Meet Wolverhampton CEP Steering Group Members:
Ciarán O’Donnell was born in Derry City, Northern Ireland in 1981 and began playing the clarinet and saxophone at the age of ten and eleven respectively. He studied music at Queen’s University, Belfast, where he graduated with first-class honours. He was subsequently awarded a scholarship for further study at Birmingham Conservatoire, where he completed a postgraduate diploma with distinction and was awarded the Conservatoire’s post graduate prize 2003. He joined Birmingham Music Service in 2005 as a woodwind teacher, teaching successfully in a variety of Birmingham Schools.
Ciarán held the post as Head of Woodwind at Birmingham Music Service from 2009. In June 2013, he was awarded honorary membership of Birmingham Conservatoire, for his innovative partnership work in the field of Music Education. Later, in 2014, he was appointed as the Head of Music Service within Services for Education in Birmingham. In 2018 the Service won the Music Education Council Major Award for its pioneering leadership of the Music Education Hub. He is now the Head of Music Service at the City of Wolverhampton Council from September 2018.
Trevelyan Wright is CEO of Newhampton Arts Centre. Before coming to Wolverhampton in 2018 he spent a decade in Stoke-on-Trent working for B Arts and has held senior arts education positions at cultural organisations including Birmingham Rep, The Royal Shakespeare Company, Compton Verney Museum and Art Gallery, and Salisbury Playhouse.
Development Co-ordinator for Wolverhampton CEP and #WvSameDifference youth festival and freelance artist educator specialising in working with young people to enable their voices to be heard.
Pamela Cole-Hudson is CEO and Artistic Director of Gazebo Theatre, where she has worked for 22 years. Gazebo are one of the longest standing Theatre In Education companies still in existence in the UK, and will be joining Arts Council England’s National Portfolio for the first time in April 2023. Gazebo provide a raft of applied and community Arts programmes, creative and cultural industries training, out of school hours activities for children and young people, national professional touring and mentoring support for young people facing significant barriers. Gazebo are an Arts Award and AIM centre, providing registered qualifications.
Prior to her work at Gazebo, Pamela worked as an actor, freelance creative practitioner and established a Youth Arts Charity within her local community in Wolverhampton, in response to the lack of opportunities for children and young people. Pamela has written, directed and produced more than 50 plays and TIE programmes, including “Invasion of the Flingatrons”, “Sweet Tooth”, “Rivers To Cross”, “The Hallowed Turf”, “Jamaica50” and “A Sense of Belonging”. Acting credits include “Wanted” (also co-writer), “The Sistren” and “Echoes”.
Pamela is also Co-Chair of Wolverhampton Voluntary Community Action and sits on the West Midlands Combined Authority Cultural Leadership Board.
Joanna Slater is Curriculum Manager for Creative, Culture and Visitor Economy and Lecturer in Live Sound and Events at City of Wolverhampton College a role allows which allows her to be involved with every element of the sector and ensure that our future generations are encouraged and trained in the right way – all things technical, and how to be successful in the industry!
Having also worked as a Live Sound Engineer in the industry for over 20 years in a variety of settings including large gigs, festivals, musical theatre and corporate events and still actively doing so, very much enjoys the challenge and activity that comes with it. There isn’t a more exciting, thrilling and adrenalin filled environment to work in. Being part of the performance as the performers and directly impacts on the audience and their interpretation of the event, a perfect combination of job roles!
Penelope Thomas is the Learning and Engagement Officer for Wolverhampton Arts and Culture, coordinating lifelong learning programmes across the City of Wolverhampton Council cultural and heritage venues.
Allie Parsons is a young person who was part of the Culture and Diversity youth group who co-created the first WvSameDifference festival in 2022. Since 2022 Allie has continued to work with the CEP on developing the festival further and sits on the CEP steering group. Allie previously sat on Wolverhampton Youth Council and the #YES board and has a range of experience of youth voice work. Allie is currently part of Wolverhampton Music Service hub board, ArtForum Wolverhampton Art Gallery youth group and is passionate about the arts, plays the Violin and creates a range of visual arts too.
Maggie Ayliffe is the Head of Wolverhampton School of Art. She is a painter with research interests in feminist art practice and art school pedagogy. The school of Art provides students on Art, Design and Screen based courses the opportunity to join a practice led community in the heart of the city. In addition to developing the skills and knowledge to become professionals in these fields she hopes they will also engage in the socially engaged and community arts practice that is core to the school’s history and vision. In this sense, she leads a school that recognises both the formal and social values of art to the city and the wider economic and political environment.
The #YES Board is a Youth Commissioning and Inspection Board which consists of young people between the ages of 11 – 18 and up to 25 if they are a care leaver or have any special educational needs or disabilities. This group of young people support to share out large funds amongst providers all across Wolverhampton to ensure that all of our young people across Wolverhampton have the best activities in the holidays to keep young people happy, engaged and their stomachs full.
Amazingly this year they have been able to collaborate with the Wolves CEP and play a big part in this years #WVSameDifference Festival 2023 by sharing ideas, thoughts and opinions to help influence the structure of the event to make it the best for the young people and families who plan to attend this summer!