About us

Chol: Igniting a creative revolution where every young person feels powerful, valued and connected

We are Chol. A dynamic and socially conscious theatre company and registered charity based in Yorkshire since its founding in 1989. We work with children and young people from early years to early career across Yorkshire and the North, prioritising work in Kirklees, Barnsley and Sheffield. Our approach is entirely collaborative, working in everyday community and educational settings to co-create stories that are rooted in communities and local heritage.  We are committed to nurturing the next generation of creative change makers, supporting children and young people to know and understand that they can be active in making positive change happen in their own lives and in their communities.

The cornerstones of Chol’s work:

-Education: We advocate for care and creativity at the heart of schools to ensure all children and young people have the opportunity to take part in arts-based learning and new experiences.

-Community connection: Inspired and contextualised by the intercultural community we’re part of, we devise projects that tackle inequity. We are dedicated to making the arts accessible to everyone. The Cholavan, our mobile creative vehicle, supports us to reach more people in everyday spaces.

-Partnerships: Collaboration is key to our mission. We seek out and nurture relationships with libraries, museums, schools, arts organisations, community spaces, universities, and Local Cultural Education Partnerships. 

-Innovation & Sector development: We offer alternative pathways to careers in the arts, with a long-term goal of increasing diversity in the sector.  We work as national consultants & regional leaders in arts based training for teachers and artists to share quality practice through evaluation and research.

Our Caring and Creative 10 year strategy aims to put Yorkshire on the map (nationally and internationally) by 2030 for its bold and innovative reimagining of education through creativity and care. We will ensure that the highest quality arts education practices are shared across the region so that more professionals have a deeper understanding and awareness about educational inequity and how to remove barriers to learning.  More creatives and educators will remain or come to Yorkshire to work in this field and join the caring and creative revolution.

The Chol-Operative & Strive

In 2020, we transitioned into the Chol-Operative, our democratic & inclusive company model; we are a woman-led team, working in a flat structure with equal pay. The model was born through a desire to create more accessible through-routes within the organisation with the aim of eliminating the barriers that prevent people from working in senior positions in arts companies. Working in the Chol-Operative is underpinned by our shared drive to understand and challenge inequity in all aspects of the way we run our company and deliver our creative programme. 

We design, deliver and reflect on all of our work through an anti-racist and inclusive approach. We call this initiative Strive. This has evolved to be a crucial element that we embed in our whole programme. Our Strive framework ensures that we constructively interrogate our purpose, vision, values and approach to our work, our company structures, our working culture, policies and approach to recruitment. Strive is the beating heart of our work; it is a journey, not a tickbox.

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