Monday 17 August 2015

Made In Sheffield: Theatre Deli, Sheffield

Tucked away in the old Woolworths building is this little gem of a cafe, the Moor Deli or Theatre Delicatessen to give it it's full name.  This building feels far more than just a cafe. it feels like a community hub.   It's just soo relaxed,  no airs and graces, and no feeling like you have to go the minute you've finished. ....totally my sort of cafe.   And while it's pouring with rain outside where best to sit in the warm with some Lemon and Ginger Ice Cream?

Children are more than welcome, not only is there is a ping pong table and a pile of games you can play if you wanted to wile away a wet afternoon but you are actively encouraged to draw on the (chalkboard) tables!!  I want chalkboard tables at home!!!  ............ ok so mummy may have had more fun here than the kids did!!

The Theatre Deli team have already had great success in London and when they found this building they could see it's potential with it's "atmosphere, [with] secret corners and dark rooms".

Take a look deeper into those corners and you'll find that Moor Deli is far more than just a cafe, in fact that's just a tiny splinter.  The space was opened as to display their flagship artist development programme, Theatre Souk.  The building was kitted out perfectly for this Halloween performance.  Following on from this there have been more performances on various themes, they have commissioned 9 new and emerging local theatre and circus companies to make some unique pieces involving this fantastic 3 storey space.

There are 3 strands to the Theatre Deli's work, all aimed at supporting the local community and artists.

In addition to commissioning new theatre pieces new and emerging resident artists are given unlimited free use of their spaces to develop, rehearse and perform new work.    They are also able to provide mentoring, workshops and training.  There are also opportunities for them to support their artistic careers by working in the bar and café.

Non-resident artists are still able to hire the spaces at a low cost or use the free developmental spaces.  They work alongside Sheffield and Hallam universities and their drama courses.  

Theatre Deli likes to work in the community partnering with specific charities, groups and disadvantaged or hard to reach audiences to provide community members with opportunities to make art.

Mondays:  They are working with help the aged and other charities for older people to set up a weekly arts meet to take place across the ground floor, including arts activities from painting to circus, tea and cake and social time.
Tuesdays:  Crisis use the space to have a day long workshop for homeless people in Sheffield
Wednesday/ Weekday Evenings are great for young people with graffiti and performance sessions.
Thursday – Saturday 10am – 4pm brings you the Arts Café.   This hosts weekly resident artists from various disciplines, who will make their art in the café so that users can either observe the process, or participate

This is what was happening around us while we were there...........

(video courtesy of Theatre Deli)

Theatre Delicatessen is run by one paid part-time staff member and a group of 20 volunteers with support from 2 members of the London staff team.

It is well worth a trip to next time you are in town, the drinks are a good price and with Our Cow Molly Ice Cream at £2.50 a tub a great place to wind down in for an hour or so.


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