At Four Wheel Drive, we are dedicated to providing off-road theatrical experiences to the people of York...
To us, off-road theatre is unconventional, creating exciting new work and exploring new possibilities within theatre.
Through this, we prioritise creating opportunities for early career creatives, supporting them on their journey to success.
As one of the four wheels that form the central ethos of our company, CONNECT is all about doing just that - forging a strong, connected creative community in York, and unleashing the creative potential that lies dormant in everyone!
Find out more about Four Wheel Drive and what 'off-road' theatre means to us:
Anna is passionate about creating immersive and inspiring work, engaging audiences in exciting ways. She has spent the past 3 years directing (or reluctantly producing) local shows in York, exploring and uncovering its creative scene. Starting out as an actor, Anna made the transition to directing in her second year of university and has constantly been making theatre and film since. She has a Masters in Directing from the University of York.When asked why she stayed in York after completing her MA in directing she said ‘The vibrance of this city, beyond its immense history and heritage, excites me, I was determined to stay and make my mark.’ Anna is enthralled by supporting others to fulfil their creative potential and wants upcoming creatives to always feel welcome to reach out for a chat.
'I would love to bring together a community of creatives in York; both those who are more established and those who are newer on the scene; we want to allow for an exchange of both experience and ideas.'
Joly is passionate about a theatre-making process of continual personal growth for all involved and pushing the boundaries of possibility. Joly’s passion for producing comes from the ability to 'make things happen', solve problems and create live experiences that are inspiring. A second-year Business of the Creative Industries student at the University of York, he has spent the last year broadening his knowledge, producing local shows in York as well as working on several larger productions in London. Now, Joly is ready to throw himself and his skillset into Four Wheel Drive, where he can support artists in their creative journey as well as producing new, off-road, immersive work that will have a lasting impact on York's Theatre landscape.
'The Success of CONNECT for me is all about opportunity, I want to create as many opportunities for people to learn, exploring their creativity in a low-risk environment and build their network to step up their career.'
Grace is a recent BSc (Hons) Film and TV Production Graduate from the University of York, currently doing a PhD by Creative Practice in the development of compelling immersive narrative techniques that guide the viewer's attention in narrative Cinematic Virtual Reality. She’s also a graduate teaching assistant across a range of film and TV production modules, including leading post-production demonstrations, and assisting in masterclasses on the production of 360 degree content. In recent years she’s worked as a freelancer on various immersive narrative R&D projects, with experience creating pieces in Virtual Reality and Virtual Production. She’s passionate about storytelling in new and emerging mediums, and am looking forward to working with FWD to explore new areas of possibility - including how to utilise VR, AI and innovative tech in theatre, and ultimately across the creative industries.
Hana is passionate about creating safe spaces that allow both artists and audiences to break and overcome the walls of language and culture, and thought it would be a great chance for her to learn and develop through getting involved in the CONNECT project. Before coming to the UK, she studied intercultural communication and collaboration in her undergrad back in Japan, which led to the creation of her first theatre work where she devised a non-verbal show focusing on how different cultures and languages affect/shape our emotions and physicality. She graduated from the University of York in September 2022 where she studied MA in Theatre-Making, and is currently freelancing in York. She is looking forward to connecting with as many local artists and businesses as she can during this project and to delivering an exciting and inclusive place where we can all celebrate together this summer!
Jamie believes that there’s something for everyone in theatre, and is dedicated to spreading the message of entertainment as a transformative force for positive change: creative teams are more than the sum of their parts, and what they can produce can be truly magical. He is a second-year English Literature student at the University of York, and has been involved in the university’s drama and musical theatre (CHMS) societies, as well as Bedfordshire Youth Opera. Though his main focus is performing, he also co-produced CHMS’ Autumn Showcase 2022, as well as writing, directing, front of house and playing in CHMS bands. Having been approached by Joly after a year as Press and Publicity Officer for CHMS, Four Wheel Drive is a chance to extend the skills he learned from the role, moving down a marketing path that’s in equal parts new, challenging and fulfilling! He is most looking forward to helping talented creatives unleash their potential!
Sophie is passionate about nurturing grassroots theatrical talent to create the next generation of thriving performers. She takes a behind-the-scenes role as the CONNECT Marketing Co-ordinator, supporting the marketing team in the lead up to the CONNECT festival on the 19th to 23rd of July 2023. Her job is to showcase on social media the amazing work the local performers are putting in to the festival and get as many people there as possible on the day. She is a second year English and Related Literature student at the University of York who greatly enjoys studying drama in all its forms, and is keen to bring this academic passion to Four Wheel Drive. Going forward, Sophie wants to work closely with the performers and the Four Wheel Drive team to make the CONNECT festival as successful as possible.
Ione is an Event Coordinator at York Conferences & Events, a freelance Event Producer and is also one of the founding members of Foxglove Theatre company. She currently organises quarterly PechaKucha talk events across York in collaboration with York Creatives. She is also currently devising new work with her company Foxglove Theatre which focuses on visual storytelling and dissecting neglected topics. Ione’s core focus is problem solving and thinking far outside the box to ensure creative visions and missions can be met in reality. Having been approached by one of the Four Wheel Drive producers to support the team on festival management and development, Ione was extremely excited (and flattered!) to be involved in a project that has such impressive scope. She is looking forward to working with such a diverse team to bring a unique central vision to life.