Changing Stories

Our creative prison programme for 2018/19.



To celebrate the conclusion of our Changing Stories project we are holding a symposium at HMP Thorn Cross on Thursday 11th April, 2019.   If you would like to get an insight into the work we have been doing and an opportunity to meet some of the artists we have been working with, please join us for the afternoon. 

HMP Thorn Cross is one of the key locations where we have been delivering the project, so we are really pleased to be able to say that some of the men we have been working with will be joining us to talk about their experiences and share some of their work.

If you’d like to know more, click here for a link to the blog post about the event.

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.  

[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