An arts centre in Bracknell- which has received record numbers of visitors this year- is going global with the help of its ties in Europe, Africa and the Far East.
South Hill Park Arts centre based in Ringmead has provided the borough with live entertainment and a space for honing their creative skills since its establishment in 1973.
And occasionally referred to as Bracknell’s Jewel in the Crown, the creative company has hosted thousands of popular theatre productions, as well as providing educational facilities for around 2,000 aspiring performers each year.
The centre’s 2018/19 entertainment programme included well attended performances of Disney’s High School Musical and Shakespeare’s Macbeth which took place in its own Wilde Theatre.
Behind the scenes the company has also formed relationships with both national and international partners in the hope of expanding its influence and bringing various creative communities together.
Head of Learning and Participation at South Hill Park, Mark Hooper said: “We firmly believe the arts have the ability to bring communities together and cultivate cohesion.
“We are now in a position to be able to transverse borders, and in doing so can bring together different cultures and nationalities to achieve something special and inspirational.”
Its partners include London-based Icarus Theatre Collective which the team are working with to provide nine students with the opportunity to travel to France and Italy as part of a cultural discovery programme.
Mr Hooper said: “The lucky participants will meet with European counterparts to respond artistically to questions set, share ideas, create theatre and develop new international relationships.
South Hill Park will host the UK leg of the trip in one month and we are looking forward to meeting all of the young people participating in this once in a lifetime experience.”
The team have also developed a relationship with Rubies International College, a school based in Lagos, Nigeria from which South Hill Park welcomed a group of six teenage students to take part in a performance of High School Musical in April.
As well as these relationships, the creative group’s associate companies Hit The Mark Theatre and Blackeyed Theatre took part in tours across China during June.
Mark Hooper said: “Working on an international stage, we are now garnering a reputation globally, with partners and arts establishments across the globe recognising the quality and rich educational and artistic facilities and support provided by South Hill Park.
“These co-operative activities also add richness and diversity to our local community as cultures, languages and artists come together to create and share unique work.”
For more information about South Hill Park or to view their upcoming events log on to www.southhillpark.org.uk.