Village Pub Theatre / Stellar Quines event – call out for submissions

The Village Pub Theatre and Stellar Quines are collaborating to create an evening of new short plays to celebrate International Day of the Girl on October 11th 2017

International Day of the Girl is a global campaign to raise awareness of the inequality faced by girls around the world based on their gender. This inequality includes areas such as right to education/access to education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care, violence against women, unfree child marriage and protection from discrimination.

As part of this event we would like to hold open submissions for playwrights of any level of experience to submit a short play, no longer than 10minutes long that responds to the theme ‘the role of the girl’. We are looking for people to interpret this theme in a variety of ways but roughly we are looking for writers to explore what role girl’s play in our society, how they relate to other people, how other people relate them.

Stellar Quines and Village Pub Theatre will select three of these plays to be performed on 11th October by a team of professional actors and director at the Village Pub Theatre, Leith.

There is a fee available of £100 for the selected plays plus travel. You must be free to attend rehearsals and performance in Leith on 11th October in order to be considered.

Please submit your 10 minute play by midnight on Sunday 24th September using the online form

Please note files will be uploaded to Stellar Quines’ Google Drive. To allow for file upload you will be required to sign in to Google to access the form. If you do not have a google account you will need to create one. If you would prefer not to submit a form via google please email Rebecca Davis with Village Pub Theatre in the subject title (Rebecca is on annual leave until the 18 September and will reply to queries promptly on her return).

Rebecca Donnelly performing in The Last Queen of Scotland

Rebecca Donnelly is delighted to be performing at the Fringe for the first time with Stellar Quines, performing in Patricia Panther’s role in The Last Queen of Scotland on Friday 18th and Saturday 19th August.

Her credits include : Still Game Live, Taking the Next Step, Glasgow Girls, We Will Rock You and Britains Got Talent. Rebecca loves being apart of a Scottish story and hopes you enjoy it too.

Jaimini Jethwa speaks to the Scotsman

When the official took Jaimini Jethwa’s passport on her arrival at Kampala, he looked at it for a long time. As he handed it back to her, he said only two words: “Welcome home.”

“Traditionally, Indian culture isn’t really interested in history in that sense,” she says. “I think they feel it’s much more important to move forward, their priority is to take care of their children. My dad has also got quite an African philosophy and approach to things. He doesn’t want to speak about Idi Amin. He says: ‘Why did you write about him?’”

It’s a story about identity, Levyck says, and how it’s sometimes not straightforward, like being a Ugandan Asian who speaks with a broad Dundonian accent. “Scotland is a changing nation, it’s becoming more integrated, it’s a very open nation, a very outward-looking international country, this felt to me like a really international story but with its roots really firmly stuck in something really local.”

Read the full article here

Jaimini Jethwa on BBC Reporting Scotland

“Maybe it’ll give the next generation of people a different perspective of who they are in the world and instead of sort of hiding and running away from things they could maybe step up and own their history.”

Jaimini Jethwa writer of Last Queen of Scotland speaks to BBC about how she has turned her family history into a show. Watch Here from 23:35

 

 

Parents in Performing Arts Coffee Morning at Fringe Central

Stellar Quines & Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society are hosting a family friendly coffee morning for parents in the performing arts at Fringe Central, Appleton Tower on Monday 14 August.

Join other parents/carers and their children at an informal coffee morning. A chance to relax, socialise, reconnect with the sector and chat about the barriers facing carers working in the performing arts.

A crèche is available from 10.30-15.00, places are free but limited and will be assigned on a first come first serve basis. This crèche is suitable for those caring for pre-school children, however we welcome older children to join the coffee morning. To book a crèche place or to inform us of any access needs, please email fringecentral@edfringe.com.

BOOK TICKETS

 

Join the team – Company Administrator

COMPANY ADMINISTRATOR
DEADLINE FRIDAY 18TH AUGUST 2017. 12PM

COMPANY INFORMATION
Stellar Quines retains a unique position within the cultural ecology of Scotland, as one of the few arts organisations whose primary occupation is concerned with the role of women and girls.

Our vision is to be Scotland’s leading touring theatre company, inspiring excellence in women & girls supported by our mission to Celebrate the value and diversity of women and girls by making brilliant theatre, provoking change, nurturing artists and empowering participation.

Stellar Quines is both a registered charity and a company limited by guarantee having no share capital. It is governed by its charitable objects and Memorandum and Articles of Association.

ROLE SPECIFICATION
The Company Administrator will be responsible for the efficient and effective administration of the company, supporting the team to deliver current aims & objectives and ensuring the smooth running of the company.

SKILLS, EXPERIENCE & PERSON SPECIFICATION

  • 2 years professional experience in an administrative role.
  • Experience in office management including establishing and maintaining procedures and operating systems (including working with external suppliers), reviewing and managing policies, health and safety and legal compliance.
  • Book-keeping experience, and/or experience of managing an accounts system such as Xero.
  • Proficient IT skills ideally in Mac and PC, with working experience in the Office 365 suite.
  • A keen eye for detail and a conscientious work ethic.
  • Calm and confident with excellent interpersonal skills.
  • An interest in the work of Stellar Quines.

Stellar Quines is committed to promoting Equality, Diversity and Inclusion. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds, particularly applications from people returning to work returning to work from parental/caring responsibilities and black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) candidates.

JOB SPECIFICATIONS

  • £22,000 (pro rata FTE), 21 hours (0.6 of a full time 35 hour equivalent), permanent payroll position based in the Stellar Quines office.
  • Line managed by the Producer
  • Interviews will be held 29 – 31 August and appointments are expected to be made in September 2017, with post starting in October (flexible).
  • Further information: CA APPLICATION PACK.FINAL

APPLICATION PROCESS
To apply please send the following documents to Rebecca@stellarquines.co.uk
by 12pm 18th August 2017:

  • A current CV (max 2 pages, including referees)
  • A letter that includes; why you are an appropriate candidate for the post, answering the Company Administrator Job Description – COMPANY ADMINISTRATOR_JD.
  • EQUALITIES MONITORING FORM
  • Please also tell us how you found out about the post.

If you would like to have an informal chat about joining Stellar Quines please contact Rebecca Davis (Producer) via email at rebecca@stellarquines.co.uk or call 0131 229 3851.

Join the team – Creative Learning Associate

Stellar Quines Theatre Company is looking to recruit a Creative Learning Associate. 

Deadline: Friday 18 August, 12PM

Stellar Quines retains a unique position within the cultural ecology of Scotland, as one of the few arts organisations whose primary occupation is concerned with the role of women and girls.

Our vision is to be Scotland’s leading touring theatre company, inspiring excellence in women & girls supported by our mission to Celebrate the value and diversity of women and girls by making brilliant theatre, provoking change, nurturing artists and empowering participation.

Stellar Quines is both a registered charity and a company limited by guarantee having no share capital.  It is governed by its charitable objects and Memorandum and Articles of Association.

ROLE SPECIFICATION

The Creative Learning Associate will be responsible for developing and delivering a wide-ranging programme of learning, outreach and participatory activities.  This post will be driven by the candidate’s artistic enquiry, framed by Stellar Quines’ vision and mission.

This is a new post that will introduce a new focus for the company; connecting with communities, young people, educational institutions and offering skills & training opportunities.  The post holder will deliver on our strategic priority to increase participation and learning, while enabling and developing participants, which in return will feed into and inspire our wider programme.

SKILLS & PERSON SPECIFICATION

  • A minimum of 2 years professional experience as a creative learning practitioner, delivering engagement activities and projects in a number of settings
  • Experience in developing and delivering a creative learning strategy
  • Proven track record in fundraising for creative learning activities
  • Ability to develop and maintain relationships with a variety of partners, venues and organisations
  • An interest in the work of Stellar Quines
  • Calm and confident with excellent interpersonal skillI
  • Interest in gender and gender equality

Stellar Quines is committed to promoting Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.  We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds, particularly applications from people returning to work from parental/caring responsibilities, and black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) candidates.

JOB SPECIFICATION

  • Freelance £4800 fee + expenses, 0.4 FTE fixed-term post, across a six-month term period
  • Line managed by Artistic Director | Chief Executive
  • Interviews and appointments are expected to be made in September 2017, with post starting in October (flexible).
  • Due to the nature of the funding for this post, an appointment will be made in the first instance for a six-month period.  Extension will be dependent on our Creative Scotland regular funding outcome (due January 2018)
  • Further information: CLA APPLICATION PACK.FINAL

APPLICATION PROCESS

To apply please send the following documents to info@stellarquines.co.uk

Deadline: Friday 18th August 2017 at 12pm

  • A current CV (max 2 pages, including referees)
  • A letter that includes: why you are an appropriate candidate for the post (answering the Job Description – Creative Learning Associate JD.FINAL), a statement of vision for your role as Creative Learning Associate, outlining your strategy, area of artistic enquiry and proposed programme of work for the initial six-month period, and beyond
  • EQUALITIES MONITORING FORM
  • Please also tell us how you found out about the post.

If you would like to have an informal chat about joining Stellar Quines please contact Jemima Levick, Artistic Director | Chief Executive, at jemima@stellarquines.co.uk

 

Jaimini Jethwa Pecha Kucha Night

Jaimini Jethwa born in Africa grew up in Scotland, Dundee. Writer, Yoga Instructor, Live music producer, Video Producer, Abertay University, filmmaker, short films screened at Edinburgh fringe festival and playwright with upcoming production Last Queen Of Scotland produced by Stellar Quines and in association with Dundee Rep and National Theatre Scotland. Jaimini talks to Creative Dundee about her experiences.

Jaimini Jethwa PKN

Neil Cooper talks to writer Jaimini Jethwa about going back to her roots

JAIMINI Jethwa was one year old when she and her parents were forced to leave Uganda and move to Dundee. That was in August 1972, when Uganda’s larger than life president Idi Amin had ordered the expulsion of all 80,000 Asian Ugandans from the country within a ninety-day period or else face the consequences. Before they left, Jethwa’s father had his own business, but Amin took that and everything else. When Jethwa’s family arrived in Dundee, her father had £7 in his pocket, and they were housed on a council estate in Fintry.

With little memory of the country where she was born, Jethwa and her family were the only family of colour on the estate. Any discussion within the family of who they were and how they ended up there was taboo. Jethwa became a film-maker, has worked on short films for the BBC, and developed specialist skills working with vulnerable young people and adults. Even though she was now based at Abertay University, she still had questions she wanted to ask about where she was from, and why as a child she’d been scared to go outside for reasons she couldn’t understand.

Jethwa was coming up to her fortieth birthday, and was in Spain. Conscious of how her own anniversary tallied with the fortieth anniversary of the expulsion, she found herself writing a poem. It wasn’t a documentary poem like the films she worked on, but was something both more personal and dramatic. Jethwa wanted to expand on this, and, through Creative Scotland’s International fund, visited Uganda. Once here, she talked to people who knew Amin and others who had lived through his terrors.

The result of this is The Last Queen of Scotland, Jethwa’s new dramatisation of the Asian Ugandan experience in response to being forced into exile by Amin’s brutal regime. Produced by Stellar Quines Theatre Company with support from the National Theatre of Scotland and Dundee Rep, the play, like her prodigal’s return, has seen Jethwa to face up to some of her personal demons.

“In a way it was me trying to find Idi Amin,” she says, mid-way through talking about a journey to writing The Last Queen of Scotland that was as much a mental and emotional one as it was physical. “I was reading books and watching films, and just became immersed in everything about him. It was like I was with Idi Amin all the time. He saturated my brain, and I wanted to follow in his footsteps. To exorcise the trauma I had to get close to him, so close that it made me sick, because I was frightened.

“It was the same as when I was a toddler, and I was scared to go out because I was frightened of seeing soldiers on the street. I didn’t know where that came from, because, culturally, Indian people don’t like to talk about what happened at all. Indian people are very good at moving forward. It was just something that happened, and then you moved on. I began to become aware of it all when I was about sixteen, and I started to make correlations in my mind. I decided that I had to face up to my fears, and the only way of doing that was by going back to Uganda.”

By this time, Jethwa had met Giles Foden at a symposium in London. Foden’s novel, The Last King of Scotland, was a fictional account of Amin’s regime which went on to be adapted for a film directed by Kevin Macdonald and starring Forest Whittaker and James McAvoy. After Jethwa explained to Foden the story she wanted to tell, Foden gave his blessing to the as-yet-unwritten play and its title.

“A lot of people who came from Uganda were sent to Leicester,” says Jethwa, “but we ended up in Dundee. When I started researching Idi Amin and learnt about his obsession with Scotland, it made me think, because he took Uganda off me, and we came here, and then he wanted to take Scotland off me, and I thought, nah, you’re not having that.”

Rather than tell her own story, Jethwa has fleshed out her play with her own fiction of a young woman older than her, and who remains more aware of what was going on when she left Uganda.

“I decided I wanted to do something that was visceral,” says Jethwa, “and which was something that could touch people. This is my love letter to Dundee for giving me a life. It’s a local story in that way, a community story. Dundee was quite a tough city when I first came here, and the play looks at trying to fit in. The character in the play gets into some very dangerous situations, and I think what I want the play to shed a light on is how she comes through that. One of the reasons I wanted to get this story out there is for people who are going through something similar now, and who might be confused about it. It’s also about owning your own history, and to not be ashamed of it.”

As directed by Stellar Quines artistic director and former head of Dundee Rep, Jemima Levick, and performed by Rehanna MacDonald, The Last Queen of Scotland previews in Dundee before forming part of this year’s Made in Scotland showcase at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

“We’re living in a different cultural climate,” says Jethwa. “Dundee is a multi-cultural city now, but if you go to the outskirts, like any place there’s still some old school ideas around. Other than that, Dundee has been transformed.”

Jethwa illustrates this with a story that took place just before she visited Uganda. “I was really nervous about going, and I went to the pub and bumped into these black Ugandan people. I was just staring at them, and eventually went and talked to them. It turned out they were at the University and were staying in Dundee. Part of me thought that me going to Uganda was going to be the end of my life, but these people put me in touch with their pals over there, and were really helpful.”

As a film-maker, Jethwa is conscious about wanting her story to reach as wide an audience as possible. If her play was to be filmed, there is so much she could expand on, she says. As a play too, Jethwa wants The Last Queen of Scotland to leave its mark.

“I want to try and open up theatre in a new style,” she says. “So many stories about refugees are restricted to black and Asian theatre, and one of my challenges is to get this to a mass audience. I would like to see it put on in Uganda, as well as other places where there is a big issue of segregation. That story is relevant anywhere. It’s not just about refugees, but obviously where we are politically just now makes that really important as well. There were people coming over here from Uganda who didn’t have a choice where they lived, and who came here with nothing. But it’s not just about the expulsion of Asians from Uganda. It has to have a resonance about human beings anywhere.”

The Last Queen of Scotland previews at Dundee Rep, July 21-22 then plays at Underbelly in Edinburgh, August 3-26, 6.50pm

Neil Cooper – The Herald