TSOTA Team Round Up!

By February 14, 2022


Hello dear readers.

There has been a little bit of a reshuffle of things here at The State of the Arts, so we thought it would be a great opportunity to write an article introducing who we all are.

We’ve created a playlist of some of our current favourite songs for your listening pleasure, and to get to know who we are a little more. Give us a little follow on our Spotify while you’re at it :))



Will (he/him)

Lead Editor

I first came across The State of the Arts back in 2018, when I was in my final year at UoM – I had the world at my feet and, in my mind, already figured out. A friend suggested I stop sharing my uninvited opinions with her and write for this arts and culture zine she was involved with. At first I was more interested in the press tickets than the experience; four years later, I can say the latter has improved my life more than any number of free gigs could.

Since my naive early articles – which include a patronising swipe at Four Tet and a look at socially progressive virtual reality – I’ve kicked off a career in communications and content marketing, mellowed a little bit and written a lot more. I’ve also been sucked deeper into The State of the Arts universe, finding myself now in the role of Lead Editor.

I absolutely love my role, and love what we do at TSOTA. We’ve recently restructured, adding a bunch of great editors to the team that are helping us to map culture across the North. Although my job is to dabble in all parts of the project and support the team operationally, I’ve been floored by the competency and creativity of the new guys – I can guarantee that with them involved, the reach and quality of TSOTA will only scale up.

As always, I am looking forward to seeing all the budding scenes and talented artists that TSOTA platforms, and hope we get in on more of the big conversations around the cultural zeitgeist. I also hope the new team enjoy all their work with TSOTA, learn lots in their roles and get to grow as people, just as much as I did!

Drop me an email, or connect on LinkedIn!

Some songs I love atm…

  • Over and Over – Beach House
  • Two Worlds Apart – Little Simz
  • Busy – Erika De Casier



Helayna (she/her)

Publishing Editor

Hiyaa, I’m Helayna and I’m the Publishing Editor here at the State of the Arts. I’m currently a (stressed) final year student at Manchester School of Art doing Illustration with Animation BA. (feel free to check out my instagram @helaynadraws , if you’re interested to see the odd drawings I create or connect on LinkedIn:)) 

I joined the State of the Arts as a fun thing to do and to engage with the Arts Scene in the North West. Seen as the ‘Panacotta’ decided to halt the human interaction part of the Arts scene, the online and social media side was and is a brilliant place to connect and support each other. 

I’m passionate about platforming curious and at times hidden voices within the Arts and Culture space, ensuring this reflects an inclusive and diverse range of people. That’s a roundabout way to say that I’m a nosy person and like to learn about everything and anything going on around me. 

Here’s a photo of something that made me very happy this week. I present to you Ms Monster, who is thriving … tadaa. 

Favourite songs right now: 

  • What More – Swindle ft. Greenteapeng
  • Payback – Kojey Radical ft. Knucks)
  • Rose Rouge – Jorja Smith



Izzy (she/her)

Online Engagement Editor

Instagram: @izzhebb @izzyhebbvisual

Hiya, I’m Izzy and I’m the Online Engagement Editor here at TSOTA. I’m the person who promotes our writers’ great work. I have been writing with TSOTA for a couple of years now (you can find my work here), being a social media marketing professional – I am delighted to be here at such a great org driving arts engagement!

My heart and soul belongs to fashion. I have just graduated in Fashion Marketing and have also had a modeling career since 2019. Even appearing in 2021 London Fashion Week for Matty Bovan, a northern designer championing sustainable ideals. Here is a link to a fashion magazine created for my final uni project highlighting my specialism in fashion journalism.

As well as improving engagement, I have a strong desire to bring fashion content to TSOTA to further highlight the wonderful world of fashion across the North. If you are interested in fashion or want to be involved in any fashion content or projects please let me know! Contributors are very welcome, particularly: stylists, designers, photographers, hair/makeup artists, and of course models. 

Feel free to connect with me on Linkedin or email me! 

Some of my favourite songs:

  • Hacker – Death Grips
  • It’s Still Rock n Roll to Me – Billy Joel
  • The Model – Kraftwerk (hehe) 



Beth (she/her)

Commissioning Editor 

Instagram: @elizabethjanehaven

Hello, I’m Beth and I’m a Commissioning Editor here at The State of the Arts. So, this is our ‘meet cute’, normally we might meet in a coffee shop or an art gallery as many do in films, but for now we talk through emails and have met through the magic that is ‘the internet’. 

I am currently a 3rd year Media and Film Student at Liverpool Hope University. As most students and young professionals, the past few years has been, well what can I say, tiering, stressful, and out of the ordinary, but despite the dreaded ‘plague’ taking over the world, art has continued. I joined The State of the Arts excited to get back into the creative industry, exploring more on what is going on not only on my doorstep, but possibly yours too around the North West. 

I am passionate about arts and culture, as well as how art can help address societal issues around the world. Personally I love works and create my own work on these societal issues and problems to raise awareness and join in wider conversations. 

I love film; watching it, filming it and writing my own, but if you ask me my favourite film, I simply can’t decide! My hobbies include cooking, listening to music, going for walks and crochet. 

The view from the Walla Craig Walk above Keswick in the Lake District.

Some of my favourite songs at the moment are:

  • Two Weeks – Grizzly Bear
  • Do you feel my love – Stereophonic
  • Detectorists – Johnny Flynn



Becca (she/her)

Audience Engagement Editor

Instagram: @beccahorswillart_ 

Hi, I’m Becca, I’m The State Of The Arts audience engagement editor! I’m in my final year of Drama and Contemporary Performance at Manchester Metropolitan University, which has been an adventure.

I have recently been exploring the possibilities of combining my stop motion animation skills with live performance (which has been interestingly stressful) – feel free to check my work out @beccahorswillart_ on instagram.

I joined TSOTA to learn something new, expand my skills and be able to encourage and provide artists the platform they need. I want to share my passion for the arts with others and broaden possibilities for creatives in the North. The challenging industry takes no breaks, so I want to do whatever I can to help others, and learn new things along the way. 

Alongside my avid passion for the arts, I enjoy; baking, reading, walking my dog (Milo).


Ruth (she/her)

Commissioning Editor

Instagram: @ruthforan 

Hi, my name is Ruth. I am The State of the Arts Commissioning Editor. I live in London and work in content marketing and copywriting, and my TSOTA adventure started through a friend of mine from UoM. I was a writer, reviewing games, interviewing drag queens and directors for the BFI. 

I’ve always had a passion for culture and the arts, and feel that TSOTA is the perfect platform for these budding artists to bloom and grow. With a world that has become so accustomed to online promotion, it is important that every voice has the chance to be heard. So, this is how my role as Commissioning Editor comes into play. Researching, reaching out, and chatting to artists of any kind, giving them a platform where other equally like-minded people can see what they have to offer. With this role I am hoping to learn more about what goes on behind the scenes, acting as the ‘stepping stone’ if you will to help others in this industry. 

My passions include going to gigs (quelle surprise), playing guitar and bass, going on walks and absorbing useless pop culture facts. (Please allow me on your pub quiz team.)

Some songs I am loving at the mo:

  • In Care of 8675309 – Lambchop
  • Les jolies choses – Polo & Pan
  • Pain – PinkPantheress



So, that’s a little about us and to put faces to the name. Hope you enjoyed getting to know us and be sure to follow our InstagramFacebook, Twitter and of course here on our website, to keep up to date with what we’re doing.

See you soon,

TSOTAs Team.