The Electric Sunshine Project (TESP) is a new not-for-profit organisation in Blackpool whose main focus is to provide high-quality arts activities for all.
The name of the organisation was inspired by events of 1879, when Blackpool became the first town in the world to have electric street lighting; they called it ‘electric sunshine’. The Electric Sunshine Project aims to capture this spirit of aspiration, innovation and creative solution and, through the arts, to reinvent perceptions of what Britain’s best-loved seaside town can offer the rest of the world.
Artistic Director Melanie Whitehead has over 20-years of working for such organisations as Royal Shakespeare Company, National Theatre, Geese Theatre, Touring Consortium Theatre Company, The Lowry, Blackpool Grand Theatre and LeftCoast and she maintains a large network of relationships with excellent practitioners. She believes passionately in the power of participation in and access to the arts as important and effective tools for individual and social change.
It is crucial that TESP’s programme is informed by and feeds into the North West region and that includes working in partnership with commercial and public sector organisations as well as listening to the views and needs of those who live here.
We are constantly looking for creative ways to minimise costs, to maximise opportunities for creative individuals and to provide long-term solutions to social isolation issues that exist in the town and surrounding areas.
TESP is keen to use the history of the town’s thriving entertainment industry as a model for economic growth. However, our purpose is not only to entertain but to offer a range of stimulus for engagement, reflection and challenge.
As government funding for arts is being consistently reduced nationally, we need to look to the US model of philanthropic giving; where organisations of all sizes work with not-for-profit companies to find areas where their social responsibility goals align.
Working with others to discover creative opportunities that arise around people, places and projects resulting in stronger and more resilient communities and with a more diverse, participatory and high quality arts provision in the area.
For example, we know that businesses often:
- have under-used spaces that would be perfect for holding workshops, events, performances and training courses
- employ workers with a diverse range of practical skills who are seeking personal and professional development opportunities and who would benefit from taking part in practical and active volunteering schemes
- need to support management teams in developing innovative approaches to confidence, presentation-skills, team-working and leadership
- own equipment that is no longer useable by your company but which could be perfect for an emerging arts organisation
- look for different kinds of social events and locations for staff teams as well as hosting clients and potential partners
- develop corporate social responsibility plans that include supporting young people, marginalised communities and the arts and have budget for implementing these
We hope that you will be interested in having a conversation with us about partnership opportunities that might suit your organisation or you as an individual – please do contact us.
We are grateful to these organisations for their support so far: