Penny for your thoughts: cash to support North Edinburgh Theatre production

Posted on 10/06/2014 by



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North Edinburgh Arts has been awarded £11,794.00 from the People’s Health Trust towards the North Edinburgh Theatre project’s 1d Tenement Opera, which will be performed in January 2015.

NEA’s Theatre Group will be hosting an information-sharing, discussion and fundraising session this Friday evening to support the exciting  initiative.

The 1d Tenement Opera is a story based on the lives of people who have
lived in a tenement in Edinburgh over two centuries. The tenement
eventually becomes part of Edinburgh Corporation’s Slum Clearance
Programme: some of the tenements were sold for just 1d (a penny), and in 1959 one of the last tenements collapsed and a little boy was killed.

Local people told stories of being in the bath and the end of the room falling
away, others spoke of desperately trying to save their babies and children as the floor boards started to slope away from under them. This was known as the Penny Tenement collapse.

The 1d Tenement Opera is devised with the local people of North
Edinburgh, some of whose families had been living in the city centre
before the Slum Clearance Programme.

North Edinburgh Theatre project is delighted to be working with the
following artists for this project: designers Ali Maclaurin and Alice Wilson,
musical director Lynda Peachey, dancer and choreographer Monica de
Ioanni, and dramaturg Lynne Clark. Stephanie Knight is the project

The North Edinburgh Theatre project was developed in 2011 after
research into the requirements of local people. The main finding of this
research was that local people wanted to make theatre again, after a
history of using theatre and other art forms to create work which
highlights their community and its needs and aspirations. In November
2011 North Edinburgh Theatre project developed Yes We CanCan – a
Cabaret of Resistance which was the cementing of the project.

Since then, North Edinburgh Theatre project has participated in a
number of performances including Theatre Uncut in 2012 & 2013 and the
project regularly offers Sharing-of-Work and Work-in-Progress events.

The opportunity to develop 1d Tenement Opera through the support of
the People’s Health Trust is an exciting and important development for
North Edinburgh. It supports the participants’ aspirations and hard work
for well-being and full creative lives, making strong contributions to their
own communities as well as participating in the North Edinburgh Theatre

The funding includes additional resources to develop the Theatre Skills:
Life Skills course that is currently running in parallel with workshops and
preparations for the performances.

‘Kate Wimpress, Director at North Edinburgh Arts, said: “The enthusiasm and commitment shown by the participants of the North Edinburgh Theatre group has been overwhelming for the staff team here at NEA and it was fantastic news when the project won the support of HealthShow, part of the People’s Health Trust.

“We are sure the 1d Tenement Opera will bring out a renewed sense of pride in the participants and their community and look forward to being able to
share this with everyone during the performances in January 2015.”


The North Edinburgh Theatre project invites you to the short Sharing-of-Work, discussion and fundraiser this Friday (13 June) at 7pm. There will be tea and cakes for sale, with funds going towards the 1d Tenement Opera production.

The Health Lottery is operated for and on behalf of 51 Community
Interest Companies across England, Scotland and Wales, all holding
society lottery licenses issued by the Gambling Commission.

People’s Health Trust is an independent charity addressing health
inequalities across Great Britain. It works closely with each Community
Interest Company distributing grants.