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Founder & Artistic Director
Sue is an actress, singer, musical director and singing teacher with over 20 years experience in the performing and coaching industries. She has performed in over 25 countries, at the National Theatre, The Royal Albert Hall, London's West End and in UK tours.
She runs her own singing teaching practice and also teaches on the BA course at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.
Sue founded Christmas for Kids in 2009 and is thrilled with the charity's expansion into Embracing Arts.
Producer and Artistic Director
Claire graduated from the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA). She is an actor, singer, freelance drama facilitator and one of the founding members of Christmas For Kids. She has toured theatres all over the UK, and has performed in the West End and New York.
As a freelance drama facilitator, Claire works with children aged 2-18 yrs teaching curriculum-based subjects and encouraging children to learn and explore through the medium of drama. She has over 15 years of teaching experience and working with children who have Special Educational Needs.
Katie trained at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts.
She has worked in Theatre, Film and television for over 15 years, appearing in West End Plays and Musicals, The London Film Festival and Prime Time Sunday nights on ITV. She currently spends most of her acting time in the studio recording radio dramas for audiences in the USA.
Katie is so proud to be an integral part of the Embracing Arts team!
Gareth is an actor and graduate of the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. He has over 7 years experience as a freelance theatre workshop leader and facilitator, and worked for with special needs children as a teaching assistant for several years.
He is co- founder and Artistic Director of Bard Busters, who specialise in making the works of Shakespeare fun and accessible for children.
Gareth recently worked on 'The Comedy About A Bank Robbery,' in London's West End, for Olivier Award winning company Mischief Theatre.
Fundraising Co-ordinator/Education Consultant
Caitlin is an actor, director and physical theatre performer. After graduating from Oxford University, she swapped a literary life for the limelight, training with Fourth Monkey Theatre Company.
Alongside her work in theatre, Caitlin is an education consultant, delivering workshops and professional learning to primary school pupils and teachers with a particular focus on creative digital.
Caitlin was part of the Christmas for Kids hospice tour in 2016 and is delighted to be part of the Embracing Arts team!
Social Media Co-ordinator
Matthew first joined Christmas for Kids back in 2017, after graduating from the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts. His first tour for C4K was with our production 'Benson’s Christmas Letter'. He loved the job so much that he has been involved in several Christmas for Kids productions since!
Matthew’s roles have continued to adapt over the years, as our charity has expanded. From performer to choreographer, and most recently to social-media co-ordinator! He is currently studying Makaton to explore how this language can make our shows that more accessible to all, as well as continuing to be our media manager for all things Embracing Arts and Christmas for Kids.
Emma's writing and adaptation work for stage includes: 'The Snow Child' (Tutti Frutti), adaptations of 'Hetty Feather' (Olivier Award nomination, West End and touring), 'The Worst Witch' (West End and tour), 'Cool Hand Luke' (West End and Off-Broadway), 'Carrie's War' (West End and tour), 'Anne of Green Gables' (Lilian Baylis), 'Little Women' (West End).
TV work includes 'Eve' (co-creator and lead writer), 'Hetty Feather', 'The Story of Tracy Beaker', 'Tracy Beaker Returns', 'The Dumping Ground', 'Doctors', 'Belonging', 'Dead Gorgeous', 'Sadie J', 'Young Dracula', 'Chuggington', 'The Murder of Princess Diana'.
Radio includes 'Leaving This Land', 'On The Cusp' and 'Clinging to Lord Nelson' (Radio 4), 'Something for Nothing' (BBC Radio Wales).
Set & Props Designer
Simon was born and raised in Worcester and trained at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA). As an actor, Simon has worked on national and international tours, regional theatre, London's West End and in television.
Art credits: Scenery and props for Christmas for Kids, props, puppets and poster art for Ripley Theatre Productions; 'The Little Tempest' (Edinburgh festival), 'Rumpelstiltskin', 'Jack and the Beans...talk!' (Brighton festival), set and puppets for Zara Nunn's short film 'Don't Look Behind You' and, most recently, fabrication of Macbeth's head for 'Macbeth' Epstein theatre, Liverpool.
Simon's website is: www.siromakes.com
Philippa has experience in fundraising and events, and comes from a performing arts background working with children. Her recent work for the charity has been centred on researching funding options from both formal bodies such as trusts and the commercial sector. She has gone on to discover how many commercial businesses have such a practical commitment to community partnerships… it’s a new world! Philippa is proud to play a part in contributing to the work Embracing Arts do and watching the charity grow is such a pleasure!!
Maria is a performer, a keen adventurer, a general optimist, an eco-warrior and most of all, a lover of the arts, who also wants to have a positive impact on lives of other people. She has been working with Embracing Arts since summer 2020, involved with admin, outreach and fundraising - working behind the scenes to get our fabulous Christmas for Kids shows seen by as many people as possible. Maria is thrilled to be a part of the team, knowing we’ve been able to bring festive joy to so many children and families who really need it!
Fiona joined the Embracing Arts team in 2021.
Fiona spent fifteen years working in education, in both primary and secondary schools. She holds the National Award for SEN Coordination and has been a special educational needs coordinator in both mainstream and specialist schools, as well as working independently as an SEN assessor and consultant. Supporting the work of Embracing Arts in creating inclusive and accessible art and productions for children with complex needs is a cause close to her heart.
Fiona supports Embracing Arts with administration work including research, social media and planning.
"We cannot stress how important the effect of what you do is for the hospices, not just the children who need the service, but the families and the carers who work there. They all really loved it and the feedback from the families was very positive. All age groups who attended were fully engaged in the whole show. It was fantastic! I felt that for the children that use our service it was very uplifting." Senior Carer, Shooting Star Chase