Brunel 200 Legacy Multi A – Travelling in Time: The Broad Gauge to Bristol.
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Travelling in Time: The Broad Gauge to Bristol

Multi Arts commissioned a dancer and a poet, working with a local engineer and a sound artist, to create and perform a piece with year 5 children from Easton Road and Four Acres primary schools.

The performances took place on Wednesday 29 March at The Wickham Theatre, Bristol, and brought together poetry, dance and music to explore the creation of the GWR between Bristol and London.

Project Manager, Ruth Hecht, said: “This project has been is a fantastic opportunity for two groups of children to be inspired by Brunel and the legacy he’s left; by working closely with a group of artists they’ve been able to transform their new knowledge into something truly unique to them.”

Multi A - Choreographer Laila Diallo with performer.

Choreographer Laila Diallo with performer.

The team who worked with the schools were Laila Diallo, a dancer and choreographer whose recent work includes choreography for the latest Harry Potter film and the London Old Vic’s winter production of Aladdin; Fiona Hamilton, a poet and fiction writer with a background in drama, teaching and counselling; Loben Tatlow, Lead Tutor in Sound Technology at the Basement Studios; Richard Ellam, a mechanical engineer, science communicator and interactive exhibit builder; and Paul Gilbert, an independent film maker who has been commissioned by local government and the education sector.

The filmmaker also worked with participating teachers to produce a DVD about the project for circulation to other schools in Bristol as a permanent educational resource.

Hester Cockcroft, said: “Brunel was an innovator, someone who was always pushing the boundaries of what was thought possible. We hope that in a similar way this project will enable the young participants to create, innovate and achieve far beyond their expectations.”

Multi A - Rehearsal with poet Fiona Hamilton

Poet Fiona Hamilton (top left) in rehearsal. Photo: Martin Kisco.

Facts and figures

Participating creative team: 6
Participating teachers: 2
Participating young people: 58
Audience for performances: 103

Contact Multi Arts at The Old Railway Station, Sea Mills Lane, Stoke Bishop, Bristol, BS9 1DX, telephone: 0117 968 7776 or e-mail:

Multi Arts' work inspires learning through the arts. Their programmes, led by experienced professional artists, assist teachers to ignite the spark of inspiration in young people that helps give them the means to learn successfully and thereby achieve in school.

You can watch the performance taken from the DVD below. (Requires Flash 6)
Rollover movie to reveal playback controls.
(Flash 6 plug-in required)


Photography: Mark Simmons.