BEYOND: Develop

8 February – 30 April 2021
Free online training & wellbeing workshops for Deaf & disabled creatives

Sign-ups for this programme closed on 2 February 2021 at 6pm.

Information in BSL available at the bottom of this page.

Covid-19 has hit every industry, in every corner of our country hard, and the cultural and entertainment sector is no exception. For Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse creatives already on the peripheries, opportunities have fallen further and further from our grasp.

In association with Beyond, launched last year, Graeae are now delighted to announce Beyond: Develop, a series of FREE online CPD (Creative Professional Development) and wellbeing workshops for Deaf and disabled artists affected by the pandemic. Throughout these sessions, we aim to support artists in finding new ways to move forward in the creative industry, while exploring ways to diversify skills and remain resilient.

We are working with some of the best arts facilitators in the country to deliver bespoke sessions, seeking to empower our artists to keep on keeping on, despite the world around us and our industry grinding to a halt. Facilitators include Graeae’s Artistic Director Jenny Sealey MBE, Lesley Ewen, Jo Verrent, Sarah Hughes, Funlola Olufunwa, Graeae’s Associate Director Nickie Miles-Wildin and many more. Watch this space for further announcements in the next few weeks.

A photo of Nickie Miles-Wildin
Nickie Miles-Wildin, Graeae’s Associate Director

Our sessions are open to artists who are Deaf, disabled, Neurodiverse, living with a long term health condition, or who have faced barriers to training due to access requirements not being met. We know that many of those artists will have lost work due to the pandemic and are unsure of what the future holds for both their jobs, access to the arts and their plans for a creative career as a whole. Beyond: Develop is here for you.

Jenny Sealey in Bangladesh for A Different Shakespeare project
Artistic Director, Jenny Sealey

The programme is made up of 12 Creative Professional Development sessions and 12 wellbeing sessions, designed to help tackle the affects the COVID crisis is having on our community. You can sign up to as many as you like, with places allocated on a first come, first served basis.

We recognise the immense value of intersectionality across our communities which includes Black, Asian, ethnic minority and LGBTQIA+ artists. We welcome applications from all corners of our sector. We will endeavour to keep the numbers capped for each session, so that space is made for every voice to be heard and to ensure that all access requirements can be met.

The available sessions are:


  • Funding Applications, Schemes and Platforms. Leading specialists talk platforms including Arts Council England and Unlimited, competition and resilience.
  • Diversifying Your Career: How do we diversify and sell our skills?
  • Creating Solo Work: Finding inspiration, structuring rehearsals, venues in alliance
  • Creating Work Digitally and Working Professionally Online: How can we continue to make creative work from home?  
  • Auditions: Getting Seen and Choosing Material: Self tapes, choosing the right material, knowing your strengths, approaching venues
  • Agents and Self Representation: Researching and contacting agents, knowing your USP, contracts, how to self-represent
  • Arts Administration: Finance, Insurance, Copyright and more: Your project management questions answered
  • Producers and Producing: The Role of a producer, self-producing, the recipe for making work
  • Working in Television: Routes into TV, from supporting artist roles to gaining experience in student film, community casting and stills
  • Access Essentials: access audits & riders, owning your access requirements, the Access to Work scheme, top tips, case studies and your questions answered
  • Inclusive Practice and Creative Access: What do we mean by creative access? Working accessibly in person and online, creatina a working environment
  • Cultural Diversity and Intersectionality in the Arts: Leading creatives discuss BLM movement and the future of diversity in the arts.* 

*Please note: this session is open to people who are ethnically and culturally diverse, who are the global majority, and who have or continue to experience racism in our society.


  • Discrimination Awareness and Knowing Your Rights: Leading specialists talk about discrimination and your rights, with changing goal posts in how we work today
  • Mindful Breathing Part 1: Understanding the warning signs of burning out and finding space for calm
  • Mindful Breathing part 2:  Using breath and meditation to overcome daily stress
  • Best Practice for Self Care Part 1: Working autobiographically, communicating access & recognising burn out
  • Best Practice for Self Care Part 2: What does self-care look like? A fun interactive workshop to soothe.
  • Movement for Wellbeing: How to relieve stress in the body? Yoga & chair yoga, back health
  • Assertiveness and Setting Boundaries: Finding your voice to effectively communicate
  • Laughter: A workshop harnessing the power of laughter
  • Creative Writing for Wellbeing: Using creative writing tools to de-stress and turn internal energy into a positive creative outlet
  • Safe Space Forum – Space to discuss 3 small group sessions with the freedom to discuss anxieties & concerns about work and the world

All sessions will be captioned, and BSL interpreters available. There will be an opportunity to tell about your access requirements when you sign up.

If you need the application form in a different format or require access support to complete this, please contact

Watch the BEYOND: Develop programme in BSL below. 


Beyond: Develop is funded by the National Lottery Community Fund.