Haringey Unchained Creative Festival
Following on from the previous year’s success integrating the European Literature Festival (ELF) within the greater culture of HF6C, we decided to host our very own Haringey Unchained Creative Festival, in collaboration with WeMove dance enrichment. This gave us another opportunity to open up the enrichment to the entire Haringey Sixth Form College community, with students being invited to attend the workshops and various elements of the festival.
The Flemish Literature Fund, who had participated in the ELF the previous year, generously offered to send a Flemish writer to London to participate in this event. We were thrilled to welcome Maud Vanhauwaert to our school and to our city. She and Nick Hayes were our artists in residence for the day, delivering workshops and performing as guest stars in our magazine launch show.
Maud Vanhauwaert’s Workshop:
Maud Vanhauwaert is a writer and text-on-stage performer. In 2011 her first poetry album was published by Querido (Amsterdam), called ‘Ik ben mogelijk’ (‘I am possible’). It was awarded the Vrouw Debuut Prijs (Price for female débuts). In 2014, ‘Wij zijn evenwijdig’ (‘We are parallels’) was published, a book you can read as a poetry album, as a meandering story, or as a compilation of sad jokes. It was awarded the ‘Herman de Coninck Public Prize’ and by the ‘Hughues C. Pernath Prize’.
“I would like to thank you for the invitation to come to London. I really spent a wonderful time there. Immediately, I was impressed by the vibe in the school and by your enthusiasm, which had a direct effect on the engagement of the students during the workshop.Maud Vanhauwaert
I was amazed by the performances of the students during the show and the way they all supported each other (by generously applauding).
The following day, I strolled around the city. I visited the Tate Modern and the National Library and I walked from my hotel towards the Thames (it took me three hours, painful feet, but an interesting insight in some less touristic parts of London)
In short: it was a very beautiful experience.”
Nick Hayes’ Workshop
Nick Hayes, published graphic novelist (The Rime of the Modern Mariner, Wood Guthrie and the Dust Bowl Ballads and Cormorance), ran an informal workshop in which he worked directly with each individual student from the Haringey Unchained editorial team on a piece of their own writing.
The group then came together to have a discussion about the life of an artist. Nick then went on to give a short talk about his community in London to our audience at the end of the festival.
“I just wanted to follow up from the talk on Thursday, and say what a pleasure it was to meet you all. You guys are seriously talented; after the event, I was blown away by positivity for the future. Whether all of you do go on to be writers, or publishers, or artists, or whatever, that’s up to you, and how much you want it. But there will be so many things along the path that you can’t imagine right now. It’s just good enough to plough on with your hopes, and see what comes your way. An artistic perspective on the world often gets you into more interesting situations than you would get otherwise.”Nick Hayes, in a message direct to the students
We also organised a drama workshop led by Amy Allen, an actor and practitioner from Finsbury Park’s Park Theatre and a translation workshop with Anna Blasiak with students from our ESOL programme.
I had great time; I think the workshop went quite well. And I think what you do is absolutely fantastic! Also you have some amazing students at Haringey 6th Form College – so congrats to you and big big THANK YOUs.Anna Blasiak
“I was so impressed! I would love to work with you in the future and thank you so much for putting the day together and enabling us to come in and work with you.”Amy Allen, Actor
Magazine Launch Show
The events of the day were celebrated after the workshops were completed in our yearly magazine launch show. WeMove dance enrichment supported the launch by choreographing and performing inspiring and innovative dance routines to a selection of written pieces from within the magazine.
We were also honoured to have an incredible performance by members of Glitch Dance Company, founded by Nathan Ready Mafwa.
Q & A’s from Industry Professionals
We finished the day with a range of professionals from the creative industries, including: dance, publishing, theatre, illustration, poetry and music production. They watched the show and to chat afterwards with students about their careers, including how they came to be in their current positions within the cultural and creative industries.
Students circulated the room in groups of six, having an opportunity to speak with all professionals in the room for six – ten minutes. The buzz around the room was absolutely infectious, and we were so pleased to see so many young people asking such confident, thought provoking and professional questions.
“It was a pleasure; thank you for having me. I really enjoyed the festival and speaking to the students. I was so impressed with all the hard work and creative talent in the room. It was an inspiring day.”Nicki Davis Senior Commissioning Editor, Frances Lincoln Ltd
“It was my pleasure. I felt very inspired by their commitment to each piece, particularly those young boys who really gave their whole selves to the pieces; they all worked very hard. It’s given me good food for thought. I would love for them all to visit us and really understand the possibilities of what their futures can hold when it comes to careers in the arts – it is very possible for them to have a good career. “Melli Marie, Creative Director at Park Theatre, Finsbury Park
It was an inspiring day for Haringey Unchained and WeMove dance enrichments, and also for the students and staff at our college, marking the end of an exciting year in creative art at Haringey Sixth Form College.