Emma Reading is a self employed musician and artist. A lot of her work is inspired by the songs and the stories that get sent to her that are looking for a visual representation from up and coming musicians and bands, to better established artists as well as beacons within the community.
Her work continues to grow with each project and challenge that comes her way. With the development, skills and experience she gains she strives to create pieces that are easily accessible and engages the viewer. This is done through work that tells stories from local writers, bands and musicians, creating a visual message through the animation as well as workshops delivered to share thoughts and skills to a wide range of ages and abilities within the community.
Born in Nigeria, Inua Ellams is a cross art form practitioner, a poet, playwright & performer, a graphic artist & designer. He is a Complete Works poet alumni, a playwright-in-resident at Soho Theatre, resident at the Southbank Centre’s Poetry Library, and a graphic designer at White Space Creative Agency. Across his work, Identity, Displacement & Destiny are reoccurring themes in which he also tries to mix the old with the new: traditional African storytelling with contemporary poetry / pencil with pixel / texture with vector images. His first two books of poetry are published by Flipped Eye, and several plays by Oberon.
Voice Direction and Additional Text Edits
Hannah Silva is a poet, playwright and performer known for her innovative explorations of form, voice and language in performance. Her work explores a wide range of subjects: from political rhetoric (Opposition) to paranormal science (Total Man), teenage sexual identity (Orchid) to long distance running (Marathon Tales). Her current performance, Schlock!, is a meditation on pain, the body and the self, consent, complicity and ownership, splicing the language of Fifty Shades of Grey with a novel by Kathy Acker. Schlock! premiered at the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival and is performed using British Sign Language, soundscapes and poetry.
Her debut poetry collection Forms of Protest (Penned in the Margins, 2013) has been widely praised and was Highly Commended in the Forward Prizes. She won the Tinniswood Award for Best Radio Drama Script with her verse play Marathon Tales (co-written with Colin Teevan for BBC Radio 3) and has been shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry for Total Man.
She has shown her work throughout the UK and internationally.
Music and Composition
Soesen Edan is a certified Sound Therapist with The British Academy of Sound Therapy. Based in the Midlands, Soesen has been working with music for over 15 years, performing, running gigs and festivals, DJing and running radio shows and traveling the globe in search of the best sonic remedies.
Having worked with artists and musicians all over the world, Soesen realised that the most special part of her work was how music and sound affected people. She now works with sound and music on many different levels; holistically, therapeutically and performatively, enabling people to access the full awesome power of sound.
Mark ‘Magoo’ Robertson has been a percussionist for over 20 years. Starting in the early nineties with community band, Birmingham Afro-Bloc, he got the drumming bug and started performing in the streets of Birmingham busking with Urban Vibes. He spent many years playing percussion along side some of Britain’s finest DJs and was a founder member of the Substance Hip Hop Orchestra. Throughout his music career, Mark has delivered an extensive range of workshops in many different contexts and settings, often with a focus on Afro-Brazilian percussion. He is a fully qualified and experienced JNC Youth, Community and Play worker with a B. Phil Ed Degree Community and Youth.
In 2002, Mark was awarded an Arts Council Grant to visit Brazil to further enhance his knowledge and skills. Since then he has returned to Brazil and travelled widely as part of his musical development. He toured for twelve years with the internationally acclaimed Overproof Sound System, and has played nationally with Orchestra Hurracan, Del Camino, The Alpha Mix Dub Band, The Alternative Dubstep Orchestra, Global Folk, The Sub Ensemble, Babatunde Live and 1Eye. He has been instrumental in founding various groups and bands. More recently, Mark has travelled to Africa exploring the culture and rhythms from Senegal, Guinea and The Gambia. He has been working closely with ACE Dance and Music who promote Afro-Caribbean Arts in communities and deliver professional performances around the world. Mark also DJs regularly in all the genres in which he performs.
The pianist and composer Steve Tromans has given in the region of 6,000 performances on a national and international level, at venues ranging in size from concert halls and festival stages through to the intimacy of club spaces. Working across the fields of contemporary music, jazz, folk, world, Tromans has composed over 100 works for a variety of different music ensembles and projects, with major commissions from Birmingham Symphony Hall Town Hall, Warwickshire Libraries, ZeroKlassikal!, and the arts organisations Jazzlines and Birmingham Jazz. He has released a total of 18 albums to date. Tromans has featured on BBC Radio Three’s Jazz on 3 programme, and received the Artists’ International Development Fund grant from the Arts Council England. In 2012 he was nominated for the Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award, and was made an Honorary Member of Birmingham Conservatoire of Music in 2006.
Sound Design and Post Production
Ed Lawes is a filmmaker, musician/composer and photographer from Birmingham, UK. Working primarily through his production company 1-4-4.com he produces film/video, sound design and music for clients both in the arts and commercial sectors. He has also released music under his own name on the label Planet Mu, and produces his own films and photography.
Anna Lawrence is a Birmingham-based writer, lecturing in Creative Writing at Birmingham City University. Her first novel, Ruby’s Spoon, was published by Chatto & Windus in 2010 and is set in a fictional Black Country town. She is particularly interested in exploring the interaction of the magical and the industrial, prayer and place, women’s medieval spirituality and the spaces that contained it.
Nick Turner is a qualified forest gardener, and works to design sustainable ecosystems involving earth and people in a fair way.
He helps organise regular Permaculture events around London, showing films and arranging talks and conferences with a particular focus on education and digital media.
Nick words part time for an environmental media charity, helping to raise awareness of issues around climate change, sustainability and global justice through film and online media.
Elisabeth Charis, a permaculturalist and Room 204 writer for Writing West Midlands, is a thinker, writer, producer and facilitator currently living in England. Her short story, So Far from Home, published by Nine Arches Press, 2014 was part of a project Elisabeth coordinated, for Writing West Midlands and her production company, OWL Productions, commissioning retellings of stories from Homer’s Odyssey for the anthology, A Midlands Odyssey. Otherwise, she mostly writes and reviews poetry alongside her ongoing novel. In 2013 she was shortlisted to be Birmingham Poet Laureate.
Elisabeth is interested in the transformative possibilities of creative writing and has recently undergone training to work with mental health service users and completed a level 3 qualification with The Orchard Foundation in Writing for Well Being. She often works with marginalised or vulnerable young people and adults and has a diploma in Neurolinguistic Programming.
Elisabeth also has a first class honours degree in English Language and Literature and is a qualified teacher (QTS and TESOL) with many years of experience teaching young people and adults and facilitating workshops in and out of a variety of educational contexts. She has lived in China, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand and, most recently, Syria where political unrest forced her to return to the UK.
Her influences include our often troubled connection to the Natural World; bodily experiences as a woman; international travel and years of itinerant life aboard her narrow boat, Fair Adventure.
Elisabeth is a member of WRB and Tindal Street Fiction Group.