Artist Development

We are committed to supporting and developing the professional practice of creatives, theatre-makers, practitioners and artists who live in or are originally from the midlands. Led by our Artistic Director and Creative Programmes team, we are particularly interested in working with artists who make work in Leicestershire and want to develop meaningful performances and projects with our local communities and audiences.

We work with artists who are early-career and leaving education right up to those who are established and experienced professionals. We understand that every artist’s career is unique and that there are very few set career-paths and so we avoid using age as a determining factor for our opportunities (unless where there is specific funding criteria to support an opportunity).

We try to be transparent and honest about who we are, what we can do, and what we can’t. We want to build authentic relationships with artists and get to know their work. We will always be drawn to a good story, artistic ambition and a passion for developing audiences.

Find out more about our artist development networks, programmes and current opportunities here.

Current Opportunities

Curve Connect

First Fridays

Curve Resident Creatives

Ongoing and previous partnerships

Get in touch

We are always open to new partnerships to create meaningful opportunities for artists so if you’d like to get in touch, please email us on [email protected].

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have a question about Artist Development at Curve? You may find the answers you’re looking for in our FAQs below

Who can get involved?

Anyone who considers themselves a professional artist aged 18 or over who lives in or comes from the Midlands.

What do you mean by professional artist?

Someone who is being paid to make theatre (whether part-time or full-time) and whether in a community setting or for an audience in a traditional theatre space.

Someone who has just left education and is starting out with the intention of being a professional artist.

What do you mean by practitioner?

We have a broad understanding and include: directors, writers, designers, lighting designers, AV designers, actors, performers, producers, movement directors, dancers, choreographers, sound designers, puppet-makers, costume designers, costume-makers, scenic painters, devisers, those in theatre-companies, theatre-makers, composers, musical directors, lyricists, and performance poets.

We use the term practitioner to mean those who use any of the above skills to teach and facilitate learning in a formal or informal setting.

What do you mean by the Midlands?

East Midlands: Leicestershire, Rutland, Lincolnshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire (Peterborough is also welcome).

West Midlands: Birmingham, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Shropshire, Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

What work are you most likely to support, invest in, develop or programme?

We have an eclectic programme and look for a wide variety of work to invest in. However there are always some genres we are drawn to or ideas we will consider:

  • Musicals
  • Adaptations of children’s and young people’s books
  • Stories and shows which speak to and reflect the diverse communities of Leicestershire
  • Shows which know who their audience is (and may come with an audience development strategy)
  • Shows for children and young people
  • Accessible shows
  • Work which is playful and fun or is a good ‘Friday night out’
  • Dance (Especially Hip-hop, Contemporary and South Asian)
  • Work which is ambitious and bold or plays with digital form

How can I pitch my work to you?

Via a 1 to 1 on a First Friday or via a 1 to 1 with Curve Connect

How do I get a show programmed?

If the show is ready for touring contact us via [email protected]

If the show needs support in some way contact us via [email protected]

If you need advice or ‘support-in-kind’ for your ACE bid, please give us plenty of notice.

We partner with a variety of other theatres and specialist organisations to support the professional development of artists and the broader national ecology of developing artists and new work.

Currently these are

In Good Company


Attenborough Arts Centre

Black and white images of five young directors each overlay a coloured triangle, against a medium blue background.


Birkbeck University

De Montfort University

four portrait photos of artists selected for the Naseem Khan Commissions

Bristol Old Vic and The Lowry



Writing East Midlands

Open Door