Artist Kid Carpet and primary school children across the UK to co-create work about failure

  • Kid Carpet has been working with children in local schools to co-create Epic Fail, a new theatre show inspired by engineering and failure  
  • Co-creation workshops will culminate in schools performances  
  • Activity happening in East Cardiff as well as ‘levelling up’ areas spanning Peterborough, Wigan, and Stoke on Trent  
  • Project to give more agency to undeserved communities  

 

This summer, acclaimed performance artist Kid Carpet will make and present playful new production Epic Fail with schools across the country. At a time when children are facing an unprecedented mental health crisis, with latest NHS figures showing a record-breaking over 400,000 under-18s a month being treated for mental health issues, the show aims to support young people in saying goodbye to perfectionism and instead embracing  failure. Working with arts organisations and year 5 pupils across the UK from May through to July, Kid Carpet will use hands on activities, workshops and performance to open up conversations around how failure is to be celebrated, not feared, to help children to get stuck in with new ideas and ways of working.  

In co-creating the show, children have also worked with female engineers and architects with workshops such as designing a bridge, or exploring Chindogu, a Japanese process of designing intentionally useless things, as part of the wider drive to encourage women in STEM and highlight a career path which children may not have considered. With young people continuing to feel both the academic and emotional effects of the pandemic, Epic Fail will also explore worries and ambitions of children in schools today to help overcome the fear of failure.  

Kid Carpet says “I noticed that my kids were becoming reluctant to have a go at new things and I realised that a fear of failure was preventing them from sticking their necks out. They were missing out on some really fun stuff. The Epic Fail project is an attempt to put some have-a-go attitude into the hearts of children. In this selfie-age it’s been helpful to remember that to get things wrong is a naturally human trait.”  

Epic Fail is the second project from Moving Roots, an ongoing social change initiative exploring new ways to tour co-created performances comprising Restoke (Stoke on Trent), Common Wealth (East Cardiff), The Old Courts (Wigan), Jumped Up Theatre (Peterborough) and Battersea Arts Centre (London). The areas include a selection of those specifically targeted for “levelling up” as well as communities such as those in East Cardiff, with Wales facing the highest child poverty rates across the UK.   

The initiative, now in its second year, gives local people the agency and empowerment to be a catalyst for creativity and leadership.  Moving Roots combines the expertise of arts organisations across the UK who are embedded within their local communities, to present artistically excellent work driven by their needs recognising how the arts can contribute towards long lasting social change.    

These organisations have also set up local Sound Boards to gain invaluable insight into what issues their communities are facing, and upskill and give resource to local people for them to be the agents of the change they want to see in their hometowns. 

Image by Thomas Byron Photography

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