Creative connections at Salisbury

THE arts charity Wiltshire Creative, which includes Salisbury Playhouse, Salisbury Arts Centre and Salisbury International Arts Festival, has launched a free online programme of work to entertain and inspire during the current Covid-19 lockdown. Wiltshire Creative Connects offers a mix of interviews and behind-the-scenes films, family activities and support for local artists.

Artistic director Gareth Machin says: “Even though Salisbury Playhouse and Salisbury Arts Centre are currently closed and the 2020 Salisbury International Arts Festival has been cancelled, we know that culture has a vital part to play in these uncertain times, offering entertainment, perspective and inspiration.

“While we are busy planning for when we can welcome everyone back to our venues, we want to stay connected with our loyal community of audiences, participants and local artists, as well as engage with those at home who may discover us for the first time.”

Events include Artist of the Week, profiling some of the artists who either live locally or work regularly with Wiltshire Creative. This will begin with a portrait of Mirka Golden-Hann, ceramic artist and Wiltshire Creative’s head of visual arts.

The Big Interview will be a conversation with people who have worked with Wiltshire Creative, on stage or behind the scenes. The first guest will be Chris Chibnall, writer of the hit comedy Worst Wedding Ever. In conversation with Gareth Machin, Chris will discuss how he came up with the idea for the play and how it became one of the Playhouse’s most popular productions. Chris’s television work includes creating Broadchurch; he is currently head writer and executive producer of Doctor Who.

Other features include the history of the Playhouse, the arts centre and the festival, and the first two years of Wiltshire Creative, with interviews, short films and photo galleries.

Activities from the Take Part department will include regular smARTies fun for under-fives and their families and Mind the Gap Connects, offering creative challenges for older people.

What to Watch will be a regular weekend feature where a different member of the Wiltshire Creative team will recommend the best full-length theatre, performance and art available to enjoy online.

Finally, the Looking Ahead strand will preview some of the exciting productions currently in development, preparing for when the venues can re-open and offer live entertainment once again.

Ideas for other content for Wiltshire Creative Connects can be sent to – and to see what’s on offer now, visit