Join Hackney Carnival Collective!

Two Hackney-based theatre companies are joining forces for the second year running this summer to host a free carnival-themed drama project for young adults with learning disabilities or autism.

Hackney Shed and Access All Areas are each hosting workshops across the summer, with participants then having a chance to perform at the borough’s carnival in September.

The Hackney Carnival Collective, which is aimed at Hackney-based 16 to 25-year-olds, proved a huge hit last year.

This year’s participants will work on street performance, dance and costumes in collaboration with professional artists, including learning disabled and autistic artists from Access All Areas’ performance company.

Hackney Shed’s artistic director Vicki Hambley said: “We are very excited to work with Access All Areas again on the Carnival Collective this summer.

“The Hackney Carnival is a great tradition and we are looking forward to building up our own tradition of collaborating together.”

Hambley said the project allows young people to get together “in a safe space to be creative and build friendships”, adding: “The Hackney Carnival is the perfect way to celebrate the culmination of the work they have created over the summer.”

Hackney Shed hosted the first of the project’s two workshops on 25-27 July with great success, and Access All Areas will host the second workshop on 28-31 August at Chats Palace in Homerton.

Places are still available on this workshop, which will lead to participants having the opportunity to perform at the Hackney Carnival on Sunday 9 September.

Helen Bryer, Director of Take Part and Train at Access All Areas said: “We’re delighted to be collaborating with Hackney Shed for the second year running.

“As two theatre companies that are embedded in the local community, Hackney Carnival gives us the opportunity to showcase our work to the borough’s wider audiences, and to set a positive example both of and for young people with learning disabilities and autism on a wider stage.  As a company making urban, disruptive performance we are proud to be a part of this huge celebration of Hackney.

“The Carnival Collective is one of our community theatre projects, and it is a joy to be able to meet and collaborate with new participants who may not have made their own performance work before.  We’ll be using street performance, physical theatre and costume to bring out the unique voices and personalities of these young performers.  We can’t wait to show the people of Hackney what they can do.”

To book a place for Access All Areas’ workshop, please contact alex@accessallareastheatre.org or call 0207 613 6445

The performance can be seen at Hackney Carnival on Sunday 9 September.

For more information about Access All Areas’ wider work with learning disabled and autistic artists, please visit www.accessallareastheatre.org