Since 2011, we have worked in partnership with the Royal Exchange to demonstrate the power of theatre and drama as a way for homeless people to build new skills and self-confidence, and to empower them to start to rebuild their lives.
One participant, Pawel, who has been homeless, yet now performs regularly on the Royal Exchange stage, talked about his experience: “The only sickness of being on the street is doing nothing and being not interested in anything. You feel like you don’t matter. You feel like the whole world has forgotten you. You’re alone, and never hear anyone say well done. The drama shows you that you can do things, you speak to people rather than spending the day not talking to anyone and it builds up your confidence. When I perform it feels beautiful. It feels just like a sense of life, that’s what I do. It keeps me busy. I need to do something creative, it’s in my soul.”
Backstage? Me? has been developed to highlight the importance of theatre and arts projects such as this in offering long-term support to the homeless in our communities. Find out more about this innovative partnership and see some of the workshops in action here.
You can also read more about Pawel's success in the Manchester Evening News.