PSYCHEdelight is a participatory theatre company of Sanctuary founded in 2011 by Sophie NL Besse, a playwright and theatre director trained in both drama and therapy.
We create shows to engage those least involved in arts, giving them a platform to express themselves and be heard. We worked with diverse minorities such as women ex offenders and, more recently, people who had to flee their homes to seek refuge in the UK. We support their integration in the local community by creating shows that will involve a mixed cast of refugee and Uk based people. We have created a unique theatre ensemble composed of 16 performers: Borderline.
Alongside our shows, we also produce outreach theatre workshops nationally and internationally. Our "Together workshops" welcome people from all backgrounds and cultures in an aim to bring communities together.
They are supported by Theatre Delicatessen and St Ethelburga's centre for reconciliation and peace.
PSYCHEdelight was artists in residence with Counterpoints Arts for 2018 and was shortlisted for the community Integration award.
"The work of PSYCHEdelight is smart, nuanced and important. They create work that shines with authenticity, that does all the great things theatre should do - Entertain, move, provoke and motivate." Theatre Delicatessen. Roland Smith
"PSYCHEdelight is one of the leading creators of theatre with refugees, exploring new ways to embed genuine participation that can lead to professional performance and artistic development." Counterpoints Arts. Tom Green
Artistic Director: Sophie Besse
Executive Director: Julie Vallortigara
Producer: Rebecca Hayes Laughton
Assistant Producer: Baraa Halabieh
Community outreach: Debby Karem
Tour Producer: Emilie Labourey
Photography: Jose Farinha
These workshops are a place for people from diverse backgrounds and origins to meet and have fun together. They are are bimonthly on Sundays at Theatre Delicatessen who support our initiative. They are free and everyone is welcome!
Thanks to our partner, Imprology, an improvisation company led by Remy Bertrand, who offers free training for refugees and asylum seekers coming from the Together Workshops, we now have the opportunity to provide another platform for further expression, integration and acting training.
Since we created Borderline, we also became a training theatre company where big productions come to find skilful performers with refugee background. We are proud to have supported the artistic development of very talented artists who, after Borderline, where given the opportunity to work with the Young Vic, The National Theatre and the Globe Theatre.
Other labs and workshops
We give workshops in various contexts
- Room To Heal. A charity supporting victims of torture. Weekly workshops.
- Refugee Camps: Calais + Mardin (Turkey). Provide a place for expression and help bring diverse communities together.
- Kings College on a series of workshops in their language department. We offered in particular some "supervision through theatre" workshops for interpreters working in the public service. Kings College contacted us after the Grenfell tower tragedy and the impact it had had on the interpreters who translated for the local population. These workshop are called "See how it feels" and are ran by Sophie Besse and by Jose Farinha, our photographer.