‘What contribution can theatre practice make to the welfare of the community in which it occurs?’

This Timeline (which is a work in progress) charts the development of Entelechy Arts finely interwoven practice over more than a quarter of a century.


1989 Entelechy Arts established (under the name New Moves) with support from Lewisham and North Southwark Health Authority. Artists worked alongside multi-disciplinary health teams to support adults with learning disabilities to move back into their home communities in south east London from exile in the old mental handicap asylums.



An 8 minute film featuring a collaboration between former residents of Darenth Park Hospital and older performers from Rotherhithe Theatre Workshop’s elders performance company ‘Young in Heart’. Created by artists Caroline Allen, Alan Widdowson, Pip Jones and David Slater in collaboration with participants Aggie Harwood, Charles Long, Jon Gardener, Flo Bell, Fred Pugh, Winnie Wheler, Lil Butler, Lil Cook, Derek Hayter, Larry Doyle.



This image shows the very first tiny seed of why our Tea Dances began. It’s a little story based on this man which then became old songs and afternoon tea, and then developed into bigger tea dances in the Albany Theatre, Peckham Pulse and Vietnamese community centre. Learn more about today’s Tea dances here.



A cross generational, science fiction production superimposing the past of Blitz onto the future of information highways and lost pieces of history. Ambient Jam came together with a community from Rotherhithe and Deptford to weave sensory movement, improvisation and dance into a large scale theatre production.



A collaboration between Entelechy Arts Ambient Jam ensemble, dance artist Yolanda Snaithe and musician Charles Hayward. Two performances at the Mulberry Day Centre New Cross combined multi-media Dance, set design and music. This piece was performed to a mixed audience of dance students, artists and choreographers, local learning disabled people, family and care sector staff.



Night flights 2006
A digital installation using paint, wheelchair tracks and large scale film projections made by emerging artist James Mclean. McLean collaborated with Malcolm and Florence Peake and worked with young people with profound and complex disabilities, and artists  at the APT gallery. This was accompanied by a seminar that brought together people from different agencies and organisations to explore the use of digital technology. The outcome was to enable young people with profound disabilities to become more involved in the creative life of their communities.


Big Chair Dance took place across London in July 2008 with a final performance in the Clore Ballroom at Southbank Centre. Under the direction of Cheryl McChesney with Choreographer Maresa von Stockert.



Casa das Fases

This was the beginning of a five year relationship with Brazilian Older People’s theatre company Casa das Fases. The relationship brought together older artists from the south of Brazil and the South of London in a series of creative exchanges leading to ‘A Storm in a Tea Cup’ an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Tempest.


Little Boxes of Memories

Project inspired by methodology developed by Casa das fases.

Stories were collected by artists and older participants working in a residential care home and the stroke unit of Lewisham Hospital. Multi-sensory story telling programme then toured to Special Educational Needs Schools working with young people who have profound and multiple




Barbican Arts works 2014: National multi-sensory training event designed and led by Entelechy’s Ambient jam team for artists working with people with different ways of communicating. Co-led by emerging artist Carol Greenslade.


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