What Is POUT?!
POUT used to be a cooperative of radical, political theatre-makers when it formed officially in 2008. The POUT acronym stood for Political Operations Under Threat.
The work we did was mainly a satire of government decisions leading up to the Iraq invasion, an exploration of sexuality politics and a social commentary of the mass media with an emphasis on local issues.
We were, and I still am, inspired by the work of companies and individuals that formed British Alternative Theatre Movement, 1968-88. POUT toured work, agit-prop meets Kubrick style, around small alternative venues (pubs basically) of West Yorkshire and beyond, 2009-2011. Then we disbanded. Long story. I basically kept the name and started co-running events with the hope of helping people use the arts as a means of social and personal engagement with important issues - like mental health and communication skills.
Today POUT is basically just me and this website is just a collection of Ideas, Attitudes, Perspectives, Images and Other Phenomena. Though the only one I've had time to develop so far is this one and the blog because I'm currently on a massive trek around the globe. Point being I'm developing loads of pages but you'll get annoyed if you go clicking around elsewhere at the moment!
I've a habit of getting involved in and/or running strange things, events, workshops or just going to them.
Some of the things I cover here (I think) are hard to find out about, like the history of the alternative theatre movement, local and national queer spaces and utilising computer programming/digital technologies in creative ways.
So we'll cover everything from my time spent developing and running arts festival programmes, writing funding bids, sketching, writing poetry and short stories, to collaborating to deliver artist-led development platforms and helping others to do their thing.
For me, its about sharing f*&king good ideas. I've worked voluntarily (occasionally with funding) in the creative sector for over 7 years. I was lured into full-time office work many years ago to fund my work in the development of grassroots performance platforms.
I'm currently working in the shadows trying to get back into writing and producing.