Since 2000 Clare Arts Office has been working to develop ongong and engaging projects with children and young people throughout County Clare. These have included projects such as the Artist in Schools Scheme which has reached over 6,000 children and young people, and the development of Clare Youth Theatre
This scheme was established in 2000 to enable schools to develop projects with professional artists for the benefit of the participating students. Since then over 300 residencies have taken place throughout the county with children participating in visual arts, music, dance, mime, drama, film and creative writing.
The Arts Office also works with national organisations such as Encountering the Arts in Ireland to develop professional development opportunities for artists and teachers through the Teacher~Artist Partnership Scheme delivered in Clare through the Clare Education Centre.
Clare Youth Theatre runs from September - April annually. It is a proud member of Youth Theatre Ireland.
It is open to all children in secondary school in Clare from all around the count who have an interest in acting, writing for theatre, set design etc. There are no auditions. There are currently 20 members. A junior group has also been established to cater for 10 - 12 year olds.
The ethos of the youth theatre is to allow the young people involved as much autonomy as possible in the choice of theatre they wish to perform or write.
New Word Order is a multidisciplinary arts project devised for Transition Year students and presented by Clare Arts Office in partnership with Clare based secondary schools. Utilising poetry, live performance and illustration the New Word Order poetry project aimed to empower the young people of Clare with the power of language to raise awareness for the issues in the world that concern them and the struggles facing young people today. Students were invited to respond to pertinent issues and themes including the environment, mental health awareness, sexuality, identity and the frustrations of inheriting the catastrophic problems left by the generations before them.
Facilitated by renowned poet Stephen Murray and dramatist Zara Starr Madden, the New Word Order project engaged with over two hundred TY students in Clare, supporting them to compose and perform their own poems at the 2020 Ennis Book Club Festival. Acclaimed illustrator Alan Dunne was commissioned to illustrate a selection of the poems which were distributed in poster format throughout Ennis during the Book Club Festival.
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