Redbrook Art Angels make TV debut

Published: December 7, 2020

Children in Redbook made their television debut this week as their nativity was filmed for BBC News. Just before 7am on Tuesday 8 December, 35 children in two villages, including the infant class of Redbook Church of England Primary School got to appear on BBC News.

“Herod is in lockdown in Chepstow and the wise men’s beards were lost in the post. But like every Nativity we are finding the children tell the story with such colour and convey the contagious excitement of that first Christmas”, says organiser Mari Hutchings.

“After Mac, as shepherd, had run down the field for me three times today, I asked him what’s it like being a shepherd.

“‘It’s a bit tiring’ he said!”

Mari wrote the script for the nativity and lots of local people have got involved. 81 year old Therese Casemore made all the angels’ costumes. People donated sheets for the shepherds, parents sewed on wings and a local farm hosted the production. A local drone enthusiast has also taken some stunning footage from above the angels. The children tie dyed all their own costumes and they look so vibrant against the landscape of early winter.  Ava slept in her angel dress every night when she had finished it.

Three girls have written a song which will be the soundtrack for the film.

The children are all members of the Art Angels group, which started during lockdown and gives free online art classes and provides art materials. The group has been ‘adopted’ by the church and is hoping to raise money to fund a toilet for the church (it doesn’t have one at all) so they can use the building for art classes after lockdown.

11 children are doing stop motion and graphics for the nativity and if lockdown restrictions allow, the group will be screening the film on 23 December, in the village church of Redbook, all day to small groups. They also plan to share it on YouTube.

Mari said, “It’s wonderful to have this to work on and I know the creative process has bought us all together as a community.”

Mark Bick, Local Minister for Redbrook and Pioneer Reader, said, “I am proud of how the approach of Art Angels puts the children in the forefront, telling the story, and that they have gained so much confidence through having  worked on Zoom on various projects through lockdown.”

You can catch up on iPlayer at 52’ 22” into the show.

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