UK festivals unite to offer £4,000 theatre commission

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Theatre company Made in China has been awarded £4,000 to develop a new performance piece, as part of a joint initiative launched by four UK festivals.

Ipswich’s Pulse, Bristol’s Mayfest, Sampled, which takes place in Cambridge, and Camden’s Sprint festivals have come together to commission Made in China’s Gym Party, which will be shown at each of the four events next year.

Made in China will also be offered space to rehearse, as well as support in producing its production.

The festivals hope that they will be able to commission work from other companies in the future, after trialing the scheme in 2013.

Ed Collier, a festival director of Pulse, said: “It’s so exciting to be able to pool our resources to create such a great opportunity for a theatre company. We hope that this trial joint commission may be followed up with further consolidated making opportunities across the festivals in future years.”

In addition to the joint commission, Pulse this year launches the Suitcase Prize, which will see one theatre company awarded £1,000 for creating an “environmentally and economically sustainable” piece.

All shortlisted companies will show their work in progress on the first Friday of Pulse, which runs from May 20 to June 8, 2013.

The winning company will be announced on the same day.

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