Guest Speaker: Melanie Kidd

By Dunedin UNESCO City of Literature | Posted: Thursday October 5, 2017

Creative Cities Southern Hui warmly welcomes MELANIE KIDD from Norwich UNESCO City of Literature. Melanie will be speaking at Creative Connections on Thursday 30th November.

'I believe the purpose of creativity is to tell our stories through any means possible and impossible. Absorbing other people’s stories, and witnessing their creativity, makes me feel moved, inspired, frustrated, hurt, embraced, loved...... In short, it makes me feel alive.'

Melanie is a creative project developer, workshop leader and traveller, with a strong interest in the connections between creativity and wellbeing.

Melanie has previously worked for Writers’ Centre Norwich (WCN), the literature development body who led the bid for Norwich to become England’s first UNESCO City of Literature. She managed two of WCN’s key community-driven projects; SPACE a volunteer-led creative writing project, working with university students to develop outreach creative writing programmes for young people; Brave New Reads, a reader development project, designed to embrace reading as a creative activity, working with 18 libraries and 120 avid readers.

Melanie has had a strong involvement in youth-led engagement and talent development projects. Previously working for The Garage, young people’s creative arts venue, she headed numerous outreach projects, enabling young people to access dance, theatre, music and art activities in schools, youth clubs, sports facilities and public spaces.

In 2014 she submitted a successful application to Arts Council England to deliver a 6 month project titled DEBUT, providing mentoring for talented young writers, and platforms to showcase and celebrate their creativity.

Through her work Melanie has developed workshops, programmes and events for young people and adults. In 2015 she designed confidence building workshops for WCN’s Young Ambassador and Cultural Leader schemes. She is a trained Arts Award advisor, and believes in the power of independent learning and importance of creative development.

Her interest in cultural and creative connections inspires her ambition to work and travel around the world. In January 2016 she accompanied three writers on a 5-day research and development trip to Kolkata, as part of the RE:Imagine India partnership project.

She is currently living in Dunedin, and is the coordinator for the Creative Cities Southern Hui.

'I am so lucky to be part of the Hui's creation and growth. Working in Dunedin has enabled me to see how another small, but literary powerful city, embraces its UNESCO City of Literature status, as well as celebrating ALL of its creative integrity and output with full force! I am looking forward to absorbing all of the views and voices, sharing my experiences of the Creative Cities Network and taking away future project ideas.'

Read about Melanie’s trip to Kolkata here

Image 1 and 4 by Martin Figura, Writers' Centre Norwich.
Image 2 and 3 by Melanie Kidd.

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