Kneehigh Theatre is delighted to announce that their New Generation Programme has been granted £803,236, courtesy of the Coastal Communities Fund, to help stimulate cultural activity in the place they proudly call home, St Austell Bay.
“We are delighted to be granted this opportunity to strengthen the ties with our local community and to inspire a new generation of leaders and workers in the culture and tourism sectors, here, in Cornwall.” Professor Alan Livingston, Chair of the Kneehigh Board
Since 2012, the Coastal Communities Fund has invested £174 million into 295 projects UK-wide. Its aim is to help coastal communities flourish and strengthen their appeal as places to live, work and visit, as they play a vital role in the economy, history and culture of the UK. The Fund is supported by the St Austell Bay Economics Forum, promoting economic growth in the area.
Kneehigh have built a reputation for creating vigorous and popular theatre for audiences throughout the UK and beyond, but their home base has always been St Austell Bay. In 1980, a village school teacher began running theatre workshops, which seeded a Company. That teacher was Mike Shepherd and that Company became Kneehigh. Kneehigh’s rehearsal base is a complex of barns on the cliffs of Gorran Haven and it is here that every project’s journey begins. Celebrated as one of Britain's most exciting touring theatre companies, Kneehigh create theatre that is local and universal, intimate and epic, drawing inspiration from the extraordinary surroundings of St Austell Bay.
Kneehigh’s New Generation Programme will develop a ‘centre of excellence’ and provide cultural practitioners and tourism leaders with skills and networks which will enable them to continue the company’s tradition of world-class storytelling. In doing so they will create further projects that will generate employment for themselves and other practitioners. Over time, this project will become self-sustaining and help safeguard the future benefits associated with world-class culture in this rural coastal area.
Kneehigh are currently presenting Fup: A Modern Fable as part of their 4th Asylum season at The Lost Gardens of Heligan in St Austell Bay, before it embarks on a UK-wide tour.