Why do we exist?
The Critics’ Club is a programme designed to develop within young people a desire to engage with the arts and our cultural spaces.
Sadly, many young people are not exposed to galleries or theatres as children, and therefore do not feel comfortable visiting these spaces independently. They feel that these spaces are not for them and that they do not belong there. This further alienates many from enjoying the personal and educational benefits that engaging with the arts can bring.
Their fear of not fitting in, however, is hardly surprising considering the cultural elitism of the arts world - with most gallery attendees and audience members being white and/or middle class.
Government cuts to the arts, both in and outside of schools, has left them undervalued and underfunded, significantly affecting those young people who are not encouraged nor cannot afford to engage outside of the classroom.