Unbound is Queens Park Arts Centre's in-house storytelling company, founded in 2014 with the mission statement: " Tell great stories".
The project aims to create learning and performance opportunities in the fields of drama, creative writing and theatre studies for members of the local community.
The programme launched in Autumn 2014 with a special evening of performances, readings, live workshops and demonstrations from a variety of local practitioners.
Two brand new weekly workshops then commenced throughout the term - 'Creative Writing' on Monday evenings, and 'Drama & Theatre' on Tuesday evenings. Tutors included local writers Claire Steele and Margaret Morgan-Owen, actors Erika Sanderson and David Pustansky, Madeleine Vose (director of local theatre company OpenScript), and the Creative Producer of Unbound, Dario Knight.
2015 was a big year for Unbound. With the weekly and one-day workshops continuing throughout the year the project presented its first full-length theatre show - a production of Harold Pinter's Betrayal, starring Erika Sanderson, Andy Holmes and Ben Jones and directed by Dario Knight.
A short while later David Pustansky hosted the inaugural Improv Comedy Evening featuring students of the drama course. This was followed by Unbound's first Storytelling Festival in May. The festival included a writing competition judged by the programme's tutors and journalist Heather Jan Brunt from the Bucks Herald.
To round off 2015 Unbound took over production of the Queens Park Pantomime. Beauty and the Beast - directed by Erika Sanderson and written by Dario Knight - broke all box office records and received great acclaim from audiences.
Unbound continued to develop in 2016 by establishing 'Unbound Sketchbook' - a team of writers and performers working to develop and expand the company's comedy output, beginning with Transcendental Mongoose - a brand new revue of sketches and stand-up comedy.
The popular 'Drama for Adults' group on a Tuesday continued apace, whilst the 'Creative Writing' class developed into a monthly workshop running on Sundays.
2016 also saw the launch of Unbound's 'Discover Shakespeare' project. This was made possible thanks to the generous support of Aylesbury Town Council and allowed Unbound to stage a special production entitled A Celebration of Shakespeare, which featured speeches, scenes, sonnets and songs marking 400 years since the death of England's greatest wordsmith. The project also included running Shakespeare-themed art and craft workshops for children - introducing them to the images and stories of Shakespeare's plays.
Unbound also participated in the 2016 One Act Drama Festival alongside fellow am dram groups the Jubilee Players and TopHATS, and held its second annual Improv Comedy Evening. The year ended with a production of Alice in Wonderland directed by David Pustansky and adapted by Dario Knight.
New developments for 2017 include the company's first Youth Theatre production (A Doll's House directed by Beatrice Benedek), as well the unveiling of 'Unbound Audio' and 'Unbound Film'. The company's audio arm will launch with the recording of two new comedy podcasts in the autumn, as well as audio versions of Unbound Sketchbook's two highly-successful sketch shows; 2016's Transcendental Mongoose and the 2017 show Farmers vs Pirates. Unbound Film began with the recording of two short films documenting Queens Park Arts Centre - Unbound's home.
Theatre studies will be added to the workshop programme with a series of one-off classes exploring directing, lighting design, stage combat and script writing joining the weekly Drama class and monthly Creative Writing workshop.
The 'Discover Shakespeare' project returned for 2017, again supported by Aylesbury Town Council. The company's production of Macbeth received high praise from audiences and was once again complemented by a series of workshop introducing younger artists and theatre makers to the play.
Unbound also performed two of Caryl Churchill's plays - A Number and Far Away - and will see the year out with a brand new pantomime production of Pinocchio - written and directed by Dario Knight.
If you would like to find out more about Unbound and how you can get involved, email Creative Producer Dario Knight via firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.