Culture Chat with Katie Green

The Story Detectives

This month's Culture Chat takes us into the wonderful world of Made By Katie Green, where we discover more about their latest project, The Story Detectives, a dance performance designed for children, young people, and families touring Surrey Libraries from April 2023.

Bringing the past to life

Made By Katie Green has experience creating contemporary dance in places you might not expect, including caves, museums, and heritage sites. Artistic Director, Katie Green tells me more about their work. 'We're interested in telling stories about what it means to be human, what this has meant throughout history and how what has happened in the past affects us now.' Their website and articles show a deep understanding of engaging communities and empowering individuals to explore different topics through movement. This includes designing number codes to help with maths and inspiring the wider community to engage with their local heritage. Katie is passionate about the work she and her company create and the positive impact it can have on participants. Her enthusiasm makes you want to get on your feet and start moving!

If you go down to the library today, you're sure for a big surprise

Surrey libraries are a wonderful place to visit for free. They are home to newly published books and a huge back catalogue of publications, DVDs, eBooks, eAudioBooks and computer access. On top of this, they have regular and special events. Katie tells me more about what library visitors can expect when they book to see The Story Detectives, a hero and villain adventure. 'The audience will be invited to help characters, Playful and Particular, as they journey through the library; finding and solving clues, looking for letters and learning a movement code. The piece is designed to make children and young people aware of the magic of the library space and develop a love of reading and a love of books and creative writing.'

The two performers in the piece exude energy and draw the audience into their magical storytelling. Katie says, 'These performances are the perfect choice for families looking for something creative and different to do and a wonderful opportunity to introduce young people to the joy of dance.' Having high-quality, free arts activities is welcome by children and their accompanying adults, who can benefit from being in a creative space, letting their imaginations flourish. They can also pick up a free Activity Park from participating libraries in the run up to the performances, as an opportunity for them to create their own hero and villain adventure. What's more, the characters wear capes, and as we all know, if capes feature, it will be a marvel of adventure!

To get a sense of the project, you can watch The Story Detectives two-minute trailer, filmed at Ashford Library.

Amanda Glover from Surrey Libraries said 'We worked with Katie and with Delight Charity back in 2019 when they were first developing The Story Detectives at Guildford Library, and we're thrilled to have a chance to bring the project to a wider audience'

The Story Detectives tour dates 2023

  • 22 April Godalming Library
  • 29 April Woking Library
  • 20 May Horley Library
  • 30 May Epsom Library
  • 31 May Dorking Library
  • 2 June Farnham Library
  • 3 June Camberley Library
  • 10 June Ashford Library
  • 17 June Merstham Library
  • 24 June Redhill Library
  • 1 July Walton Library

Please see the Libraries in Surrey web page, for their addresses and contact details.

There is also a short Social Story Film which can be helpful for audiences who may want to know a little more about what to expect.

Made By Katie Green, can be found in public places and schools, and the company collaborates regularly with Delight Charity to deliver the 'Delight in Dance' project, through which they bring The Story Detectives to primary schools across Surrey and Croydon.

The Story Detectives is a Delight Charity commission created by Made By Katie Green. It is funded from 2022 to 2023 by the National Lottery through Arts Council England, Surrey Libraries, The Library Presents, Hillingdon Libraries, Plymouth Libraries and Dorset Council Libraries and has also been supported by the Touring Arts in Libraries (TAIL) project as part of the National Rural Touring Forum.

The Story Detectives, Made By Katie Green; photographer Roswitha Chesher, performers Megan Griffiths and Chloe Mead at Horley Library.

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