BLINK's 2018 TOP 10
2018 has seen many changes in BLINK, we’ve grabbed life by the handle bars and we believe it’s paid off…
10. SEND SCHOOL SHOWS
This year we have written, directed and designed 4 school shows in our regular schools; Jack Tizard and Brookfield House . Shows have engaged over 200 students with SEND from early years to sixth form.
Summer term saw the creation of: The Alien Rehoming Extravaganza and Octa-decca-puss on the loose!
Winter term we’ve been busy with: Santa This is Your Life and The Grinch.
9. DRAG SYNDROME
Coming in at number 9 is our collaborations with Culture Device on their Drag Syndrome and Radical Beauty projects.
These have enabled Francis’s drag act Francesca to flourish and find new levels of expression and self esteem. The Drag Syndrome troupe have performed over 30 shows this year across London and beyond; a highlight was being part of Alternative Miss World at Shakespeare’s Globe for an audience of 1,500. They also starred in a mini documentary for ITV.
Watch this space for more shows and fun coming to 2019.
In the Summer Francis teamed up with award winning artist Roland Carline to create 'BOSSY' for the Royal Academy Schools Show 2018 as part of the RA 250th birthday celebrations.
The performance was incredible; raw, poignant and side split-tingly hilarious. It featured dynamic films the duo created, punctuated with live interactive dance.
7. EXPANDING TEAM
We were awarded a grant from Hammersmith United Charities to train two new learning disabled facilitators. As a result in Winter term we were delighted to welcome Maisa Mendes and Sabir Abdul to the BLINK facilitator team.
We have also welcomed Mandy Moir as a long term volunteer this year who is providing invaluable admin support in finance and book-keeping as well as a good dose of moral support at our shows and events…we promise we won’t make you dance on stage Mandy!
6: PULL UP TOUR
Co-Director Delson created Project PULL UP: Where gritty reality collides with mystic euphoria. He directed BLINK performers Vicki, Rachel and Francis in a track-by-track animation of his album. The full show debuted at Goldsmith’s University and was later shown at Crystal Palace Festival and ROAR fest Oxford. Delson also did a DJ set a Bristol’s Mayfest.
5. BABY LOVE
In July our Co-Director Kat gave birth to our first BLINK baby; Elijah. He’s already wearing the uniform and has performed on stage with us as well as being an avid member of the audience on countless occasions over the months. We have missed Kat but he’s totally worth it….
4. IT’S MY MOVE TOUR
We enjoyed our third school’s tour of It's My Move in collaboration with Face Front Inclusive Theatre this time taking the production to theatres as well as SEND schools and colleges across London. A highlight of the tour was a quote from a student who watched the show: ‘Now i know how to use my voice to make my choice to do my plan, Yes I can!’. This is why we do what we do, it makes all the hard work worth it and we hope many young people now have the confidence to advocate for themselves.
3: 5TH BIRTHDAY
We were blown away by how many people came to celebrate our 5th birthday with us. So many people who have grafted, cheer-leaded, laughed and cried with us along our journey so far. It was such a special night and important time for us to reflect on our hard work, amazing BLINK family and crazy journey so far.
We had a buzzing open mic too with performances from 2 decks, Sylvia Entwistle, Tanya Muchanyuka, Francesca ;) and Ben Myers.
2. DARK ROOM
BLINK were nominated for The Darkroom residency at Battersea Arts Centre produced by China Plate and were 1 of 3 lucky artists to be selected. We worked with writer Caro Horton and were given space, time and money to experiment, rejuvenate and enliven our creative practice. We had THE BEST time, and will continue to reap the benefits of the experience for many years to come.
We applied for our first over 15K grant from Arts Council England and were successful first time! This will be life-changing for us and we will create a new portfolio work coming this March as well as lots of exciting company developments. Watch this space for announcements!