Nations Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Alice Maddicott is a writer and artist who has been working on creative education projects for 15 years. She has a special interest in writing,location and imaginary worlds. She has published everything from poetry to scripts for CBeebies and even toured Somerset with a miniature museum in the boot of her car! Alice runs the Young Writers Lab for Bath Festivals.

Marquee 3: Experiment with clay with artist Claire Loder

Construct, model, draw, print and more – what can you make and do with raw clay? Get your hands dirty and explore the possibilities of this wonderfully versatile material in combination with all sorts of other stuff!

Claire is a Bath-based artist, educator and lecturer working with early years, primary and degree students.  Her own practice focuses on heads and faces, she works predominantly with clay, making objects and installations. Drawing underpins everything she does. Alongside her creative practice Claire is busy establishing a gardening festival ‘Blooming Whiteway’, which has creativity and community at its core.

Musical Treasure Hunt

Musical notes are hidden on a trail around Parade Gardens – children have to follow the clues in order to find the notes. They then use the notes they have gathered to play a tune on a keyboard. If they can guess the tune correctly, they’ll enter into a prize draw to win tickets to the Bath Children’s Literature Festival this Autumn.

Haysfield Paper Nations Poets
Old Bond Street- 12.30pm
Free Event

Students from Haysfield School in Bath will be performing their own writing developed during a spoken word workshop at the school.  Students worked with Rebecca Tantony and Malaika Kegode to create pieces about their hopes and aspirations for the future. The programme runs for approximately 30 minutes and will be located on the stage near the Gap Store.

Young Writers Showcase: Rhyme and Reason with Paper Nations
Southgate Centre- 13.15pm
Free Event

Join Paper Nations and Spoken Word collective Rhyme and Reason for an innovative showcase and celebration of creative writing by young people in the South West.

There are many more events happening across the festival period for families and young people. For more information about these or any other event in the Festival programme, please go to the Bath Festivals website here


Author: Joanna Nissel Tags: Dare To Write, Education, Event, News, Writing

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