About Different Planet Arts
How we started:
Different Planet Arts sprang out of multimedia/theatre collaboration between Paddington Arts, Same Sky and Turtle Keys Arts. After a very successful 6 years running theatrical events for people with special needs and learning difficulties based on Outer Space a new company was born. Different Planet Arts is an exciting cross-arts initiative aimed at hard to reach individuals and communities. We have combined our skills and experience as performers, visual and digital artists, musicians, drama therapists, storytellers, and facilitators to create this vibrant new company. We encourage reverse inclusion in the projects, with the aim of providing a diverse cultural platform that is accessible to all. We undertake a range of cross arts and commercial commissions. These include participatory theatre and performances, installations, site-specific and touring shows, and workshops. We can offer expertise for your project and events (creative direction, project management, specialist facilitation, production and creative learning). We offer bespoke, affordable projects and events for all ages and abilities.
Working with creatives:
We work with a wide variety of artists and practitioners including visual artists, actors, dancers, storytellers, digital artists, musicians, and arts therapists.
Working with volunteers:
We involve volunteers across the operational and creative aspects of our work, they are valuable members of our team. If you are interested in volunteering please get in touch!
Different Planet Arts Team:
Ariane Hadjilias - Director
Ariane completed an MA in Dramatherapy at Roehampton University in 2007 and is a registered Arts Psychotherapist and member of The British Association of Dramatherapists. Before becoming the Director of Different Planet Arts Ariane worked widely as a dramatherapist with children and adolescents in several settings including Whippersnappers and Kids Company as well as working in adult mental health in a variety of settings including therapeutic communities and primary health care. She has a passion for inclusive arts and the power of creativity to transform and bring joy to our lives. Ariane has worked extensively within cross-arts initiatives in community led arts as a workshop facilitator, producer and project manager in areas of theatre participation, engagement, and diversity. She studied physical theatre at the Desmond Jones School of Mime and Physical Theatre, and Commedia dell Arte and Mask Theatre at Centre Selavy in France and apprenticed in traditional storytelling with Ben Haggerty. She has pursued further training in Playback, Forum Theatre, fooling and clowning.
Ariane has also worked as a freelance traditional storyteller for 15 years and devises and performs shows for adults and children, for the street, festivals, and stage in the UK and further afield. She has worked for The Southbank, The Round House Theatre, Liverpool Children’s Festival, The Komedia in Brighton, Ray Mears, The National Trust, WOMAD, Groundwork and Edmonton International Storytelling Festival.
Natasha has been working as a freelance inclusive dance practitioner, Project Manager and Education Consultant since 2000 and is the Co Founder & Artistic Director of Parable Dance. She has a specialism in delivering high quality dance classes to people with and without disabilities and in designing and delivering training and mentoring to enable others to develop their skills of inclusion.
Natasha has worked with a number of inclusive arts organisations including Magpie Dance (as Co Artistic Director and Training Coordinator), Candoco Dance Company, Rounded Rhythm, The Orpheus Centre, Epic Arts and 3ddance. She has also worked/ delivered projects for prestigious dance organisations including The RAD, Sadler’s Wells, Trinity Laban, Essex Dance and South East Dance. As well as her inclusive practice,Natasha has also held a number of teaching and Head of Dance positions in schools and colleges in the South East and worked as Brighton and Hove Council’s Youth Dance Development Officer (maternity leave). Natasha has a BA (Hons) in Dance Theatre from Trinity Laban and a PGCE in Post Compulsory Education
Different Planet Arts Board of Trustees:
Gavin Taylor - Chair
Gavin holds a BA in Theatre from the University of New Hampshire and qualified as a drama therapist at Roehampton University in 2008. He has nearly two decades of experience developing theatre projects, primarily working in stagecraft, technical theatre and puppetry. His arts in education and disability credits range from work with the Edinburgh Science Festival through the Little Angel Puppet Theatre to the City of London Festival. Since 2007 Gavin has helped manage advice, welfare and disability services at St. George’s, University of London.
Anna is a Brighton based inclusive artist, film maker, poet and teacher with an MA in Inclusive Arts Practice from the University of Brighton. She works as Head of Art at The Lindfield School, a secondary special needs school in Eastbourne.
In 2015, Anna set up "CAT: Creating Art Together", a free art group for parents and carers of children with disabilities in Brighton funded by Springboard Grants and Scope. Her work has been shared with local groups and organisations including Brighton Disability Research Network (University of Brighton), Cultureshift and BSMS (Brighton and Sussex Medical School).
Her film "Handle with Care" was shown at the De La Warr Pavilion and Crowborough Community Centre as part of Cultureshift's "Get Connected" events. She has also shared work at C21 writing events including "Storying the Self" a symposium held at the University of Brighton and Sussex Carers' Conference (BSMS). Anna is a regular participant and contributor to Scope Local People's Programme Brighton and is a mentor for The Girls' Network.
David Parker - Secretary
David is currently the Senior Producer for Carousel, an arts organisation working with learning disabled artists to develop their artistic ambition and produce film, digital work, music and performance.
The Oska Bright Film Festival is one such project. It is now in its 8th year and has received and shown short films made by learning disabled artists from over 15 countries worldwide. The films are selected, curated and presented by a team of learning disabled exhibitors, artists and filmmakers. David is also the co-founder of Figment Arts, a company set up to produce films, animations, projections, installations and exhibitions with people who have limited access to the arts. David has a background in sculpture and animation and has produced commissions for Brighton Festival, the Barbican and Storm of Stories.
Chris Buckley is a Brighton-based SEN teacher, school leader, musician, and performance poet and is currently working as leader of an Autism Centre in a large junior school in Crawley.
Chris has worked in a wide range of capacities in SEN education including music teacher, pastoral tutor, middle and senior leader. These roles have been within primary, secondary and further education in residential and non-residential settings working with children and young people with complex and multiple diagnoses and challenging behaviour. Chris has been involved in numerous projects enabling people with disabilities to engage meaningfully in designing and implementing creative arts events. These have included community action projects with MENCAP, live performances in high profile venues, setting up a record label for young adults with disabilities, running a music and performing arts festival, installing and running a recording studio and many more besides.
Chris has a degree in Music Composition and Technology and is a qualified teacher and behaviour specialist. He also loves sea swimming, walking his dogs and playing a lot of guitar.
Sue Stevens - Treasurer
Sue Stevens is self-employed and qualified as a Bookkeeper in 1989. Sue also runs a Payroll bureau, as has worked for various charities and small businesses in the South East providing advice and support as well as training in various aspects of accounting procedures. Before this Sue worked for Lloyds bank for a number of years, a career which has fulfilled Sue’s love for numbers. Sue lives by the Sea in Sunny Peacehaven. Enjoying the coastal scenery and living close to her 2 children. When Sue isn’t out visiting clients she enjoys socialising with her friends. Her husband says ‘she is always out’. Sue and her Husband Trevor enjoy their holidays anything from Cruises to trips in the Campervan in the UK.
Within my role of Treasurer, I also bring my knowledge of Financial Services, gained from an earlier career in Building Societies.