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Guiding and supporting the theatre makers of the future

The recipients of the inaugural round of MGCfutures Bursaries have been announced



Bursaries have been awarded across a range of theatrical disciplines including directing, writing, producing, millinery, set and lighting design and performance artistry. Offering both financial and ongoing mentoring support from the MGCfutures team, our recipients come from across the UK.  Click on the recipients names below to find out a little more about their projects and how the Bursary will support their career development.

Dean Burke - Milliner

Theatrical millinery is a career change for former dancer Dean. The bursary will enable him to buy essential tools of his trade (good quality hat blocks!) and develop an online presence as he launches his freelance millinery career. 

Camisado Club - Performance Company

Newcastle based Camisado Club’s bursary will pay for a director/mentor to work with 7 members of the company to help them develop their work, specifically developing the directing skills of company member Jamie Tansley.

Rob Casey - Lighting Designer

Rob’s bursary will enable him to upgrade his lighting draughting software to the latest version, helping him to further progress from Associate to Lighting Designer.

Shruti Chauhan - Performance Poet

Shruti is a Leicester based performance poet, creating her first piece of narrative theatre. She is finding the transition to this form tricky as she hasn’t seen as much theatre of different forms as she would like. Her bursary will enable her to see work around the country of different styles to help her develop her narrative voice.

Ashley Cook - Producer

A developing producer, Ashley will use the bursary for a one-week development workshop for his next production - The Cardinal.  This is planned for production at Southwark Playhouse in 2017, representing a step up in scale for Ashley.

Rebecca Frecknall - Director

During her time as a Regional Theatre Young Director at Northern Stage, Rebecca formed a relationship with playwright Lee Mattinson. Her bursary will support the development of a new play that they are both passionate about – a bold re-imagining of Lorca’s The House of Bernarda Alba.

Ella Grace - Singer & Songwriter

Ella is a singer and songwriter passionate about making work with and for young people. The bursary will support the development of a new piece - Nethergate (previously The Missing). Find out more about the workshop which Ella’s bursary supported by watching her video update below.

Dan Jones - Director

The bursary will enable Wales based emerging director Dan to further develop his career by seeing more work around the country and enabling him to focus fully on his new production of Blink.

Anna Lewis - Designer

Anna is a young designer and the bursary will enable her to hire space in a shared studio for a year, helping her to develop her work and her career.

Isley Lynn - Playwright

The bursary will support the development of Isley’s play – Revolutions – enabling her to workshop this physical new piece with a full creative team.

David Ralf - Producer

David is a freelance producer and is about to produce his first solo piece – a site-specific collection of short audio plays and installations about the EU called Hotel Europe. His bursary will particularly support his plans for innovative digital distribution of this piece.

Tara Robinson - Director

A bursary will enable Tara to develop her next piece for her company, The Conker Group, called A Very British Bird Show.

Rachel Stone - Designer

Rachel’s bursary will pay for a three-year membership of Adobe Photoshop enabling her to further develop her design work both as an Associate and Designer in her own right.

Selina Thompson - Performance Artist

Selina’s Bursary will support the development of her new piece - The Missy Elliot Project – made in collaboration with black teenage girls in the UK and US.

Leigh Toney - Director

A director, who grew up in Devon and is passionate about telling regional stories, Leigh’s bursary will cover travel and living costs so that she can undertake placements observing rehearsal periods of professional productions as she develops her career.

Claire Willoughby - Theatre Maker

The bursary will enable Claire to buy essential equipment (underwater speakers) for her new piece – Sink or Swim – a fully immersive piece for under 5s! Claire is currently in residency at Platform in Glasgow, working with the Play Café (a group of under 5’s and their guardians from the local area, many with mixed needs and abilities). Claire hope this piece will also support her next step as a theatre maker enabling her to tour her work internationally.

Jingan Young - Playwright

The bursary will help Jingan to take the time she needs to complete her new play about Chris Patten – The Last Governor of Hong Kong as well as to produce a rehearsed reading in 2017 with London and Hong Kong based theatre company Pokfulam Rd Productions. She didn’t see her first play until she was 19 and arrived in the UK to start her undergraduate degree. She immediately fell in love with theatre and started writing.

Additionally Directors Oliver Dawe and Oliver O’Shea, Producer Andrew Hughes and Sound Designer Michael Woods have been offered on-going mentoring relationships with MGCfutures.