Young people challenging ideas and igniting change in the arts

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What will the arts be like in 25 years’ time? Can one person make a difference? Is imagination more important than knowledge? Join TV presenter Billie JD Porter to debate these questions and more at UPrising!
UPrising is a one-day festival event, created by ART31’s Youth Board, considering the biggest challenges young people are currently facing, including mental health and wellbeing, employment and education. Come together with young people, creative professionals and artists to challenge ideas and ignite change in the arts, through panel discussions, Q&As and workshops.

Billie JD Porter

9.30am – Registration and booking for workshops and breakout sessions.

10.00am – Welcome. Gulbenkian Youth Dance Company and ART31.

10.30am – 2042: Fast Forward – How do we create the future?
Darren Henley, Chief Executive Arts Council England
Jasmin Vardimon, Artistic Director, Jasmin Vardimon Company
Michael Hill OBE, Cabinet Member for Community and Regulatory Services
Brandon Relph, CEO and Founder, goCreative Group
Daniel McCormick, Young Arts Advocate, Time To Shine

L-R: Darren Henley, Jasmin Vardimon, Brandon Relph, Michael Hill, Daniel McCormick

11.30am – Break and performance of All At Sea by Acrojou

12.00pm – Rebels With A Cause – Can one person make a difference?
Jake Davis, Head of Hacking, SPYSCAPE
Hamish Pirie, Associate Director, Royal Court Theatre
Envy, DJ, music artist and performer
Emma Westbrook, Boss(y) Girls Project

L-R: Jake Davis, Emma Westbrook, Hamish Pirie, Envy

1.00pm – Launch of the ART31 Commitment to Children and Young People and ART31 Documentary Screening

1.20pm – Lunch

1.45pm – Meet the professionals at drop-in roundtable conversations around 6 topics:
Music Industry
Arts Jobs

Find out who you can meet!

1.45pm – Workshops

Choose from:
Dance with New Adventures & Re:Bourne – Join two New Adventures & Re:Bourne Dance Artists to experience the unique, storytelling style of Matthew Bourne. One of the driving forces behind creating Re:Bourne in 2008 was to inspire young people, regardless of background or experience, with a passion for movement. Since then, the company has gone on to engage, support and provide unforgettable experiences for thousands of young people aged 4-21. Open to all ages and abilities, our workshop will be playful, creative, physical, challenging and inspiring, beginning with games and a warm up, and moving on to creative exploration. Resonating with the themes of UPrising, our workshop will explore the abundance of benefits from dance and art that extend beyond the obvious physical and health benefits, to the development of self-confidence, teamwork, collaborative learning, listening, patience, perseverance and leadership. Through focusing on the themes of Matthew Bourne’s various productions, such as Nutcracker! and Swan Lake, we will explore how we can use the body to convey, portray and express feeling and emotion.

MIND YOUR MOUTH with Envy – Acclaimed writer and performer Envy hosts an interactive workshop focusing on how expression through performance poetry/rap can impact positively on your mental well being. Discover how! Explore your own emotions, and release them in a safe environment, through the medium of spoken word or rap. All abilities welcome

Introduction to Animation with Nina Heywood, UCA – Using iPads, magazines, scissors and blu-tack, create a wild and wacky animated film in the time it takes to eat your lunch!

Exploring Youth Voice and Participation with Pie Factory Music – Following on from their workshop in partnership with Turner Contemporary for arts organisations in Kent exploring what meaningful youth participation looks like, Pie Factory Music will be delivering an interactive workshop, developing ideas and strategies for how arts organisations can work better with the young people they reach.

2.45pm – Breakout sessions. Choose from:

Is imagination more important than knowledge?
Are arts good for our health?
How can you create a career in the arts?

3.45pm – Break

4.05pm – Performance by 4×4 Bhangra.

4.20pm – What Now? The outcomes of the day will be put into the creation of the UPrising Manifesto.

5.20pm – Dinner break. Roundtable conversations will be running again, as in the lunch break, on a drop-in basis. Live music, programmed by Pie Factory Music and ART31 will take place in the café.

7.00pm – ART31 Awards Ceremony and evening performances. Young people will be presented with awards of £500 recognising their achievements in or contributions to the arts in Kent. A range of performances will take place during the evening, including groups of young people from Gulbenkian Youth Theatre, Kent Refugee Action Network, Kent Music’s Orchestra ONE and a SCREEN31 film.

9.00pm –Acrojou’s Vessel, the sequel to All At Sea, performed earlier in the day.


Throughout the day, there will be live music performances, a rolling programme of short films in the cinema plus artwork installations, including tipis created by Young Voices Brilliant Makers and an exhibition from young people working with Maidstone and Mid Kent Mind.

The UPrising Marketplace will feature stands from a range of organisations, promoting creative opportunities for young people and how you can get involved with more activities in Kent.

Interested in holding a stall at our marketplace, to promote your organisation and your work with young people? Email us on hello@art31.co.uk!

Join the Facebook event for UPrising!

Thanks to Arts Council England, Kent County Council and Gulbenkian.