Published on 27 July 2023

MESH Out & About at Stand and Be Counted Theatre in Bradford

We visited Theatre in the Mill at Bradford University today (Wednesday 26th July) to take part in something very special. Every Wednesday, 11am – 1pm, Rosie Macpherson from Stand and Be Counted Theatre ( runs a session there called Soap Box. This is open to adults who want to come together in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere to meet new people and practise their English in a creative way. 

The lovely group that we met today were from China, Myanmar and Dubai. After checking in, talking about how we were and what we’d been up to this week, we were all put into pairs and created colourful portraits of each other. Embarrassment at dusting off our art skills soon gave way to the joy of creation, and getting absorbed in speaking to each other and finding out as much as we could to include in our portraits. When our masterpieces were complete, we showed them to the group and committed to speaking about them for 30 seconds to a minute – most people were so absorbed in telling everyone about their portraits, they ended up speaking for much longer! What a wonderful way to develop new vocabulary and practice speaking English.

Every week the group does something different – we heard about last week, when they created and performed musical pieces using themselves as the instruments! There was so much enthusiasm, and Rosie created the perfect environment for creative expression.

These sessions are open to everyone, and also run on Thursdays in Sheffield. Please do let your learners know about this wonderful resource….they are always waiting to welcome new friends.

By Angela Palmer

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