Holly Stoppit

Directing, facilitating and mentoring

Holly’s directing approach is playful, organic and responsive, joyfully opening to, and playing with, whatever’s in the room. Holly’s devising alchemy is rooted in both practicality and magic, and centres around creating and maintaining a safe environment; full of trust, permission, curiosity and support. In this fertile space, theatre artists find themselves taking great creative risks and discovering new skills, connections, pleasure and insight which can be processed into theatrical material to be performed, or pave the way for further creative discoveries to be made. Holly is dedicated to making space for the mystery of creativity to unfold.

Holly’s dramatherapy skills allow her to take performers through very deep exploratory process, which can be vital when creating autobiographical work, and also prove valuable to any creative team wishing to work through psychological / interpersonal blocks. Holly’s fascination with the magic and mystery of creative process, combined with her deep knowledge of how to work with fear and remove perceived limitations, plus regular support from a clinical supervisor, make her a fearless creative adventurer in a rehearsal room. She believes the creative gold is often just on the other side of the block and can provide many ways to help people move through their perceived limitations into a more expansive and limitless space.

Throughout the devising process, Holly is constantly considering the audience's experience, making sure the end result is original, accessible, satisfying and full of surprises. Holly has a particular taste for improvisation and direct, responsive audience connection and enjoys finding ways to keep at least some of every show she works on open to the moment, ensuring each audience has a uniquely memorable experience.

Holly prefers to work with people who have completed at least one of her workshops as you will have had a taste of her style of working and will know what you're letting yourself in for! If you haven't done a Holly workshop and its not possible to attend one before your project begins, then we will arrange some pre-project discussion time in person or on Zoom.

Holly is often invited in as a Fire Starter at the beginning of R&D or to kick off devising processes. Holly offers a 2-5 day process to help you connect with yourself, the other creatives in your team and your themes, through mindfulness, play and reflection. You can book Holly to do one of her off-the-peg workshops or commission her to provide a bespoke workshop for your company, choosing from Holly's huge toolkit of theatrical and therapeutic knowledge

Holly is also available for mentoring artists, facilitators and directors through the Creative Consultancies.

Holly's current interests include:

  • Work that explores mental health and/or the human condition
  • Safety and boundaries in the rehearsal room
  • Cultivating sustainability in the arts
  • Access and inclusivity for artists and audiences
  • Autobiographical performance 
  • Working with artists who are interested in embracing vulnerability
  • Performance that genuinely interacts with its audience
  • Improvised / semi-improvised performance
  • Performance for non-theatre spaces
  • Small-scale touring performance
  • Online / digital performance
  • Cross-art-form collaborations
  • Integrating live music into performance
  • Discovering unique ways to tell stories
  • Finding creative ways to collect audience feedback
  • Developing workshops that go alongside live performances

For a list of Holly's previous clients, click here.

To have a peek inside Holly's creative toolkit, click here.

"Working with Holly is a vital part of creating my solo shows. Her ability to create a safe space for me to take risks and her encouragement to go beyond unhelpful restrictions has made my work so much richer. Working with her is a creative challenge and an absolute pleasure." Solo theatre maker, Ed Rapley

See also creative consultancy for individual artists and theatre companies

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