Caroline and I were over the moon to be asked by the Birmingham REP Theatre, to be part of their ‘Furnace’ programme. Five theatre makers are working with community groups across Birmingham, to create original pieces of performance, which will be shared in July this year. This exciting project hopes to build long lasting relationships between Birmingham Rep theatre and communities who have previously not had much experience with the theatre.

Our project will be a collaboration with the women of Birchfield Big Local at Grosvenor Road Studios and women at two other hubs in Ward End. We want to create a safe place to come together, with other women to find new ways of sharing our stories. Through spoken word, art, voiceovers and music we will work together over the months to create a ‘sharing performance’. Also, as part of the project the REP will be arranging backstage tours and theatre trips for our participants.

We strongly believe in the importance of storytelling, shared experiences and giving unheard voices a platform. We will meet roughly once every two weeks and very much look forward to meeting you all. This project is accessible to all women regardless of experience.

The next workshops will be 10.30am – 12noon at Grosvenor Road Studios, 16 Grosvenor Road B20 3NP on the following dates:

Thursday 7, 21 and 28 June

Tuesday 3 July (performance day at The Dolphin Centre)

Thursday 5 July (performance at Grosvenor Road Studios)

Rachael Mainwaring, Women in Theatre

The Birmingham Repertory Theatre ‘Furnace’ Project is funded by Arts Council England

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