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Art Fun
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Art at the Heart CIC

Our mission: Realising dreams~supporting wellbeing~combating inequality through creative and cultural education.

Art at the Heart CIC is a multi-award-winning Solihull based non-profit arts organisation. Qualified artist educators (PGCE, TES FE Award for Outstanding Innovation in Teaching and Learning) offer creative and cultural workshops for young people in school and after-school via parent funded Art Clubs. Workshops are thematic, exploring world culture and current issues using the arts as a tool for thinking. They develop confidence, problem solving skills, resilience and support emotional wellbeing. Opportunities to exhibit are built into our Art Clubs. Our inspirational displays reflect our young artist's uniqueness. 

As artists and experienced teachers, EDI/senior managers, we understand schools' challenges from multiple perspectives. We seamlessly combine in depth arts curriculum knowledge and wellbeing support with action for social justice, conscious of impact to meet targets. We are an Arts Award Centre, Artsmark trained, offer CPD for teachers and consultancy support for curriculum development. In 2022, we were recognised in the Solihull Civic Honours awards for Making a Difference to Young People.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

We have introduced two new community festivals to The Core to ensure our whole community is celebrated and to bring different communities together to have artistic fun. Holi 23, Festival of Colour , was shortlisted for the Fantastic for Families Awards for national Best Family Arts Activity 2022.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

  • Brand new SummerCamp: 'Be an Artist for a Week' - be a different type of artist every day! For ages 8-12.

  • Contact us if you would like to see an after-school Art Club run by specialists at your school or venue. 

  • Schools Arts Leads:  sign up to get involved with Diwali: Festival of Light  (October/November) Lantern-making Competition.

  • Permanent artworks co-designed with school community

Arts & Crafts
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We deliver award-winning high impact creative learning workshops to empower youth on global issues and teach them self expression and improve their confidence and mental health and promote equality and tolerance in communities. The workshops are led by Salma Zulfiqar who has worked for the United Nations all over the world and brings with her unique knowledge and experience to share with youth. In 2023 she was bestowed with a British Empire Medal in King Charles III Birthday Honours List for her services to the Arts and Education.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

The Migration Blanket project has engaged youth from all over the world and has created climate change-makers in the West Midlands and around the World.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

  • Workshops are delivered based on a project commission. Please contact us for more details.

Drama Students
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Big Brum Theatre in Education

Big Brum uses theatre and drama to help young people to make meaning of their lives and the world around them. Big Brum is an Arts Council NPO and an award-winning charity pioneered in 1982 to educate young people through Theatre in Education (TiE) learning programmes. We deliver most of our work in learning settings located in areas of high economic and social deprivation, where children and young people are least engaged with creativity and culture.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

We are currently engaged in a project called 'Creating Schools of Recovery' working with all the children and teachers in selected primary schools across the West Midlands in order to bring about a cultural shift.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

As part of our commitments as an Arts Council NPO, we are committed to bringing 'Schools of Recovery' to all schools in North Solihull, intertwined with programmes of 'Communities of Recovery' and 'Artists for Recovery'


Birmingham Repertory Theatre

We're all about the live experience... You can find us performing live on our three stages here in Birmingham (The House, The Door and The Studio), in the West End, or touring globally. We might pop up on your doorstep in local streets, in schools and colleges, in shops, parks and city squares. 

The Rep's Creative Learning Programme delivers a huge partnership programme where schools, colleges and universities can have our highly experience Drama Practitioners support curriculums and advocate for theatre in schools. The Young Rep is The Rep’s celebrated youth theatre company for children and young people aged 7–18. Young Rep groups meet weekly at The Rep to create high quality performances working with professional theatre-makers. We provide our members with opportunities to develop their performance skills, learn how an exciting producing theatre works, and grow in confidence. Young Rep aims to nurture and inspire the next generation of theatre-makers through staging new work, devising original pieces of theatre and performing established texts. Young Rep is an inclusive environment that welcomes children and young people from all backgrounds. We have Satellite Young REPs across the city including Solihull Young REP which runs in the Core Theatre.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

We have recently been working towards our large youth theatre festival titled Order and Chaos - this is where all of our in-house youth theatre groups, school partners and community partners are performing stories linked to the themes of order and chaos. This huge festival takes place from the 8th-22nd of July.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Right now schools can book workshops, summer schools and enquire about our partnership programmes for the next academic year. We would love to speak to headteachers to chat about how our programmes can really develop the school curriculum and be an asset to the cultural capital that we can build for young people.

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Bonanza Creative

We are a creative, educational organisation, who deliver free carbon monoxide awareness sessions for Yr's 2, 3, 5 & 6, using drama, dance, music, art and games. The sessions are fully funded by Cadent and all of the Yr 2 & 3 pupils receive a free goodie bag and CO Alarm and all of the Yr's 5 & 6 receive a pen, keyring and booklet as part of the session. Sessions are carried out in the classroom by our trained Arts Facilitators and take half a day. To book, go to:

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Safety Seymour - Carbon Monoxide (CO) Awareness. This is a free half day session, run in the classroom and designed to increase awareness and safety around CO. We use drama, music, games and art to explore the subject area and all of the children receive free goodies as part of the day.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

We are always looking for Arts Facilitators up and down the country to deliver this fantastic programme

Youth Club Meeting
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Calico is a Birmingham-based arts and activism company. We are storytellers that listen, respond and rethink our world. We work closely with community groups, and particularly young people, to co-create artistic campaigns, encompassing theatre, dance and film, to fight against issues of gendered violence, and encourage others to use their own creativity for good.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Last year, we were commissioned by the Birmingham Commonwealth Games to create Look Sharp, a community campaign against spiking. We worked with 16 young Brummie creatives to co-create a campaign video calling on the Government to make spiking a separate criminal offence in the UK. As a result of this campaign, we were able to speak to BBC News, BBC Radio West Midlands and Birmingham Live all about how the issue of spiking affects our community. Our campaign contributed to the anti-spiking effort which resulted in a Westminster debate to consider amending the law to include spiking.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

We are currently looking for Community Councils - these are community focus groups who want to help us to create our current project: Curfew. Curfew is a multimedia campaign about street harassment, which poses the question 'what would you do if men had a curfew?'. We would like community groups to consult with us on this project, discussing their own experiences of public spaces at night and helping us to evaluate the material we create. The finished piece will be both a live performance for public space, and a virtual reality empathy-building training tool, exploring the issue of street harassment and envisioning a world where public spaces are safe for everyone. We want to hear from community groups of all backgrounds, and would love to expand our community to include as many diverse voices as possible.

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The Core Theatre

Contact: 0121 704 6962

The Core is a popular multi-purpose arts venue in the heart of Solihull town centre. It is home to a 336 seat raked theatre (fully equipped technically with stage flying system, sound and lighting), plus a smaller Studio which seats up to 130, perfect for small scale theatre shows, music events, workshops, and more. The Core also has its own gallery, art and exhibition space called The Courtyard Gallery, which is available for hire for creative activities and art exhibitions. 

The Core is also proud to be the host of Core Creatives, a fantastic creative hub open to people who live, work or study in the borough. It is a free programme which aims to help local creatives grow and develop their practice by supporting collaboration, experimentation and business growth. The Core also comprises of a library, across two floors, a heritage gallery, Encore café bar and Solihull Connect which provides face-to-face access to Solihull Council services.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Core Creatives, The Commonwealth Games Solihull Finale, Small is Beautiful, Short is Beautiful

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Core Creatives

Art Class
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Cris Wong Art Studio

We focus on art education and skill development. We offer a wide range of courses, workshops, and training programs that cater to diverse interests and needs. Classes provided include Acrylic painting, water colour painting, calligraphy, sketching, and mixed media.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Our studio has been open around three months, we have not engaged in any project yet. In June, we will join the event held in the Core

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Katie Holtom

I am a Midlands based Artist and Creative Producer, passionate about providing opportunity to emerging artists and supporting children and young people to access the arts and cultural sector.

As an artist, I facilitate workshops with schools and communities to co-create projects, specialising in physical theatre, dance and creative writing.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

In 2022, I worked as Creative Producer with the National Trust to pilot their first Green Man Climate Pub festival. The week long program of events included talks, climate comedy, folk singers and low carbon alcohol tasting and invited everyone from the local community to get involved.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

I am lucky to be working as Development Coordinator for Solihull CEP, and provide a mass of opportunities here.

I am also currently producing Earth Bounds new show 'For The Love of Stuff', which is touring from August 2023, including offering workshops with schools and community groups.

Music Sheets
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Music Monsters

Music Monsters is an award winning learn-through-play piano lesson programme created by Luke and Lauren Elliott, experts in children’s music education. We work with children in the community, to build a really solid foundation of musical skills, and engage families to bring music into their homes. We learn through FUN - games, missions and challenges! Children work in small groups, working together to create awesome ensembles, and making great friends as we do. Our students are at the heart of everything that we do, and we pride ourselves on being a fully inclusive music school. We nurture children, filling them with confidence in their abilities, supporting their mental well-being, and giving them the tools they need to become incredible musicians – but musicians that truly fall in love with the learning. Our students progress quickly, with opportunities to perform regularly and enter exams in they choose to.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Music Monsters is proud of have partnered with lots of local charities over the past few years. In 2022, we worked with Ordinary Magic and Touchwood, to deliver Jubilee-themed workshops for Solihull. We led children as a marching band through Touchwood, taught them how to create their own royal procession rhythms, and celebrated our Queen. This was followed by a full week of workshops and concerts, delivered in schools and community centres, creating magical musical memories for all of our students!

What opportunities have you got open right now?

We have an exciting programme of Summer Club classes, including themes such as CSI, Space Camp, and Matilda. From September, we have lots of new beginner classes opening across Solihull, suitable for children aged 4-11 years.

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Pickle Illustration

Lauren and Liv, also known as Pickle Illustration, are an illustration duo based in Birmingham. Creating characterful and colourful outcomes, they produce both public art as well as print and digital artworks. Ranging from painted grasshopper trails to projected window animations, maps to murals, their aim is to always spread joy through illustration and to push the boundaries of where and what illustration can be.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Solihull Council commissioned us to paint 5 utility boxes along the Stratford Road in Shirley.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Potential interning opportunities which would involve helping us on physical painting jobs

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Rachel Sambrooks

Contact: contact form via

I'm a freelance writer and performer who runs co-creating workshops and facilitates engagement with creative activity, mainly for wellbeing and to reduce social isolation. I like making connections with humour.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Stand By Your Nan was/is a show I developed with Arts Council funding, it has been a spoken word show, published a poetry collection, become a comedy show, toured comedy festivals, got a 4 star review and then developed into a podcast series. It's about my grandmother and others, celebrating matriarchs and sharing stories.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

I'm developing a new show 'Well Wisher' which will have a community version and a stage version. The community version will combine ways to wellbeing as audience interaction and tell funny anecdotes, the stage version will have more stand up comedy and storytelling in it for adults. I'm open to running wellbeing workshops creating poetry, sharing stories and educating about ways to wellbeing. I'm a mental health practitioner for i-act (positive wellbeing focus) and mental health first aider.

Anything else to share

I've a children's poetry book - The Strangest Sandwich in the World, which was longlisted for the CLiPPA award, I love taking this into schools and sharing with students, encouraging them to make their own poetry.

Art Class


We are a cross arts organisation who has these 3 aims : 

  • Celebrating South Asian Arts and Heritage

  • Breaking down barriers 

  • Amplifying unheard voices.  

We are based at the Midland Arts Centre in Birmingham but work across the region. 

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

We have toured a photographic exhibition called ‘City of Empire to City of Diversity’  to both primary and secondary schools as well as public venues across the region.  The exhibition looks at the migration stories of people moving to Birmingham particularly from the 1940’s – 10980’s and is accompanied by a wealth of online materials and a Theatre in Education programme to help young people consider and reflect the lives of others and their impact on the city of Birmingham.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Sampad Associate Schools Launches this summer.  We are offering a package which includes reduced price workshops, our ‘City of Empire to City of Diversity’ exhibition and a Diwali performance for schools.  Come to our Celebration of the City of Empire to City of Diversity Project Celebration and Launch of our Associate Schools programme on Wednesday 12th July from 3.30 – 5pm at the MAC.  Email for further details.

Anything else to share

We are currently working with a group from Chelmsley Wood and are keen to link with Solihull artists (any art form)  who have experience of working with vulnerable adults.

Music Performers
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Skylar Mabry

Creative producer with a background in theatre and community engagement. Currently working primarily with Parrabbola (a nomadic cultural organisation specialising in community arts), Skylar produces and manages creative and community engagement projects, in addition to facilitating workshops and sometimes performing. Passionate about making creative expression and meaningful community creativity available to those who might not otherwise seek out creative and cultural experiences.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

On Yer Bike, Solihull! was a community musical produced as part of the celebration of the Queen's Baton Relay through Solihull. Performed by a cast of Solihull community members, this extravagant musical was an experience not soon to be forgotten!

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Currently developing a literacy development project over summer with Cars Area Together - encouraging kids to practice reading by engaging them with theatrical storytelling based off of stories in books.

Art Class
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Sohan Kailey

Award Winning Performing Artist. Provides exciting cultural dance and storytelling workshops throughout schools. Vibrant Bhangra and Bollywood dance workshop to promote cultural diversity and healthy lifestyles. There are a wide variety of workshops to suit schools and link to the curriculum.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

There are numerous projects that I have been a part of one of which was the Solihull CEP Youth Arts Consultation where I worked with Reception, KS2 and KS3 pupils. Promoting Bhangra and Bollywood dancing and getting the children to create their own dance piece. It was a very rewarding project and the outcome was fantastic enabling the students to shine through their creativity. I have also been a part of the 2022 Commonwealth Games and British Council project working with local schools in the West Midlands and India / Asia. Another project working with schools across Worcestershire on the Spring and Summer Games competitions over the last few years.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Exciting Dance Workshops for schools:

I am available for Culture and Diversity Week, Healthy Schools Projects, PE and Sports Days, workshops to link in with the school curriculum.

Freestyle Bhangra Fusion Dance (Primary and Secondary) Bollywood Heat Dance (Primary and Secondary) These workshops include interactive storytelling and puppetry with music and dance:

Bhangra Tots (EYFS)

Pirate Adventure (EYFS and Primary)

Under the Sea Adventure (EYFS and Primary) 

Dinosaur Adventure (EYFS and Primary)

Rumble in the Jungle (EYFS and Primary)

Space Adventure (EYFS and Primary)

Enchanted Dragons (EYFS and Primary)

Robin Hood Adventure (EYFS and Primary)

Incredible India Topics, Holi, Diwali, Vaisakhi (EYFS and Primary)

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Tiger Features

My work includes documentary filmmaking, producing digital artwork, filming projects and events, I also teach/ facilitate film making projects within lots of different, diverse communities My film career started over a decade ago filming and producing adverts and customer insight films for clients such as L'Oreal, River Island, John Lewis, Jaguar and Ebay. My digital artwork has been displayed at various galleries throughout the UK including Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and along side Grayson Perry’s artwork at The National Trust. For the past 8 years I have filmed and produced documentaries that support my personal theme of love and acceptance, filming over 200 adults and children sharing their personal stories and lived experiences.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

I have just produced a short County Lines Film which I wrote, filmed, directed and editied. It was really exciting to work with some many different partners including West Mercia Police, Worcester Cathedral and varous rail companies. I was employed to produce a film to create awareness and help people notice those reachable moments when they can safely step in and help a vulnerable person who is a victim of County Lines.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

I am currently working on a number of projects including facitiltating lots of summer film making workshops at The Core. I am also in colaboration with Geese Theatre working in young people's secure units to deliver film and theare projects. These projects will help the participants in gaining confidence and to make more positive choices going forward. They will also gain film, theatre and production skills to help with future employment opportunities.

Film show
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Urban Heard: Youth Engagement Specialist CIC

Vision: All teenagers to feel safe, supported & loved, in order to live a happy, healthy and fulfilled life.

Mission: Our mission is for all teenagers to have a safe space & opportunities to grow, develop, learn & express themselves.

Urban Heard is on a mission to work with disadvantaged/disaffected young people (YP) aged 14-17, involved in harmful behaviours, by providing quality peer-led behaviour change interventions, diversionary activities & quality mentoring. Building resilience & developing YP’s self-efficacy through training & empowering projects, giving skills, employment/bursaries and building confidence for a better future.

Our unique 3-staged model recruits, trains & empowers YP to deliver peer-created bespoke behaviour change campaigns in their community & online e.g.creating music, films, animations and film. This allows our projects to be youth-centred and peer-led, harnessing the power of positive peer pressure, whilst providing a safe, therapeutic and altruistic environment for all YP involved.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Our music project is really successful at challenging young people to write their lived experience into lyrics. Here is our mixtape on Soundcloud:

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Our music project is currently open to anyone interested.

Anything else to share

We would love to work in partnership with an artist as we would like to do an art project to decorate our youth centre.

Crafts Activity
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Vicky Chapple - ArtsandCraftsV

I’m a practicing artist in acrylics, and mixed media, and also teach in further education. I’ve exhibited my artwork in the Ikon Gallery, 2021, and The Herbert Museum & Art Gallery 2016 and 2023. Together with many local galleries across Warwickshire and Birmingham. I have also provided art and craft sessions to older people, eg BUPA, Age UK Birmingham, and early years for SureStart in Birmingham.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

Age UK Birmingham’s Renew You project where I was the artist who led adults from 42 - 80 years, primary with dementia, on a fantastic shared project culminating in a wonderful huge art piece of a quarter section of a sunflower! This was framed and still hangs in one of the day care centres. The artwork quarter section of a sunflower became my logo.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

Providing art sessions, classes, crafting for older people and also early years and their parent/carer. To help socialising and avoid isolation, make new friends and socialise, take part in an activity and learn new skills. Basic English and maths can be incorporated.

Film show

Wizzleworld Dramatics CIC

Wizzleworld Dramatics uses creative and performing arts skills to create wellbeing sessions across the borough. The core focus is on improving mental health in children.

Give us an example of an exciting project you have done/ been part of.

We are currently working on a HS2 funded project that will last 3 years. This project encourages communities to appreciate and protect local woodland spaces that are being affected by the HS2 development.

What opportunities have you got open right now?

We have spaces for our weekly sessions for children aged 7-11. We also run adult sessions where we create woodland habitats, litter pick the woodland sites and create resources for nature trails.

If you would like to be listed on our cultural directory, please fill in our short form

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