School launches new public arts programme

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A NEW public arts programme has been launched by Pocklington School Foundation.

A number of events will be held at the Tom Stoppard Theatre as part of the Centre Stage programme for all the Pocklington community to enjoy.

The next Centre Stage event will be folk band Blackbeard’s Tea Party who play at the theatre on Thursday, 2 February. They will be followed in May by actor Robert Powell who brings A Celebration Of Dickens to the venue.

The project aims to build links with the wider local community and also inspire pupils to succeed through exposure to famous and expert guests.

Alan Heaven, the theatre’s artistic director, said: “The events are not specifically aimed at the school community, they are open to those connected and those not connected to the school, absolutely everyone is welcome.”

Mr Heaven said the project had been planned for many years and would not clash with existing venues such as Pocklington Arts Centre.

He said: “Providing something like Centre Stage has been a long term aim of the Tom Stoppard Theatre – since the building went up 10 years ago.

“We want to encourage people to come here, enjoy Centre Stage events and see well-known and successful figures. We will not be competing with the arts centre and other venues, instead we aim to complement what Pocklington and the area already has to offer and enhance the entertainment available.”

The theatre currently has a busy schedule with productions, concerts and plays by pupils and groups connected to both Lyndhurst and Pocklington Schools so the number of Centre Stage events will be kept small to minimise disruption.