The Midlands has a lot to offer theatre-makers who live and create work in the region. There are artist development schemes, touring networks, work-in-progress scratch platforms and a huge variety of festivals showcasing new work.
This page contains information, resources and articles about what’s on offer.
REGIONAL PROGRAMMING DATABASE
Confused about how best to approach venue programmers?
In partnership with In Good Company, we’re pulling together the programming policies and preferences for every venue in the region. The Regional Programming Database is an opportunity for programmers to be honest and transparent about how they work, and in return, we encourage theatre-makers to use the information provided wisely and with respect.
Check back soon as we add more venues to the database.
The flagship artist development programme in the Midlands is In Good Company (IGC). Based at Derby Theatre, and consisting of a network of ten partner venues, IGC is transforming the way venues work with independent theatre-makers. Alongside IGC, many venues offer their own development schemes and opportunities.
ARTIST DEVELOPMENT SPOTLIGHT
“What marks out In Good Company is that they began by asking artists what it was they wanted and needed rather than simply telling them what they had planned for them, and the scheme continues to consult.”
– Lyn Gardner, Theatre Critic
In Good Company is the flagship professional creative and business development programme for theatre-makers and companies in the Midlands, providing mentorship, business support, resources and high-profile performance opportunities. In Good Company has transformed how artists and venues communicate and co-create exciting new performance platforms, commissions and touring networks.
IGC is based at Derby Theatre and its network of partner venues include: Arena Theatre (Wolverhampton); Attenborough Arts Centre (Leicester); The Brewhouse Arts Centre (Burton-on-Trent); Curve Theatre (Leicester); Lincolnshire One Venues; New Diorama (London); Nonsuch Studios (Nottingham); Nottingham Playhouse and The Old Library (Mansfield).
IGC is run by Ben Anderson (Creative Producer) and Sophie Hack (Administrator).
From sharing early ideas to showcasing more developed work, there are plenty of opportunities to test, interrogate and get your work in front of peers, programmers and audiences across the region.
PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITIES SPOTLIGHT
“PILOT Nights was a huge help for me developing ‘Beating McEnroe’. The team and audience were super supportive. Alongside all the constructive and enthusiastic feedback after the performance, I left my PILOT Night feeling motivated and excited to take ‘Beating McEnroe’ on to the next stage of development. Thank you.”
– Jamie Wood, Theatre-Maker
Running for seventeen years, PILOT Nights is the region’s flagship work-in-progress and scratch platform. The regular event provides a space where theatre-makers can develop their practice and try out new ideas in an informal and supportive atmosphere.
The PILOT Nights events remain an important part of the creative landscape for the independent theatre sector in the Midlands. Open to artists from across the UK, the events take place in venues across the Midlands.
The programme is managed by a team of local theatre-makers and producers: Rochi Rampal, Pippa Frith, Jo Gleave and Amahra Spence. For each event this core team is joined by a guest Co-Pilot who helps with the curation of the night.
Across the region there are lots of formal and informal opportunities to network and connect with peers working in the sector. We’ve also highlighted some national networks that theatre-makers might find useful.
IT’S ALL HAPPENING
ON THE HUB
At the very heart of the East Meets West network is your community Hub. It’s an online space where you can meet your sector soulmates, share knowledge and ask for help. With beautiful profiles, a community events diary, dynamic activity feeds and messaging, it’s time to take the work out of networking.
The Hub is free to join, and entirely private. Only other members of the network can see your profile and posts. You can access the Hub on the web, and there’s also an App for iOS and Android.
READ, WATCH & LISTEN
LIBRARY FOR THEATRE-MAKERS
During the current Covid-19 crisis, theatre-makers are being asked to reconsider how they create and distribute their work. This can come with considerable cost implications (tech equipment and some pieces of software aren’t cheap) as well as a need to upskill.
Theatre-maker Paul O’Donnell has been working with In Good Company to create a collaborative list of free software and training around making digital work.