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More than 150 young people benefit from summer arts masterclasses

17th August 2017

Impact Arts’ Cashback for Communities funded programme –  entitled Cashback to the Future – this summer engaged over 150  young people in Ayrshire, Edinburgh and Glasgow in in-depth creative workshops led by accomplished artists who offered masterclasses in visual arts, music, performance and digital work.

Aimed at 14-19 year olds, these workshops offered truly free, safe and creative spaces for participants to be inventive and imaginative, with first-rate guidance on hand from skilled creative staff and volunteers. They have been running Tuesday – Friday each week since the beginning of July.

Being funded by Cashback for Communities, the programme engaged those who may not ordinarily have had the chance to take part in such activities. Referrals came from a wide range of valued partners and support agencies, including projects for unaccompanied asylum seekers, local community centres, social care charities and the NHS’s child and adolescent mental health support teams.

The programme ended with a series of stunning showcase events  – read further to find out more about these fantastic events.  To get a more comprehensive look at what was accomplished, have a look at  the dedicated Cashback to the Future blog, which documents a truly unforgettable summer for the young people and artists involved.


Edinburgh Showcase, National Museum of Scotland

What happens when you take gifted young people from across Edinburgh and ask them to respond creatively to the fascinating contents of the mesmerising National Museum of Scotland?

The Edinburgh Cashback team’s showcase – entitled Fusion – launched a creative takeover of the cavernous museum, including energetic interpretative dance routines, collaborative live music performances, light-hearted short films and intricate visual art exhibitions.

The Museum is a place fizzing with inspiration, with a captivating discovery around every corner – fittingly, the  show saw the audience taken on unique guided tours of the collections – both funny and enlightening, and all delivered and designed by the young participants whose workshops had been taken place there for the last four weeks.



Glasgow Showcase, Glue Factory, North Glasgow

Big Bertha is a fish. A big fish. Loved by the locals who live around north Glasgow’s canals, a feverish fish-hunt is triggered by her abrupt disappearance. Where could she have gone? And who knows more than they’re letting on?

Glasgow’s Cashback team took us on an absorbing multimedia tour of the Glue Factory arts space in the Spiers Locks area in the north of the city. The team did an amazing job of using the space to its full potential, guiding the audience inside and outside, upstairs and down, in a highly original show that included short film, brilliantly imaginative large-scale sculpture, rousing live musical performances and spellbinding interpretive dance pieces – all enhanced by beautifully atmospheric lighting and staging.


Ayrshire Showcase, Scottish Maritime Museum, Irvine

Irvine’s Scottish Maritime Museum was a suitably grand venue for Cashback’s Ayrshire’s final showcase. Surrounded by gigantic arcing machinery and colossal historic ships, the young people treated the audience to an exhibition of visual, musical and film work that delved into identity and what makes up a personality.

The audience were first welcomed by thoughtful and introspective visual work, where the young people had used a mixture of media on portraits that incorporated things that were important to them – be it song lyrics, books, computer games or inspiring quotations. This was followed by an energetic musical showcase in the main museum space that showed the young people’s technical achievements, as well as illustrating the confidence in their ability they had gained with Cashback.

The show ended with a pop-up film screening of short films created as part of the programme – these had comedic elements, drawing huge laughs from the audience, while other areas were more thoughtful and touched on issues such as loneliness and teenagers’ mental health.


A three year programme

Cashback to the Future will offer after-care services to young people most in need, and the programme is also funded to run in summers 2018 and 2019. As well as Cashback for Communities, invaluable support for this year’s programme came from National Museums Scotland, Creative Scotland, Scottish Canals and Elderpark Housing Association.

For enquiries about after-care, please contact Rob Gallagher on 0141 575 3001 or email rgallagher@impactarts.co.uk.

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