Blue Apple

Blue Apple was co-founded by mother, Jane and and her son Tommy Jessop, a young man with Down Syndrome wanting to perform, but without an appropriate group to join, and so together they set up a single drama workshop to see what appetite there might be. Fifty people attended that event and some of them are still performing with Blue Apple.

Today the company works weekly with around fifty individuals with a range of learning disabilities. Some join in for the social and creative enjoyment it offers, but others want to be taken seriously as artists and have ambitions to become professional.

In a normal year, the main company takes a large production to the stage in the summer and winter. This can mean having thirty-five adults with a learning disability on stage at once – the company works to make sure that (despite obvious challenges) each cast member has a chance to operate at their highest level.  Blue Apple also perform at Heritage Open Days, regularly cooperate with Play to the Crowd (Theatre Royal Winchester and Hat Fair), University of Winchester (in particular D@Win Dance), local learning disability charity GoLD and collaborate on an ad hoc basis collaborations with other organisations, for example with the Philharmonia.

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