Arts Project

Hello friend,

We had a meeting this week with 2 managers. It was very positive. They were talking in terms of getting the set and costumes put together asap. Up to now, I was working on the premise that we would have to obtain funding for this type of work; I feel like some of the pressure has been lifted.

The member of staff who runs the choir also turned up to hear some of the songs. I don’t think it’s necessarily his thing, but he was “impressed”, nonetheless. The next step is for me to attend choir practice and show them the songs and their parts. I’ve already written some 4 part harmonies for them

In the end, we only had enough time to go through the first 5 numbers, so the next 2 weren’t learnt; a bit of a catch -up next week.

The other 3 singers also turned up for the first time. Unfortunately, one had to go the dentist part way through and one turned up late because he was having a sentence plan meeting. The guy playing the main character has a follow up with the dentist next week as well, so will miss another rehearsal; the difficulties of attempting something like this in prison.

Later on, at the Events’ Management Group meeting (more of that in a future blog), two members turned up from Mental Health. As the story revolves around mental illness I felt that it would be a good thing to get their endorsement and advice. Initially they were completely in the dark about the project was about but are now on board.

Just when the day couldn’t get much better: later on, at the band night, I got the costs for hiring the string orchestra and found out that the Irene Taylor Trust (music in prisons charity) were talking to the Bromley Trust (amongst other things, they fund prison-based projects) about this arts project and possible funding.

An unusually interesting and positive day. Most days in here tend to be a little mundane and repetitive; not much different to out there? That’s why I try to make every day count, even in a small way.

Be happy, be safe.
Graham Coutts, 28th January 2017

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