Community Play Project
Arc Community Players
Running from 2009-2013, our Barking & Dagenham Community Players group was an inclusive, local and intergenerational performance company of people from many backgrounds and with wide-ranging experience. We are currently seeking new funding to enable the group to reform.
We are very sad to announce that, for the time-being, the Barking & Dagenham Community Players will draw to a close after their farewell production - The Banjo of Doom.
With final performances taking place at Arc's Studios at The Malthouse on Sunday 10 and Monday 11 February at 7pm, please do join us in bidding a fond farewell to our wonderful group of people drawn from the local community, who have, for the past four years, created and performed original work with unswerving commitment,creativity and passion.
We will post here as and when we are able to bring news for the group or its latest incarnation. In the meantime, a very big thank you from all at Arc for your generous support.
In partnership with the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham, supported Unity Theatre Trust and supporting the Living The Dream Trust.
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It's a win in the NatWest CommunityForce 2011 Awards!
We are thrilled that our Community Portfolio is a winner in the nationwide NatWest CommunityForce Awards! Thanks to fantastic support from our friends, Arc received the most public votes across categories in the North East London Area, and our £6,000 Award will enable us to continue providing opportunities for local people to get involved with high-quality, open access theatre projects. For more information, visit: http://communityforce.natwest.com/project/568
As part of our Award, Barking & Dagenham Community Players has a public donation page on LocalGiving.com, which means you can directly help provide local people with high-quality, open-access theatre opportunities that boost confidence, develop team work, provide transferable skills and create a sense of community identity. To make a donation, no matter how small, please visit Arc's Community Portfolio on LocalGiving
Community Play Production history
2011: My Loose Head
Written by Clifford Oliver and directed by Carole Pluckrose, Barking & Dagenham Community Players took to the road again with a touching modern tale of overcoming setbacks and rising against the odds...
Bella Deller loves a fella - and not just any fella...
It's 1985 and Bella is madly in love with local rugby star Jason Leonard, destined to become the youngest player ever capped for his country. However, she has two minor problems; firstly she has never met Jason and can only worship him from afar and secondly, everyone tells her he's too good for her. In fact, all her life Bella has been told she's not good enough - she can't sing, she's not pretty, she's not clever and so on. So can Bella overcome her disadvantages and capture her man? Well, probably not ... but following her story will enable us to examine our aspirations and the self-limiting beliefs that can so often hold us back...
See programme with full Cast List (PDF, 120k)
Download My Loose Head flyer (PDF, 135k)
My Loose Head costumes by Theresa Snooks and production images by Theresa and Katie Snooks
2010: The Marvel of Muddy End
Following the success of Trading Stories - the first community play brought to you by the Barking & Dagenham Community Players, in summer 2010 the group created a brand new site-specific promenade production The Marvel of Muddy End. Written by Clifford Oliver and directed by Carole Pluckrose, a week of unique performances took place at The Malthouse Studios in Barking.
See The Barking & Dagenham News article (29 May 2010, page 2)
Watch The Marvel of Muddy End trailer on YouTube
2009: Trading Stories
Barking & Dagenham Community Players first came together in Spring 2009 as part of the Borough's brand new Community Cohesion project. After a series of creative devising workshops, an original new play was written especially for the cast by Arc's Creative Director, Clifford Oliver. Following weeks of rehearsal with Associate Director Andy Rogers, Trading Stories was ready for performance at six venues around the Borough from 23 to 29 August, including Lift on Abbey Green (as part of the Lift/Molten Festival), Eastbury Manor House, Kingsley Hall, The Malthouse Studios, Mayesbrook and Old Dagenham Parks.
The scene is a village not unlike Dagenham at the turn of the last century.
The market is coming to life and a new, mysterious toy-seller arrives to set up his stall...
With comical characters, an intriguing storyline and a fascinating insight into Victorian working life, Trading Stories featured original music, costume and the talents of a committed team of local people aged 16 to 55.
Watch the Trading Stories trailer on YouTube
Trading Stories costumes by Theresa Snooks
"Because I have had a ball, learned new skills, met fantastic people and most of all done something that I am passionate about, and actually had the confidence to perform in a play. Thank you Arc for this opportunity - I will be attending the next project!"
"I've met amazing people/strangers who have become friends. I'm not sure we would've met if not through the project, even though we all live so close to one another."
"The project sessions became like a sort of therapy to me - a time where I could just be myself and stop thinking about work and everyday stresses. Especially at the beginning - the process of humiliation in front of a group of strangers was strangely liberating!!!"
"Its been educational, fun and rewarding. I've loved playing my character and the challenges that has brought. I feel it has stretched me and given me the chance to build and learn new skills."
"Good fun, made good friends, left my comfort zone, boosted confidence, helped me get to know locals from community outside of work/church circles, made me more ready to try new scary things!"
Trading Stories performers