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ReWrite Creative Futures Now Summer School

05/07/2022 - 09/08/2022
Shauna Kelly

Between 5 July and 9 August 2022, CFA at UCD piloted an exciting six-week summer school programme for talent development.

Building on the success of the RTÉ Creative Futures event in November 2021, this six-week course provided arts training and mentorship for ten 18-25 year olds with family experience of Direct Provision.

ReWrite Creative Futures Now Summer School

The summer school was facilitated by ReWrite, led by creative directors Melatu Uchenna Okorie and Fióna Bolger.

Students received skills training and workshops at RTÉ, Glencree Peace and Reconciliation Centre, MoLI and the National Concert Hall, consolidating existing CFA partnerships and creating new ones. The initiative was led by Dr Nicolas Pillai with support from Dr Peter Moran, with additional funding from UCD EDI fund. The course ended with a student performance on 9th August followed by presentations from Irish Ambassador to Nigeria Síle Maguire and singer Tolü Makay.
Dr Nicolas Pillai, UCD academic lead for CFA, said:

“I wanted to give these young people access to spaces they imagined closed off to them. Whether film-making at Glencree, in-studio recording at RTÉ or playing with the Gamelan instruments at NCH, it’s been wonderful to see how this experience has focused and energized them.”

Zbyszek Zalinski, Diversity and Inclusion Lead, RTÉ said:

“Bringing people together and finding space and time for creativity is such a precious and important endeavour. Just to be able to step away, step outside of our normal day-to-day lives and engage with the world in a different way. In addition, I believe that the participants learned a number of important creativity and life-related skills. They all employed them when working on their end-of-term projects, which were testament to their dedication and a sign of things to come. I can’t wait to see what they do next.

Melatu Uchenna Okorie, creative director ReWrite added:

“I think the learning from the six weeks programme was surprising for everyone. I suppose there’s something great about getting the affirmation to try things out. The participants did not just learn from each other, they also added to the way they thought and carried out their creative processes. Some came in as visual artists but left writing poems to accompany their work. Some were singers, but during the programme they tried spoken word and other theatrical devices for performance. Some collaborated with their peers to write plays and performed them.

In the six weeks, they changed from young people for whom art was an occasional hobby to artists beginning a creative practice.”

ReWrite Creative Futures Now Summer School