Creative Wellbeing Lab

A Tamasha Programme. Funded by The Baring Foundation. In partnership with Creative Health Camden and King’s College London 

The Creative Wellbeing Lab is a year-long programme, in partnership with Creative Health Camden and King’s College London, focused on the development of Global Majority Practitioners who are keen on using their artistic practice to address ongoing mental health crises. 

Funded by The Baring Foundation, the programme covers the Practitioners’ role in Arts and Wellbeing settings – where participants will engage in practical workshops with industry professionals and group discussions, covering topics such as: Mental Health awareness, Artists / Facilitator wellbeing, working with vulnerable people, and Facilitating / Planning / Funding participatory projects. By the end of this programme, participants will have developed skills as an Artist – Facilitator and have the opportunity to pilot an Arts and Wellbeing project. 

The aims of the Creative Wellbeing Lab are: 

  • to offer career development in a supportive environment to practitioners from culturally diverse backgrounds with an interest in Arts and Wellbeing. 
  • to develop, guide and shape practitioners in the art of using their work in Arts and Health settings by offering hands-on sessions and mentorship with industry professionals.  
  • to support and encourage practitioners to be the creative leads on their own project ideas 
  • to support practitioners with their wellbeing while engage in Arts and Health settings

Scroll down to meet the 2024 practitioners.

Cassie Bradley (she/her)

Cassie is an actor, voice artist and creative practitioner. Cassie founded SPoKE, a social enterprise, to redress the social inequalities that exist surrounding access to public speaking skills, voice work and empowerment training.  

Coming from a working-class background, Cassie is passionate about using art and artistic practice for social change. She’s facilitated workshops and outreach programmes for the National Theatre and National Theatre Learning, pioneered the confidence and public speaking work at Luminary Bakery, works with survivors of trauma and gender-based violence and regularly contributes to articles and panels campaigning for greater opportunities for artists from low socioeconomic backgrounds.  

As an actor: Cassie has worked extensively with the National Theatre, on screen she is known for playing Natalie Watkins in Coronation Street (ITV), Leanne in ITV’s Torvill & Dean, Leigh-Anne Carr in Casualty (BBC) and Mary Magdalene for History & Amazon worldwide. As a voice artist: Cassie has narrated audiobooks for HarperAudio, Amazon and Audible. She is frequently involved in national product campaigns, commercials, video games and BBC Radio projects. She is represented by United Agents and Say So Voices.  

“I’m so excited to be part of this ground-breaking Creative Lab. My work centres around empowering individuals to use their voices, own their unique experiences and stories and speak out. I’m proud to be working with Tamasha, an organisation with a rich history of provocative and powerful storytelling, to deepen my practice and ensure background, class, race, gender, disability and financial means are not silencers or barriers to access, success and imaginative possibilities.” 

Esme Allman (she/her)

Esme Allman is a poet, theatremaker and facilitator based in South East London. Her work explores history, imaginative worlds, and desire within black femininity. She developed her theatre practice in a participatory setting as Participation Associate at the Young Vic (2020-2021), Clean Break (2021-2022) and Cardboard Citizens (2022-2023). She directed Statues by Azan Ahmed at the Barbican’s Pit theatre (March 2022), To The People by John Dinneen and Alex Urwin (April 2022). She assistant directed Sindi-Ella (Brixton House, 2023), Alice in Wonderland (RADA Vanburgh Theatre, 2023) and Run It Back (Hackney Showroom 2018). She has facilitated creative workshops with the Arvon Foundation, the Barbican, Clean Break, Sydenham Arts, Kings Theatre, Fevered Sleep and the Robert Bosch Foundation in Berlin. Esme’s work has appeared at the Barbican, English Heritage and the ICA, BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio 6. She was a Resident Artist at the Roundhouse and where she wrote and performed her one-woman show Delectably Red in June 2022. 

Isaac Ouro-Gnao (he/they)

Isaac Ouro-Gnao is a Togolese-British multidisciplinary artist, somatic trauma therapist, mental health scholar-activist, and freelance journalist. He has trained in hip hop, contemporary, and Africana dance styles since 2008, leading him to work with renowned choreographers and companies including Alessandra Seutin’s Vocab Dance, Far From The Norm, and Punchdrunk. He completed an MSc in Creative Arts and Mental Health in 2022 at Queen Mary University of London, the Integrative Somatic Trauma Therapy programme by The Embody Lab and MHFA England’s Youth Mental Health First Aid training in 2023, and is a member of survivor-led Traumascapes Arts Collective (CAT) where he continues research on how dance, art, and psychology intersect to aid the healing of trauma. Dance credits: Father Figurine, 2018 (Body Politic); Family Honour, 2019 (Spoken Movement); Boy Breaking Glass, 2021 (Alessandra Seutin/Vocab Dance); It Begins In Darkness, 2023 (Seke Chimutengwende); The Burnt City, 2023 (Punchdrunk) Film credits: BOAT, 2018 (Film 4), A Very bR*T*SH Museum, 2022 (Seeta Patel Dance); #BlackBoyJoyGone, 2022 (Panoptical / BFI Doc Society).

Leila Khan (she/her)

Writer, theatre maker, Mental Health Practitioner looking to engage creatively with communities for positive mental wellbeing.

Lydia-Renee Darling (she/her)

Lydia-Renee Darling is a Ghanaian-German actor and producer from Madison, Wisconsin. She is a graduate of Webster Conservatory of Theatre Arts (2020) and The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama (2022), as well as Soho Theatre, Second City, FilmNorth and Theatre503. Alongside her acting work at The Pleasance Theatre and upcoming indie dark comedy by Tanya Moodie, Lydia is the founder of Oh! (My Gosh) Creative Co., the first EDI production company that creates cross-cultural productions between the underrepresented. OMG began providing EDI audience development services to underrepresented demos for theatres such as The Royal Court and expanded to the Underrepresented in Entertainment Support Group, a Somerset House backed membership program that allows us to train and nurture underrepresented talent before, during and after they enter our ensemble. Upcoming events include the Underrepresented in Entertainment Exchange, a hybrid event between BIPOC entertainment professionals in the US and UK and DE and UK. Oh! the Show, an interview podcast for BIPOC in the industry will debut in March 2024, and The Beauty Passport, a docuseries covering the effect of Western beauty standards on the underrepresented is slated for a 2026 launch. 

Rinre Olusola (she/her)

Rinre Olusola graduated from Oxford with a degree in History and English in 2022. She is a writer, performer and producer. Her debut play, Cut, Paste, Enter was performed in Modern Art Oxford in 2021 and she is the founder of Dawn Productions, which most recently went on a National tour with her original play, VESSEL in 2023. She has produced and performed for Oxford’s Offbeat Festival, is on the Youth Forum of Go Live Theatre and is currently training as an actor with the National Youth Theatre. 

Rishi Rian (he/him)

Rishi Rian is an actor, poet, writer, and facilitator whose training includes the National Youth Theatre and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Rishi has worked as a drama and theatre facilitator with organisations such as the NYT, Shakespeare’s Globe, and Diverse Voices, as well as running his own creative writing workshops. His work examines creative imaginary spaces, landscapes (both physical and internal), the small moments that make us feel big emotions, and community. His acting credits include work with Disney+, BBC, and ITV.

Photo: Kawa Headshots

Tasnim Siddiqa Amin (she/they)

Tasnim is a Bangladeshi-British freelance artist from East London working across disciplines in visual art, theatre and writing. Her practice is grounded in anti-racism, postcolonialism and intersectional feminism. Currently she works for Daedalus Theatre Company as Assistant Director / Producer and is a trustee for Icon Theatre in Kent. In 2023, Tasnim attended the Climate and Displacement for Women Artists Retreat at Hawkwood, was successful for the Barbican’s Imagine Fund and completed the Oitijjo Artist Residency where she developed her play The Final Trumpet. Tasnim also shared her new play Knotted as part of A Season of Bangla Drama. Tasnim has more than two years experience as a freelance facilitator and has designed a number of arts programmes for clients such as Coney, A New Direction, Toynbee Hall, LLDC and UCL Institute of Making. Whilst at Birkbeck University Tasnim presented a paper on “Intersectionality in Madness: Three Frames of Oppression” at the Postgraduate Medical Humanities Conference at Exeter University in 2019. Tasnim’s BA dissertation entitled “A feminist critique of the traditional style of philosophical writing and a proposed solution: increasing accessibility through the arts’ demonstrates her ambition in using the arts to create change in society. 

Winston J Pyke (he/him)

Winston has been working professionally in the entertainment industry for over 18 years and his work has taken him around the world as an Aerialist, Actor and Dancer.

Zakiyyah Deen (she/her)

Zakiyyah Deen is a London-based actor, writer, and workshop facilitator with Afro-Caribbean roots. Notable acting credits include roles in Small Axe (BBC), directed by Steve McQueen, and Enterprice S2 (BBC), created by Kayode Ewumi. In 2023, she made her professional stage debut in Brassic FM at The Gate Theatre. As a writer, Zakiyyah was Theatre Deli’s Classic Residency Artist in 2022 and Tara Theatre’s Constellations Artist in 2023. She is currently in the early stages of developing her debut full-length play. With over 5 years of facilitation experience, Zakiyyah has collaborated with esteemed organisations such as RAaW London, Hackney Empire, and various schools across London. 

A Tamasha Programme. Funded by The Baring Foundation.

In partnership with Creative Health Camden and King’s College London