My Time with Tees Valley Arts, so far…

My name is Ebenezer Ajibade and I’m taking a work placement at Tees Valley Arts. I am currently studying A Levels at Middlesbrough college and during my free hours on a Tuesday morning I come to Tees Valley Arts to make a contribution to the great work they already do. I take an interest in performing as a dancer and musician and when I heard about the organisation where I met Ree Collins at a careers speed dating event, I decided to help out to find out more and give me some experience outside my main career choice.

It has been a couple of months into my work experience so far and I have taken an insight into the history of the organisation. I was amazed at the fact that TVA has been running for over 30 years. I came to TVA for work experience, however what the organisation does was not what I had expected at first; I thought they were an organisation that focused on performing arts: music, drama, dance and I would be in a studio setting with music rooms (although they do have a music studio you can move around in), and a big area for dance and drama. I was intrigued by what the organisation does, as quoted from TVA site – ‘We design and manage bespoke creative activities which are delivered by freelance artists using many different art forms’. The staff work in an office setting which came surprising to me as when I think of arts I think of the paintings, singers, dancers. Here I see it as ‘behind the scenes’ of the arts.

Since I’ve been at TVA, I’ve worked alongside the office co-ordinator Peter Neal. I have helped with providing tickets to the people who attended the recent Words n Dub event with performances from poet Benjamin Zephaniah, and Dennis Bovell and his Dub Band, using new softwares and programmes, some I have not seen before and some I have not used before, it was nice to gain this experience as it may not be the last time I come across these softwares and programmes. I am a fan of Benjamin Zephaniah and enjoy reading his poetry however I could not make it to the event and when I was asked to help with the blog post it was disappointing seeing the pictures as it looked like an amazing night. Helping with the blog post also gave me an insight into the work gone into making professional online pages for example the changes made to images so they can be seen on as many internet softwares as possible.

My time at Tees Valley Arts has been interesting and I thank Rowena, Ree, and Peter with the experience offered, I hope to achieve more at my time here and gain more experience from the what I learn here as well as knowing more about the organisation.

I have interest in music and dance. I am a rapper mainly focusing on the hip hop/ rap genre, but have started to take more of an interest in street dance. I perform in a duo – our stage name is The EnD!