AltererEgo Creative Solutions Ltd are one of the UK’s leading Social Change Theatre & Film production companies. We are a not-for-profit social enterprise that develop and deliver impactive and resonant projects aimed at creating what we call ‘Narrative Alchemy’ – the conscious creation of positive change through story and narrative.
Using our unique Narrative Alchemy style, we work with schools, colleges, charities, community organisations, police forces, government bodies, the NHS, the MoD and private companies to research, cultivate and create theatre & film productions that raise awareness and kickstart conversations around safeguarding, cultural, health, wellbeing and social issues – issues that we think are important to our communities (local or global) and that are important to us as practitioners.
We have projects that cover child sexual exploitation, child criminal exploitation, domestic abuse & coercive control, radicalisation & extremism, hate crime, knife crime, sexism & sexist behaviours, emotional resilience, internet safety, and diversity.
What is Narrative Alchemy?
[noun] a spoken or written account of connected events; a story.’
[noun] the seemingly magical process of creation and transformation
Drama, stories and social change are naturally aligned; and have been for a millennia.
Aristotle, the father of logic, identified the power of drama to promote empathy and understanding in audiences.
More recently research into Narrative Theory has examined how stories have the power to create change. Narrative is a basic human strategy for understanding the fundamental elements of our experience, such as time, process, and change. Or, to put it more simply: stories help people to make sense of the world.
If structured correctly, with rising tension and a clear dramatic arc or a clear ‘Heroes Journey’, and if performed with skill, knowledge and an understanding of their efficacy and power, stories are the most effective way to transmit important information and values from one individual or community to the next.
Neuroscientists have demonstrated that stories that are personal, truthful, and emotionally compelling increase neural activity fivefold, engaging (lighting up) more areas of the brain. This results in stories being better remembered than simply stating a set of facts.
As well as resonating for longer, stories create immediate and impactive emotional stimulation and empathy by triggering the release of the neurochemical oxytocin (often called ‘the Love drug’).
So… Stories make us remember and stories make us care. If, as individuals and as communities, we can remember and we can care, we can hopefully begin to create conscious positive change.
Meet the Team
Gemma Paget, BA (hons), MA, FRSA Associate Creative Director
Gemma has a Masters Degree in Dramatherapy from Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge. Her area of interest lies in how role method and internal family systems can be used to inform the application of dramatherapy interventions with clients who have experienced trauma. Before training as a dramatherapist Gemma trained as an actress at Manchester Metropolitan’s School of Theatre.
Directing credits include:
Unacceptable, Click, Behind Closed Doors, CountyLines, Chelsea’s Story, Going to Extremes, In the Net, ToughLove (AlterEgo).
Performing credits include:
Loaded, She Stoops to Conquer, Much Ado About Nothing, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Stand, Behind Closed Doors (AlterEgo). Gut Girls (Outfox Productions), Othello, Romeo & Juliet, All’s Well That Ends Well, Hamlet, As You Like It (Cambridge Shakespeare Festival), Eight (Henley Fringe Festival), Never Saw the Day (Walking Forward Theatre), Blue Eyed Cat (Etcetera Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Tacit Theatre), Richard III (Bloomsbury Theatre). FILM & TV : The Streets of Narm (Feature), Ford Vignalle (Commercial), The Hunt (Web Series), Bide (Short Film), HP Printers (Commercial), The Ex, the Date & the Lover (Short Film), Last Breath (Music Video), The Three of Us (Short Film), Call Me (Short Film).
Sean McGrath, FRSA Creative Director
Sean trained as an actor at The Oxford School of Drama and accessed training as a director on The Young Vic’s Directors Programme. As well as being Creative Director for AlterEgo he is an associate director for The Cambridge Shakespeare Festival and a fellow of The Royal Society of Arts. His area of interest lies in behavioural and cognitive psychology, narrative theory, trauma informed approaches, Jungian alchemy and how these can be used in the creative project development process, in the rehearsal process and in project delivery.
Directing credits include:
Unacceptable, Invictus, Breaking the Chain, CountyLines, Click, Chelsea’s Story, Going to Extremes, Kourtney’s Choice, In the Net, Enslaved, Working it Out, Missing the Picture, Behind Closed Doors, ToughLove, Beyond the Warzone, Money Matters, She Stoops to Conquer, Stand, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo & Juliet, Macbeth, Meeting Shakespeare, Loaded (AlterEgo), Twelfth Night, The Comedy of Errors, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, As You Like It, Much Ado About Nothing (Cambridge Shakespeare Festival), Robin Hood (University of Northampton 3rd yr BA Acting), Macbeth (BlackCat Theatre), Rated, In the Dark, Smashed (Jackpot Training).
Assistant directing credit include:
Hedda Gabler (Royal & Derngate Theatre, Northampton – 2012 Cultural Olympiad)
Writing credits include:
Unacceptable, Invictus, Breaking the Chain, CountyLines, Crossing the Line, Click, Enslaved, Chelsea’s Story, Going to Extremes, Kourtney’s Choice (US adaptation), Missing the Picture, Behind Closed Doors, In the Net, Crashing, Working it Out, ToughLove, Beyond the Warzone, Money Matters, Meeting Shakespeare (AlterEgo), Rated, In the Dark, Smashed (Jackpot Training).
Performing credits include:
Othello, Hamlet, Much Ado About Nothing, Richard III (Cambridge Shakespeare Festival), Welcome Back (Walking Forward Theatre), To Close & Kill (Theatre 503), An Imperfect Instrument (Arcola Theatre – Scratch), Tamburlaine II (Shakespeare’s Globe – Read not Dead), A Guinea Too Much (Mansfield Palace Theatre), The Tempest (ShakespeareWorks), An Urban Folk Tale (Diorama Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Tacit Theatre).
Lynne Goodwin Office Manager
Marian Allen Finance Administrator