BearFace Theatre CIC have designed and delivered a new applied theatre intervention in HMP/YOI Winchester. The programme uses drama to positively affect prisoners’ attitudes, thinking and behaviour. Hampshire Cultural Trust coordinated and fundraised for the project, which is being researched by the Department of Criminology at the University of Winchester.

In Spring 2019 prisoners from HMP Winchester devised and shared Saving Face, a short, powerful piece of theatre inspired by their life experiences. Made over ten weeks, Saving Face was co-created by all participants in the group and holds the voices and experiences of ten men, most of whom had never previously used theatre as a tool for expression.

"I have never in my life felt so valued, this has been a life-changing experience. It’s amazing people actually saw our performance and liked it so much."

Prisoner, Spring programme

Recruitment is underway in HMP/YOI Winchester for a Summer 2019 programme.

Our initial pilot project was delivered in summer 2018 and you can read the report here, which has been published on the Arts Alliance Evidence Library which hosts key research and evaluation documents on the impact of arts-based projects, programmes and interventions within the Criminal Justice System. 

  • Saving Face
  • HMP Winchester
  • Saving Face