Our Generous Sponsors:

High Chelmer; James Hallam Insurance Brokers; Gepp Solicitors; dpo FOR EDUCATION; BBC Essex; Chelmsford City Council


(These notes relate to 'normal' years 2012-2019 and, hopefully, 2024 onwards)

Set within the City centre of Chelmsford, principally in High Chelmer shopping centre and The Exchange, Showcase allows a free and uniquely accessible opportunity to experience the high quality visual and performing arts from our talented Essex school students. Whilst in central Chelmsford for shopping, business or just lunch, come along and be surprised and impressed.

The Showcase gives the opportunity for students’ work to be put before the public, usually for the first time. Students are also encouraged to attend to host the displays and gain from interacting with the viewing public and experiencing students' work from other schools. The general public gets the opportunity to experience the high quality artwork from Essex students which is normally only displayed at school. There is no fixed format and teachers/students are encouraged to develop ideas for inclusion.

The first eight years included painting, drawing, collage, sculpture, textiles, upholstery, woodwork, photography, design, installation, street theatre, mime, dance, big bands, rock bands, ukulele bands, drama, monologues, choirs, fine art workshops and demonstrations, live artwork creation, temporary sculpture, video and puppetry. For the past three years, thanks to extra support from High Chelmer, we have been able to include a special project suspended installation which allows an extra collaboration between students to create a temporary spectacular artistic display high up in the shopping centre roof spaces. (See 2019 PHYSICAL EVENT page for full description of 2019's installation.)

The event is unfunded, supported entirely by generous in-kind sponsorship from local organisations in Chelmsford and by voluntarily donated time. Our sponsors provide exhibition space, large 'banner' canvas, publicity printing, any necessary equipment and temporary construction work, team support, health & safety, all necessary insurance cover, commemorative school certificates, necessary permissions, radio publicity, etc. The extra effort contributed by staff of the contributing schools at a very busy time of year is greatly appreciated.

Student Work Experience

Arts students gain work experience in curation, exhibition and invigilation in a gallery context, but Showcase also can provide invaluable general life and workplace skills and experience to students. Aside from self-confidence, skills developed include teamwork, interpersonal interaction with the public, initiative and flexibility. Also, specialist experience is available, for example, Business Studies (project management, event planning) and Media (publicity, including local radio experience, planning printed publicity, etc.), performance scheduling and arranging and more.

If you are associated with an Essex senior school, please consider giving your visual and performing arts students the opportunity to show their work in public in central Chelmsford next July and, possibly, see if any senior students would like to get involved with the organising Work Experience of The Essex Schools Showcase for The Arts 2024.

The event dates are always set to run into the last weeks of the academic year to ensure plenty of content to show. The visual displays in normal years are open to the public during shopping hours at High Chelmer (Daily 7:00am - 6:30pm ex Thursday 7:00am - 7:00pm & Sunday 9:30am - 5:00pm) and hosted by students on weekdays between 10:00am and 2:00pm, i.e. within school time.

Please do get in touch to develop future ideas and/or for further information:

email Max Dolding

Schools participating in Showcase 2012-2022

Barnes Farm Junior School, Chelmsford

Becket Keys School

Billericay School

Bishops Stortford High School

Boswells School, Chelmsford

Brentwood County High School

Bromfords School and VI Form College, Wickford

Burnt Mill Academy, Harlow

Castledon School

Castle View School, Canvey Island

Chase High School, Westcliff-on-Sea

Chelmer Valley High School, Chelmsford

Chelmsford College

Chelmsford County High School for Girls

Colchester County High School for Girls

Deanes School (now Academy), Benfleet

Elm Green Preparatory School, Little Baddow

Forest Hall School, Stansted Mountfitchet

Gateway Academy, Tilbury

Great Baddow High School

Greensward Academy, Hockley

Greenways Primary School, Southend-on-Sea

Hylands School, Chelmsford

King Edmund School, Rochford

King Edward VI Grammar School, Chelmsford

Maltings Academy, Witham

Mayflower High School, Billericay

Moulsham High School

New Rickstones Academy, Witham

Notley High School & Braintree VI Form

Plume Community Academy, Maldon

Sandon School

St Marys School for Girls, Colchester

Southend High School for Boys

Tendring Technology College

Thriftwood School & College, Chelmsford

Westcliff High School for Boys

William de Ferrers School

Woodlands School, Basildon