LeftCoast has lent its support to three exciting new arts projects as part of its ?Future Popular? mini commissions programme with the aim of inspiring communities through creative activities. The programme, which seeks to explore the cross over between entertainment, popular culture and art, will see friendly artists work with communities to enable them to be creative and try out new ways of expressing themselves.

Blackpool based photographers Claire Griffiths and Jill Reidy have been commissioned to run workshops in four children?s centres with their Whippersnappers project. The workshops will teach children about some of the key skills and techniques needed to take a good photograph. The project will culminate with an exhibition of some of the images where friends and family can come along and see what has been produced. Throughout their project Claire and Jill will be telling their story through a specially created blog at

Artist Linzi Cason has teamed up with sisters Helen and Elizabeth Wewiora (WewioraProjects) to create Blackpool Art Carbooty, a touring version of Northern Art Carbooty – a one day event supported by Arts Council England. Alongside the event LeftCoast have supported a performance by Blackpool based Harry Clayton-Wright and Manchester based Richard Sheilds who will recreate themes of the Royal Variety Show which took place at the Winter Gardens in 2009 and give members of the audience the chance to appear in it via green screen technology. Linzi will also be working with young people from Blackpool Boys & Girls Club to use screen printing to create the publicity materials over the summer and the public will be able to see the performance in and around the Winter Gardens on Halloween – Saturday 31 October 12-4pm.

Ladies acapella chorus, the Soundwaves, will be exploring how singing can benefit people living with dementia after one of their members was diagnosed with the condition. The group will be working alongside a musical director to create a series of medleys of songs from the 1950s, 60s and 70s which will be performed in residential homes to explore the therapeutic benefits of music to dementia sufferers.

Michael Trainor, artistic director of LeftCoast, said:


?The diversity of ideas coming from artists and creative groups across Blackpool and Wyre is really exciting and inspiring and it?s great to see them thinking about how they can involve communities with their work ? sharing great creative ideas and inspiring others is what it is all about.?

?We see ?Future Popular? as a way of helping artists and communities to experiment with new project ideas together. These commissions are a vital way of resourcing and making projects like this happen in difficult times.?

All three of the Future Popular projects are taking place over the coming months. The next round of Future Popular commissions will be open for applications from Monday 7 September. For more information visit