I had a good chat with Sandra Hall of Friction Arts about a variety of things recently, one of which is the ambitious and unique Reality Estate project that starts in the Five Ways Estate on October 28th. Beyond the basic numbers (“300 participants, 3 venues, 3 professional, 3 community and 3 estate-led choirs, an audience of 3,000, 1 aim: to sing Birminghamâ€™s truths”) it’s quite hard to properly articulate what it’s all about and why they’re doing it, so thankfully she and her partner Lee Griffiths are using their blog and YouTube to put it all in some context.
What struck me from talking to Sandra is how they’re desperate to avoid the trap of parachuting a community arts projects into an area without any consultation and then vanishing after a week. This is a long term scheme with some solid and in places quite old fashioned ideas behind it. It deserves to succeed I reckon.