Alltheskills’s Blog

July 2, 2011

Oldham Coliseum Theatre Open Day 2011

Filed under: circus skills, Community, Stilts, Walkabout — alltheskills @ 7:19 pm

  It was a gloriously sunny day as

members of the public arrived to find out just what

exactly takes place inside the doors of Oldham Coliseum

Theatre, one of England’s few remaining producing theatres.

Naomi returned to her former place of work bringing Sean with her to entertain the crowds with a little circus magic. The day began with meet and greet, visitors were welcomed by a very tall pink lady and a Gingerbread man (the Coliseum’s very own Peter Wakefield).

Run run as fast as you can—will you catch Peter the Gingerbread man?


Families were then able to try their hand at juggling, diabolo, plate spinning and flower stick. Congratulations to Alex who learnt to juggle today- well done and keep going!!!!!!!

representing the Coliseum and spinning a diabolo at the same time!

Sean teaching in the drop in Circus workshop


Sean also produced over 100 balloon animlas, flowers and ray guns.

It was fantastic to see the theatre so full of people and hopefully visitors saw that the Coliseum really does offer something for everyone. As well as watching a production there is the opportunity to be in one yourself or perhaps you are more interested in doing something hands on backstage? There are also playreading and writing groups and an activity group Full Circle for those over 50. Busy parents can leave their children having fun in a creative drama workshop while they go to Sainsburys and the annual pantomime offers fun for all the family.

Hope to see you all next year!!!!!


May 8, 2011

Prestwich Festival 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — alltheskills @ 9:36 pm


Thanks to NW Law and other local businesses joining together to sponsor the festival the 2011 Love Prestwich Festival is going ahead.

The event was launched on Friday 6th May at Prestwich Arts College in the new Paragon centre and All The Skills were invited back for the third year running to meet and greet the guests.

Naomi with the Mayor of Bury John Byrne, Festival organiser David Curtis, MP Ivan Lewis and the Town Crier!

Naomi greeted the special guests and sponsors in her own unique way, offering fortune cookies to see what the future held for various business owners, MPs and councillors. Sean’s balloon creations were popular with old and young alike, the flowers being particularly well received.

The weather was glorious for the launch day, let’s hope the past few days rain disappears and we have some sunshine for the rest of the festival.

For further info visit

January 17, 2011

The first gig of 2011!

Filed under: choreography, Community, dance — alltheskills @ 10:35 pm

Hello and Happy New (ish) Year everybody,

Naomi and Sean are wondering just how much longer we can keep greeting people with Happy New Year? Naomi plans to keep doing it until at least the end of the first week of Feb due to when Chinese New Year falls.

Anyway today was the first All The Skills gig of 2011 and what a fantastic start to the year it was. Naomi returned to the British Red Cross offices in Bolton to lead a cheerleading workshop with a group of female refugees and asylum seekers.

We started the session with a shake out and  learning to count in the many different languages spoken by the ladies. There were people there from China, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Italy and Pakistan and it was great that everybody felt able to contribute and teach each other something.

The group then learnt a number of cheerleading positions and movements before putting them together into 2 short chants. As well as learning new performance skills, learning the positions and chants were also a fun way of practicing their English speaking skills.

Learning the cheer routine to music was the part of the session the ladies seemed to enjoy the most (probably because Naomi kept forgetting her own choreography much to their amusement!). There was much enthusiasm and plenty of smiling faces which carried over into the last section where participants created and performed their own cheer routine in groups.

The ladies are always a pleasure to work with and very welcoming.  Naomi hopes she can visit the group again soon. In the meantime it is the men’s turn to experience an All The Skills workshop next week. Ben Cottam who runs the men’s group for the British Red Cross in Manchester has booked a creative writing workshop for next week where refugees and asylum seekers develop their writing skills in a fun, creative and imaginative way.

November 10, 2010

Terrance dances at The Garden of Light

Filed under: Chinese, Lion Dance, Uncategorized, Walkabout — alltheskills @ 1:28 pm

Terrance at The Garden of Light

Our Chinese dancing Lion Terrance has been on his travels once again!

This time Terrance and his musicians visited Chesterfield for three nights to dance and entertain the crowds at The Garden of Light Event. As this event happens at night Terrance attached lights to his head and body so everyone could see him coming and admire his dancing.

Many thanks to Jules and Sue from Swamp Circus Trust Ltd for inviting Terrance to perform in a new place-he is really enjoying his travels around England.

Halloween Happenings in Openshaw

Filed under: Community, Development, drama — alltheskills @ 1:14 pm

Naomi got into character to deliver her Halloween workshop!

Manchester Settlement based at The New Roundhouse in Openshaw are running  new programme of activities for children after school including drama, streetdance and arts and crafts. All The Skills have been hired to provide the drama workshops on this programme. .

This new programme of activities were promoted at a Halloween themed open days at the Roundhouse on the 30th October. There were taster workshops for all the different activities including “make a monster,” spooky facepanting and Naomi’s Halloween themed drama workshop.



As drama in all about getting into character and becoming somebody else Naomi delivered the workshop in full costume and Witch make up-causing only mild dismay in some of the younger children!

Naomi is currently leading these FREE drama  workshops on Monday afternoons.

3.30pm to 4.30pm is Drama for those aged 5-8 years old

4.30pm to 5.30pm is Drama for 9-13 year olds

Hope to see you there!

September 17, 2010

A new academic year!

Filed under: Uncategorized — alltheskills @ 9:40 pm

Sean and Naomi kicked off the new academic year this week by welcoming the new Year 3 intake to North Reddish Junior school with a fun Circus Skills workshop.

Year 3 are completing a cross-curricular project with a circus theme following the “Creative Curriculum” where subjects including English, Art and P.E. are taught in a cross curricular style.

In the workshop Year 3 learnt all about the different skills you might find in a circus and had a go at some of them for themselves. Flower sticks, plate spinning and poi spinning proved to be popular with one boy inventing his own poi move!  Diabolos proved a little more challenging but one little girl really impressed us by learning to juggle 3 scarves in less than an hour.

The staff at the school were very friendly and accomodating, an added extra bonus for Naomi and Sean was the tea and chocolate cake afterwards in the staff room! However Sean also particularly enjoyed being called “Miss” for the morning ha ha!

August 15, 2010

All The Skills return to Sunnyside Park

Filed under: circus skills, Community, Visual arts — alltheskills @ 5:12 pm

There is a saying that “the sun shines on the righteous” and shine it did on Sunnyside Park this weekend….

Tiger Carving in Sunnyside Park

This weekend All The Skills returned to Sunnyside Park, Great Lever, Bolton to be part of the annual community fun day. However, this year was extra special as the park has also secured funding to produce a wild flower garden and at the day there was live wood carving resulting in a fantastic tiger sculpture. The tiger was designed by local children and will be a focal point of the garden.

Kate hard at work with local children making flower

To celebrate the new flower garden Kate worked with local children to produce several large decorative flowers to be hung in the garden as well as individual sparkly/glittery  flowers to take home.

a beautiful flower ready to be displayed

Sean and Naomi were kept busy helping residents young and old to master a variety of circus skills before sending everyone home with a balloon animal.

Let’s hope that despite Council cutbacks this event will continue to happen. As organiser Donnette Foster says,

“These days are all about getting the community out on the park having fun together…”

August 5, 2010

Crosland Moor Allstars Fun day

Filed under: african drumming, circus skills, Community, Visual arts — alltheskills @ 1:20 pm

Maggie from The Lawrence Batley Theatre taking part in the circus workshop

All The Skills have previously worked with The Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield on several occassions bringing circus skills, visual art and dance to different groups.

Last Sunday the LBT invited All The Skills to run a circus workshop in their “Imagine Tent” as part of the activities at Crosland Moor Allstars Fun day. Participants had a go at plate spinning, diabolos, flower stick, juggling, poi spinning and making their own balloon animals.

As our workshop was only an hour long Sean and Naomi decided to make the most of the other activities available…a rare treat when usually we are working all day at these kind of events. Sean had an ice cream (proper ice cream not that stuff pumped through a machine!) and Naomi had her face painted!

It was also a chance to meet up with a few old friends…the Sound Jata West African drummers who we worked with on the Fire in the Sky event and Kate Woodfield visual artist extraordinaire. Kate will be back with us in a few weeks at Sunnyside Park in Great Lever.

SoundJata African drummers

Naomi getting into character after having her face painted

July 20, 2010

Tonge Carnival 2010

Filed under: Chinese, circus skills, Community, Lion Dance, Stilts, Walkabout — alltheskills @ 12:34 am

All The Skills always finds the people of Bolton to be welcoming and we were pleased that the people attending Tonge Carnival enjoyed meeting Terrance the Chinese lion.

Terrance and his musicians made their Bolton debut in a parade to start the event. Also in the parade representing All The Skills was Naomi, on stilts handing out fortune cookies and continuing the Chinese theme, Sean with his diabolos. The parade had many people from different community groups and schools in the Tonge area and was so much fun that it followed the parade route twice!

After a circus workshop session, Naomi took to her stilts again to assist Terrance, Buddha and the musicians in a short performance at the main stage.  Following the performance Naomi and Sean went into a frenzy of balloon modelling until the end of the wonderful event.

Naomi offers Terrance a lettuce

Terrance takes the lettuce

Terrance takes the lettuce

Terrance decides to share it with the crowd

Terrance decides to share the lucky lettuce with the crowd

July 19, 2010

Streetdance at Oldfield Brow

Filed under: Uncategorized — alltheskills @ 8:50 pm
Dance group posing for the camera

Over the past 5 weeks a small and select group of pupils from Oldfield Brow Primary School have been working with professional dancer and choreographer Paul Clarke to learn new style Streetdance and create a routine.

The young people were aged between 6 to 10 years old and had previously attended the drama club at the school where they have recently performed a Shakespeare showcase and had a circus skills workshop.

Streetdance was something new for most of the members of the group and during the 5 weeks they learnt how to warm up safely, improve their co-ordination and work as a team to perform a routine with complex timings.

Parents came to watch the performance at the end of the 5 week course and were impressed with what the children had learnt in such a short amount of time.

Paul teaches regularly for All The Skills and his dance credits include Top of the Pops, Nickelodeon and CD UK. He has also appeared in music videos and worked professionally as a model.

Warming up n getting ready to dance

Smile doesn't hurt!

The routine begins!!!

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