Changing Stories

Our creative prison programme for 2018/19.


Changing Stories is a participatory arts project based in four NW prisons and builds upon the work that we have been doing in HMP Styal and HMP Thorn Cross over the past decade or more.   The project runs up to April 2019, when we will be sharing our work at a showcase event in Manchester.

The writer Deirdre Heddon says that “The telling of stories about oneself is part of the construction of an identity for that self”, and in prison, where many more visible indicators of identity are removed, stories become the most valuable currency. 

Changing Stories sees us working with men and women in four different secure settings, equipping participants with the skills to write, create theatre, and perform music that tell the stories that shape who they are. Each Changing Stories residency  builds towards an intensive, week long residency that concludes with a performance of the participants work. The workshops develop participants’ theatre improvisation and devising skills, creative writing skills, acting skills, they learn to play instruments, compose original music, write lyrics and perform live together as an ensemble.

Changing Stories is a practical articulation of TiPP’s mission to provide opportunities for some of the country’s most disadvantaged groups to benefit from high quality participatory arts.  The project is designed to equip participants with the language of the creative arts so that they can legitimately speak about the life experiences that define who they are.  The creative residency process will be uniquely documented by the artist, Paul Gent whose approach effectively anonymises the participants whilst capturing the dynamics of the workshop space and performance.  His work will be presented to a public audience at the showcase event in 2019, providing the public with a unique insight into our working practices. 

Changing Stories incorporates TiPP’s talent development programme and will provide unparalleled opportunities for emerging artists to gain practical arts facilitation experience working alongside TiPP’s experienced team of artists.  If you are interested in getting involved, have a look at the information on the Current Vacancies page, or drop us a line using the contact form.

Devising a performance with men in HMP Perth

Devising a performance with men in HMP Perth

[TiPP] have been brilliant this week and have worked with some difficult men who would not normally mix together. Key people watched their performance today and were very impressed with the performance itself and also what the men said afterwards regarding reducing violence.
— Custodial Manager, HMP Buckley Hall