Hoopla! shortlisted for Best Family Arts Activity award

Date published: 9 Oct 2023

Posted by: Joe Pick

We've been shortlisted for... Fantastic For Families * AWARDS * BEST FAMILY ARTS ACTIVITY

City Arts’ mini-festival for 0-4 year olds is one of 24 incredible arts activities shortlisted for the national Fantastic for Families Awards. Each of the shortlisted organisations have made an outstanding contribution to family and age friendly arts and culture in 2022-23.

City Arts worked with families, local service providers, and partner Small Steps Big Changes, to create Hoopla!, an outdoor mini-festival for families with children aged 0-4. The event brought high quality puppetry, performance and art installations to public parks in four deprived Nottingham neighbourhoods. Stalls for local services provided wraparound support for early years’ families.

Mother plays chime instruments with child
Photo by Lamar Francois

Now in its tenth year, the Fantastic for Families Awards is an annual programme open to UK-based cultural organisations or cultural activity organisers, providing creative opportunities, activities, or initiatives for families and older people.

Amidst the current challenges we face in the UK with the cost of living crisis, arts and culture not only offers respite, but brings us together, ignites our imaginations and enriches our lives. The arts sector continues to provide quality family arts experiences in these challenging times, with many dedicated to reaching more families and engaging more diverse communities, particularly the most vulnerable and marginalised.

Theatre performer shows bird puppets to two children
Photo by Lamar Francois

The 2023 shortlist recognises and celebrates the achievements of family arts professionals. Their work supports communities and participants including families, young mothers, isolated elders, and those struggling with mental health and wellbeing.

Now in its tenth year, the Fantastic for Families awards continues to be an amazing opportunity to share and celebrate the brilliant and inspiring work created by the cultural sector. This year’s nominees have all demonstrated how creative and cultural opportunities can make a real difference to families, older people, and the wider community. In particular, the awards demonstrate how the arts sector is crucial to broadening opportunities for vulnerable families and those who are in need.

Anna Dever, Executive Director, Family Arts Campaign

By presenting the work of the shortlisted organisations, Fantastic for Families are sharing 24 stories of family arts. They include creating a space of sanctuary through music, dance and art for refugees and asylum seekers in Manchester; singing and songwriting for people with dementia and their carers in Doncaster; puppetry, performance and art installations outdoors for young families in deprived neighbourhoods of Nottingham, and an interactive multicultural dance performance, fusing the Indian classical dance, Bharatanatyam, with contemporary dance and music, developed in Cambridge.