Curve's New Work Festival Line-Up Announced

Fri 17 Feb 2023

Curve’s annual showcase of new theatre from local artists to run Thursday 9 – Sunday 12 March


A host of local theatre-makers, dancers, writers, aerial artists and more will take over spaces at Curve from Thursday 9 to Sunday 12 March as the Leicester theatre holds its annual New Work Festival.

Announced today, the festival will include performances of new work, rehearsed readings, artist showcases, workshops, talks and exhibitions from the theatre’s network of Curve Resident Creatives, Curve Connect theatre-makers and theatre companies from across the country.

The New Work Festival will begin on Thursday 9 March at 2pm with a Sustainable Theatre Directing Workshop, delivered by Relish Theatre’s Executive Director Rob Ellis. That evening will see a rehearsed reading of Fool’s Gold, a social-magical-realist comedy about economics, family and how thinking differently can change the world, written by Matthew Gabrielli and directed by Curve Resident Creative Samson Hawkins. The rehearsed reading of Fool’s Gold will also be made available to stream, with further details coming soon.

From 6 March, Curve will host When All Is Said, a collection of five short plays delivered over the phone. Commissioned by Fuel Theatre, with support from Arts Council England, the plays are written by five Black trans people, including local artist and Curve practitioner Octavia Nyombi. At 12:15pm on Friday 10 March, local trans artists and allies are invited to Curve to join Octavia for a Q&A on the piece.

Friday 10 March will kick-off with Fuel Theatre’s When All Is Said: Writers’ Workshop at 10am, before a sharing of Curve Resident Creatives The GramophonesTake Flight, an exploration of aerial theatre for babies.

At 2pm on Friday 10 March, artists can find support on applying for National Lottery project grants with a workshop delivered by Arts Council England Relationship Manager Joanne Blunt. Finally on Friday 10 March, UNTAPPED Award winner and Edinburgh Fringe sell-out hit Good Grief comes to Curve. A paranormal, physical performance of loss and the memories left behind, from theatre company Ugly Bucket, Good Grief will be staged in Curve’s Studio theatre at 8pm.

Saturday 11 March will begin at 11am with an inspiring and insightful Q&A session with Curve’s Artistic Director Nikolai Foster, whose recent acclaimed Made at Curve productions have included The Wizard of Oz, Billy Elliot the Musical (winner of Best Regional Production at the WhatsOnStage Awards and Best Musical at the UK Theatre Awards) and Beautiful – The Carole King Musical. Also taking place at 11am will be a workshop delivered by Ugly Bucket, designed to boost participants’ confidence in clowning, movement, and comedy.

On Saturday afternoon at 1pm, a panel of Curve’s creative partners, including representatives from National Youth Theatre, will discuss pathways into theatre-making and how best to support emerging talent.

Saturday evening will see an exciting collection of comedy, dance, music, theatre and more from Midlands’ artists in the New Work Festival Showcase at 8pm.

From 7 – 17 March, throughout the festival, Curve Resident Creatives STATE OF FLUX will curate No Drinks on the Dancefloor, a free exhibition celebrating the history of Leicester’s nightclub scene on Curve’s Mezzanine level. Filled with archive photography, film, recorded audio interviews, love letters and memories of the dance floor from a range of contributors, State of Flux will also host a party including live performances, DJs and speakers on Saturday 11 March at 9pm.

The festival will close on Sunday 12 March with Mass Movement, showcases of exceptional youth dance talent from across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. With a series of pieces created by young dancers and choreographers specially selected by a panel of dance industry experts, performances will run at 4:30pm and 7:45pm on Sunday 12 March.

Speaking about the festival, Curve Resident Creative Samson Hawkins said:

“The festival has given me the opportunity to work on a piece of new writing by an exciting local talent. It’s a hard time for the development of new plays, and without opportunities for playwrights to have their work in front of audiences, it’s impossible to progress their craft. I think Fool’s Gold has a vital current political heartbeat throughout with genuinely relatable characters, so I’m excited to see how audiences react.”

Curve’s Chief Executive Chris Stafford and Artistic Director Nikolai Foster said:

“The sheer diversity of work taking to our stages across the New Work Festival reflects the ambition and talent of our incredible East Midlands artists. The ingenuity and imagination inherent in all these new works, across a variety of theatrical forms, represents the very best of the next generation.

“Come along to Curve and let these artists and companies inspire and transport you!”

Tickets for all performances and events across Curve’s New Work Festival are on sale now to Curve Friends, to Curve Supporters from Monday 20 February, to Curve Members, Groups and Access Register customers from Tuesday 21 February and on general sale from Wednesday 22 February, all at 12 noon.

To find out more about Curve’s New Work Festival, visit –