Artburst is an award winning social enterprise providing creative educational workshops that improve the lives of young people and their families.

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Artburst’s creative educational workshops integrate drama, art, music and movement, and our programmes are aimed at improving oracy and literacy skills, developing confidence and encouraging a passion for children’s literature. Artburst works extensively with schools, Children’s Centres, Local Authorities, museums and galleries to deliver a range of projects for children of all ages and abilities including those with specific needs. Artburst is a member of The Communication Trust in recognition of the impact workshops have on children with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN).

Artburst projects make a real difference to children’s confidence, social and team working skills. Since founded in 2006 Artburst has worked with over 15,000 children across London.
Artburst is based in Angel, North London. Take a look through our website to find out more about the work we do or contact us on 07435 788 190 or email info@artburst.co.uk for more information.

You can also follow us on twitter or facebook for the latest news about workshops and events!


What’s On

  • LIVE STREAM Ready Steady Off We Go

    April 6, 2020, from 10:00 am until 10:30 am

    Come and join us for 30 minutes of LIVE STREAM fun on Facebook and Instagram.
    Singing, dancing, shaking...and signing! We are Makaton approved!

  • LIVE STREAM Make and Paint

    April 10, 2020, from 10:00 am until 10:30 am

    Come and join us for 30 minutes of LIVE STREAM fun on Facebook and Instagram.
    Making, drawing, mixing colours...and signing! We are Makaton approved!


Projects

Speak Out Year 2013 – Make a Play

Workshop Name: Speak Out Make a Play Description: Speak Out Make a Play is a programme of one day taster workshops in the Easter half term followed by 1 week-long integrative arts workshops for Year 6 students in the Summer and then the Autumn school holidays During these workshops students will devise, design and create a play in 5 days with support from a team of Artburst facilitators and a trainee Speech and Language Therapist. At the end of the week students perform a play to family and friends. Plays are based on well-known children’s story books such as James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl. The plays are filmed and then screened at the popular Hackney Picturehouse. Objective: The project is to support the transition to secondary school for children with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN). Age Range: Year 6 students (10 – 11 yr olds) Duration: Taster days – 1 day 1 week  (5 days) Watch the promo film: See the timetable below. Email Version Artburst Make a Play Leaflet-2

Mapping Hackney Stories

Mapping Hackney Stories is an exciting literacy transition scheme that brings literacy learning to life for Year 6 pupils. Artburst worked with Victoria Park Books and a Steering Group including individuals from Hackney Learning Trust to raise funding, develop and deliver a pilot for the project in Spring/Summer 2012.

Based on an illustrated map of the writers and stories of Hackney, the project takes local places, people and narratives as a starting point for pupils to explore literacy through their relationship to the local area.

A pilot for the project was completed in July 2012, involving Year 6 classes from Kingsmead, Lauriston and Grasmere Primary Schools in Hackney. The project included a 14-lesson scheme of creative literacy work that was led by teachers in the classroom and visits to the Geffrye Museum, Hackney Archive and local Libraries for custom-built sessions.

During the project, Artburst also ran 3 workshops over 6 days at each of the 3 schools. These action-packed sessions focused on working with 10 children from each class with the lowest literacy levels or levels of engagement in literacy learning. Over 2 days they worked as a team to devise their own stories, inspired by authors from Hackney’s history, create shadow puppets, and record their stories read out loud, with music to accompany them. One the last day each shadow pupet play was filmed. These 3 film were then screened to all children involved in the project, teachers, parents and project partners, at a Celebration Event at Dalston’s CLR James Library in July 2012.

The films can be viewed here:

The Dog That Found It’s Way from Darren Michael on Vimeo.

The Crash from Darren Michael on Vimeo.

Runaway from Darren Michael on Vimeo.

The project received a fantastic response from both pupils and teachers, with the Artburst workshops really raising the enthusiasm for their literacy topic when the children involved returned to the classroom. They also felt a real sense of ownership over the films they created, and the pride they felt at the Celebration Event when the films were screened was clear to all involved!

To find out more about the project you can go to the Mapping Hackney Stories website.

Mapping Hackney Stories was supported by funding from The Ernest Cook Trust and The Equitable Charitable Trust.

V&A Museum of Childhood

Artburst has run three strands of the Family Explorers programme for the V&A Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green since March 2010. The aim of Family Explorers is to create fun, interactive educational experiences that encourage parents or kinship carers and children to learn together.

Wondertots

These sessions are for under 5s and their parents or carers. Wondertots sessions are 90 minute workshops that integrate art, music, movement and drama. The session includes story telling, parachute, dancing, singing, painting and craft making. These weekly workshops are based on the museum’s collections as well as visiting exhibitions. Morning sessions are targeted at bringing Bengali families into the museum and using it as a local resource and afternoon sessions are open access.

Wordburst

Wordburst sessions run daily during the school half term holidays and aim to ignite a passion for reading through family learning. The workshops are designed for 5 – 11 year olds who stay for the day with their parents or carers and learn a short performance, as well making an item of costume and set. At the end of the workshop they perform a short play to the general public in the museum’s gallery space.


Our Team

Interns & Volunteers

Artburst also work extensively with interns and volunteers, from young people looking for work experience placements, to grown ups wanting to develop their skills or change careers. We work closely with Inspire! and the Central School of Speech and Drama to arrange placements where candidates can gain experience ranging from arts administration to workshop delivery. To find out more about volunteering with Artburst see our Volunteers & Interns page.

Penny Embden & Amy Bicât – Directors

Penny and Amy met at the age of 4 and many years later in 2006 they formed the company Artburst. In the intervening years Amy trained and worked as an actor, designer, writer and Performing Arts teacher whilst Penny went to Art College, worked as a jewellery and costume designer and lead mural projects with young offenders in partnership with charity NACRO. Penny later studied Art Psychotherapy at Goldsmiths University and Amy completed a Certificate in the Therapeutic & Educational Application of the Arts at the Institute for Arts and Therapy in Education. In 2006 the two combined their skills and mutual passion for empowering young people through the creative and performing arts to form Artburst. From humble beginnings in a warehouse in Hackney Wick, the company has gone from strength to strength, recently relocating to a new home in Angel, north London.

Jane Bell – Project Manager

Part-time, Monday. Jane has over 25 years experience in the voluntary and community sector. She has developed numerous successful and innovative community arts and regeneration projects in Hackney supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, BBC Children in Need, Inspire, The Learning Trust, Hackney Voluntary Sector Grants, the Department of Business Innovation and Skills among others. Since joining Artburst in 2011 Jane has increased networking and new partnerships, particularly focussing on approaches to engage, and create impact for, disadvantaged families. Jane managed the Speak Out project, funded by Big Lottery Fund’s Reaching Communities programme and involving around 200 young people from Hackney and their families each year.

Her current role involves creating and sustaining community partnerships to develop projects according to community needs, applying for funding, creating monitoring processes and reporting on outcomes and impact for children and families on Artburst projects.


Workshops

Festivals

Artburst can deliver a range of festival activities from interactive storytelling and singalongs to drop in craft activities for families. We ensure our activities are accessible for all ages and abilities and can be designed to specifically suit your event. 
 
Artburst has run hugely popular events for the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican, London Transport Museum, Thames Festival and many more. 
Artburst has also run its own E3 Children’s festival for the past 3 years providing community events for up to 300 families.
 
Monster Mayhem 2019

Children’s Parties

Artburst has a variety of exciting activities for children’s parties:

Ready Steady Off We Go Party for 0 – 5 year olds

45 minutes Makaton approved workshop run by one facilitator featuring unique action songs as seen at the V&A Museum of Childhood and at the London Transport Museum. The workshop includes interactive storytelling, parachute play, singing and dancing.

Make & Paint Party for 1 – 5 year olds

Make & Paint  workshop is 45 minutes of interactive storytelling, making, painting and signing. Each child will make something to take home based around the chosen theme.

Artburst Minis Combo Party for 1 – 5 year olds 

60 minutes workshop combining interactive storytelling, singing, dancing and take home craft. Each child will make something to take home based around the chosen theme.

Artburst Play in a Day Party for 5 – 8 year olds

90 minutes workshop combining interactive storytelling, drama games and craft. There is an option for a short performance at the end of the workshop and each child will make something to take home.

Artburst Drop in Craft Party for 5 – 8 year olds

60 minutes of interactive storytelling and a variety of drop in and craft activities.  Each child will have the option to make something to take home.

Prices vary depending on location, theme and capacity. Contact us for more information.

After School

After school Art Club
Artburst Art Clubs are weekly one-hour sessions. Sessions are artist-led in drawing, painting, model making, textiles, sculpture, photography, print making. Children work in a relaxed setting and with various materials to explore individual and group creative projects. Projects can be themed or open-ended, and always support children in developing their creative ideas.

After school Drama Club
Artburst Drama Clubs are weekly one-hour sessions. Sessions are high energy, fun and inspiring. Sessions are led by professional actors who teach drama and performance, students are encouraged to free their imagination and express their creativity. The sessions include drama games, improvisation, movement and loads of fun!

After school Art & Drama Club
Usually running over a 10 week period these are led by 1 art facilitator and 1 drama facilitator. Projects end in a performance and children make, create, devise and design every aspect of their final show.

Aim:
After school clubs develop children’s confidence and team-working skills. Workshop activities are very much pupil-led and children are encouraged to express their ideas and opinions, creating a real sense of ownership over the whole process.

Age Range:
Key stage 1 and 2 (5 – 11 yr olds)

Duration:
One day a week for a term

Capacity:
10 – 20 children depending on after school option.

Cost:
Please contact us to find out more about fees and booking.

Support Artburst on Paypal

Artburst is not for profit organisation set up in 2006 and we’ve developed FUN creative education and we’ve won local and national awards! Our sessions develop confidence, creativity and communication skills for children & families. We deliver workshops for schools, Children’s Centres, community centres and Museums including the London Transport Museum. We’re Makaton approved – so you can have fun with signing, as well as singing, movement and art. 

To help in COVID 19 while we’re all at home, staying safe, we’re doing some online sessions to keep us happy and healthy by singing, dancing, creating and having fun while we learn!

We want to be able to provide these for families from all sorts of backgrounds and circumstances. 

If you have the resources to help pay for each session – and to enable us to continue these sessions for everyone, including those who are struggling financially – please pay what you can!