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Photos by Gill Horitz


Priest's House Theatre Company

This Is Who I Am: Hidden Stories From Priest's House Museum

Creative Drama Workshops & Exhibition in partnership with State Of Play Arts and Priest's House Museum, Wimborne

A new pilot project for 2014: Persuasion Arts worked in partnership with State Of Play Arts and The Priest's House Museum, on an exciting arts and cultural project celebrating the lives of disabled people from East Dorset and beyond.

The project aimed to introduce more disabled people to the museum and encourage them to interact with the rooms and their artefacts; to feel comfortable about working in, and exploring an environment, which for many disabled people can be unfamiliar and daunting territory.

The project offered participants the opportunity to explore some of the fascinating objects in Priest House Museum's collection, and collect new stories about them through drama, movement and music.


Phase 1:

Over three sessions, our group of eight participants toured the museum and its stores; devising stories and working with its artefacts and their own personal objects.

For the final session, we created a site-specific story in the museum, where, inspired by their personal objects, each group chose a space that best suited their placing, and devised mini stories about them.

Phase 2:

Our group met monthly to develop their stories and create new ones; working towards curating an exhibition at Priest's House Museum.

The exhibition mixed visual art with written stories and launched with a live performance on 12 July, remaining at the Museum throughout the Autumn.

What people say:

 "This project is a wonderful opportunity to involve groups in the local community, who have previously found it difficult to make use of the museum, collecting their stories and helping them to access and benefit from the collections that the Museum holds."

Emma Ayling, Curator, Priest's House Museum

My favourite moment was when we looked around the stores where they had old gas masks from world war 2 and other fascinating objects”

Lau - Participant

“Because we were able the use the museum rooms and objects it added a different dimension to our stories and objects.  Also we learnt and became part of the museum’s history.” 

Hayley - Participant

Nina gained confidence and you managed to achieve so much in such a short time. It was brilliant. Thank you!”

Paivi - Parent