Community Ambassadors

Thanks to the sponsorship of Leicester-based music licensing company PPL PRS, we were able to offer free tickets to stream our Made at Curve production of The Color Purple – at Home to young people and those who would not otherwise have been able to access theatre.

These free tickets were distributed by our Curve Community Ambassadors as part of their ongoing work to help us find new ways to connect with our local communities. The ambassadors have each used their own expertise and local knowledge to invite a range of groups to enjoy the show for free as part of this initiative, widening engagement and participation with the production across Leicester.

PPL PRS’s sponsorship came as part of the company’s Restore the Rhythm campaign, an initiative to help businesses get back to their best following lockdowns using the power of music.

Scroll down to find out more about our Ambassadors!

Portrait of Barbara Grant-Bennett

Barbara Grant-Bennett

Barbara Grant-Bennett has over three decades of experience of working with Leicester’s diverse communities, developing projects and programmes to benefit particularly those most vulnerable and in need.

A double Alumnus of Leicester’s flagship University, DMU, with BA (Hons) in Performing Arts and subsequently MA in Community Education (with Professional Qualification), Barbara currently works as a Community Engagement Officer for the Charitable Incorporated Organisation, St Matthew’s Big Local, which is having a significant impact on local people’s lives.

Barbara has recently joined Curve’s Community Ambassador Team. Her intention is to reach out to and galvanise support from Leicester’s ethnically diverse communities, particularly first-time theatre goers.

Stacey McCarthy has long brown hair which is swept to the side and falls over her right shoulder. She has brown eyes and is looking down into the camera with a light smile, She wears a black top and is visible from the chest up.

Stacey McCarthy

Stacey McCarthy is dancer choreographer, movement director and practitioner from Leicester, who is also a qualified Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and provides access to the Performing Arts for the Deaf community and audiences. She regularly collaborates with and teaches young people. Stacey takes inspiration from art forms inspired by Black culture including contemporary and commercial styles of dance. She is currently working on some exciting shows, developing various projects of her own and is looking to further collaborate with Deaf and hearing creatives to bring more opportunities to the Midlands.

Stacey is also a Curve Resident Creative.

Kesha Raithatha

Kesha Raithatha is a dancer and choreographer who embodies Kathak and Contemporary movement. She creates work that is rich in detail and experimentally reconsiders contemporary South Asian dance. Her curiosity and exposure to a wide range of movement training informs and invigorates her dance-making vocabulary. She is passionate about exploring her dance a way which allows the viewer to have a surreal and transcendental experience, but also as a means to be a voice for the collective.

Kesha is also a Curve Resident Creative.

Farhana Shaikh

Farhana Shaikh is a writer and publisher born in Leicester. She is the founding editor of The Asian Writer, an online magazine championing Asian literature. She established Dahlia Publishing to publish regional and diverse writing and the Leicester Writes Festival to celebrate local writing talent. In 2017 she won the Penguin/Travelex Next Great Travel Writer competition.  She has been longlisted for the Thresholds International Short Fiction Feature Writing Competition and the Spread the Word Life Writing Prize. She is the author of From Imposter to Impact: Arts Leadership in the 21st Century, a book she wrote during her time on the Curve Cultural Leadership programme. Her first short play, Risk was developed by Kali Theatre and a staged at Curve.

Farhana lives in Leicester but can be found on Twitter talking about books and publishing @farhanashaikh.