Friday 13th: Art SOAK Day 2!

We’re excited for the second evening of Art SOAK activity today, kicking off with some Storytime in Selly Oak Library at 4pm and then moving on to Druids Heath where we will see the launch of our film made by local residents that celebrates their area.



At the launch there will be a Photo Booth run by Play More, come and dress up and play with our silly props for a funny photo or join in with a stop motion animation workshop run by Reel Access. Suitable for all the family and totally free 6.30 – 8pm.

The film is the culmination of the Connecting Communities project we have been running in Druids Heath so come and see the fantastic work created by our participants.



Today we are feeling crafty….

As we head deep into Art SOAK, we’re also thinking of emerging on the other side. Sunday morning, all relaxed, a nice big cup of coffee & slab of cake and what more would you want to do but get a needle and thread and make something beautiful to wear in the summer?

So we welcome The Socials to Art SOAK for the first time. Kate Sullivan will be leading two workshops at 11.30 and 12.30pm at Creative Coffee Hub on Raddlebarn Road (the first time we’ve ventured into this venue and would like to thank Tamara for being so welcoming!).

Tickets are £4.50 for one project and you can add projects on the day if you want to make more – the choice is pin cushion, brooch or 50s inspired pinwheel hair clip. Suitable for 7+ or younger children if you will be working together.

Book via

Sunday 11.30am

Sunday 12.30pm

Photo Walk by Pete Ashton

Join local resident Pete Ashton on Saturday 14 May at 12noon, armed with your smartphone or camera, to take a look through the lens at your local area.

Pete will be using the cycle path along the River Rea as the spine of his walk, finding spots to explore including Loaf’s foraging spot, the Tesco building site (currently looks like pyramids), the foot tunnel under the railway and the Lifford Reservoir. Lots of great photo opportunities!

Meet Pete outside The Highbury Pub, 12noon.  £5 tickets can be booked now on


Map here:

Pilot Nights at Stirchley Baths May 12th 7.30pm

The line up has now been announced for the Pilot Nights this Thursday at Stirchley Baths and it is shaping up to be a great night – with some funny acts so come and see some great theatre on your doorstep.

Acts will be:

  • Major Labia – Major Labia
  • Sebastian H.W. – Chokolatl
  • Nathan Birkinshaw – Kayne West
  • Susie Sillett – The Cost of Money
  • Sinéad Brady – What would Milandra do?

See these new ideas from some of the UK’s most exciting theatre makers, and stick around afterwards for music and drinks and to meet the artists and let them know what you thought.

Keep an eye on our Facebook Page and Twitter for more information about the artists and the pieces they will be presenting in May!

Tickets are now on sale and you can book them here:

Change Kitchen at Stirchley Baths – Pre Theatre Dinner & Canapés 

ChangeKitchen will be serving pre-theatre dinner, including a special offer 2 course meal
wth a glass of wine for £12.  There will be canapés in the interval – £5 for a plate of canapés or £8 canapés & a glass of wine .

We will be serving wine, beer, prosecco after the show too.

Booking advised for pre theatre menu –

About Pilot Nights:

PILOT Nights provide a space where theatre-makers can develop their work and try out new ideas in front of a lively and supportive crowd; the pieces presented are all works-in-progress.
PILOT Nights has been running for over 10 years and remains an important part of the creative landscape for the independent theatre sector. Open to artists from across the UK, PILOT Nights take place in venues across the West Midlands.

The Co-Pilot:

Birmingham based arts collective, Play More, create subversive, playful and humorous experiences in non-theatre spaces to encourage people to get involved and play .more. They have delivered work in factories, pubs, city squares and music festivals with previous partners including the mac, Birmingham Hippodrome and Birmingham University. They like immersive and exploratory performance, working in unusual spaces and exploring the space between performance, spectacle and game

The Venue:
Stirchley Baths is a newly opened community hub in restored Edwardian Swimming baths.

ART SOAK 12-15 May 2016

“Reminded us of the Edinburgh Fringe…” Audience member, Art SOAK 2014

We are delighted to announce the programme for this year’s Art SOAK.  We’re opening with a bang in the shiny new Stirchley Baths with Pilot Nights – an evening of new work by theatre makers from across the country.  It promises to be fun! We have a host of walks created by some of the City’s leading ‘walk creators’, high quality workshops by experienced artists & companies, the launch of a new film by Reel Access, storytelling and the Birmingham debut of ‘Helen’s Story’ created and performed by Francesca Millican-Slater.  Join us & enjoy some arts on your doorstep.

“Great range of events – fab to attend at a local site.” Audience member, Art SOAK 2014

Art SOAK Programme FINAL


Arts Forum Selly Oak are delighted to be able to bring you FOLK at the recently opened Stirchley Baths on Wednesday 16th March 2016 @ 7.30pm– come and see some high quality theatre on your doorstep!

A hilarious and not-so-holy story of hope, coming together and finding your feet when your world is turned upside down.

Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Hull Truck Theatre and Watford Palace Theatre present


By Tom Wells

Box Office:  Tickets: £5 or £3 concessions

Folk - imageWinnie’s no ordinary nun. A swearing, smoking, Guinness fan, who loves a sing-song with Stephen. She lives life to the fullest. But she’s got a secret.

Stephen’s lost his job – and lost his way. Finding solace in music, he knows he must start again… but how?

Ballsy and outspoken, teenager Kayleigh is in charge of her life. No one tells her what to do. However, when unexpected circumstances lead her to Winnie and Stephen, they start a journey that will transform their lives forever.

Surprising and poignant, Folk is a hilarious and not-so-holy story of hope, coming together and finding your feet when your world is turned upside down.

Folk is recommended for ages 14+


Patrick Bridgman Stephen
Chloe Harris Kayleigh
Connie Walker Winnie


Tessa Walker Director
Bob Bailey Designer
Simon Bond Lighting Designer
James Frewer Composer and Musical Director
Clive Meldrum Sound Designer
Jo Gleave Assistant Director (Recipient of a JMK regional assistant director bursary)



Advance With Feathers

Stirchley Baths invites you to take part in an exciting new sound art project.
A Stirchley based art organisation called The Centre Of Curious Sonic Investigation, led by artist Justin Wiggan, is working with Stirchley Baths to create a new artwork using sound, based around the themes of hope, transition and future and using the history and restoration of the baths as a starting point.

Community workshops
4th 11th 18th 25th February – drop in between 10am – 2pm

Come along and help us create a new sound artwork for Stirchley, no experience needed! All welcome. Your contributions will result in a unique performance event at the baths.

Performance Event 
Saturday 21 May 7.30pm
£5, booking required via Eventbrite

Experience a unique interactive performance of Advance with Feathers, a new artwork created for Stirchley. The live performance will take place at the newly restored Stirchley Baths, an Edwardian baths restored as a 21st century place for community activity.

6 June – 18 July

Discover the process of the project at an exhibition which documents the exploration of sound with the Stirchley community, St Andrews Healthcare and Cotteridge School.

Get Involved

Like the sound of this project and would like to get involved as a volunteer? Get in touch with Heritage Development Manager Kate Andrews

Project supported by Arts Council England and Heritage Lottery Fund