Deafinitely Theatre today announce the second round of bursary winners, awarded to six deaf or hard of hearing theatre freelancers – Christopher Fonseca, Kelsey Gordon, Nadeem Islam, Maral Mamaghani, Craig McCulloch and Evie Waddell.
As with the first round of winners in February 2021, each winner will receive £1000 for their career-development, additionally getting exclusive access to networking and keeping-in-touch sessions. The bursary was open to any deaf or hard of hearing practitioners and performers over the age of 18, at any stage in their career.
Deafinitely Theatre’s 2021/22 artistic programme is supported by Esmé Fairbairn Foundation’s Reinvent Performing Arts fund, which has committed to supporting arts organisations through the Covid-19 pandemic. Deafinitely Theatre has been generously awarded a grant of £43,000.
Artistic Director, Paula Garfield, said today, “Deafinitely Theatre is incredibly proud to have received a significant Esmée Fairbairn Reinvent Performing Arts fund grant that will enable us to continue developing new digital work – we will be announcing the next stage of this work shortly. This support, along with a second Arts Council England Cultural Recovery Fund grant, has ensured that we were able to produce work throughout the pandemic, and additionally give financial support, mentorship and promotion to 26 British deaf freelance theatre professionals. The six artists in this second round of the Deafinitely Theatre Bursary scheme represent a diverse range of talent and performance making and we can’t wait to see the work they develop as a result of their bursary. Highlights of their work will join the Bursary videos already on our website, which I encourage you to watch to see the brilliant work this inspiring group of deaf and hard of hearing professionals are creating.”
The six recipients will use their bursary for the following:
- Christopher Fonseca – to develop and present a day of professional dance and physical theatre training, discussions, skill-sharing and networking for the deaf dance community to support the next generation of artists.
- Kelsey Gordon – to support her development as a director, including training, workshop and shadowing opportunities.
- Nadeem Islam – to develop his experience as a writer and performer with mentorship from an Asian screenwriter and to devise a dark comedy monologue for film based on his experience of racism.
- Maral Mamaghani – to research a live art performance installation for an outdoor space, centered on her intersectionality and status as a deaf female refugee. Experimenting with lighting, sound and structure, Mamaghani will research and develop a performance concept for outdoor festivals.
- Craig McCulloch – to develop a new visual show, including R&D with two performers, building his skills as a writer and director.
- Evie Waddell – to create a new piece of work that explores the connections between BSL and Gaelic cultures using traditional song, stories and dance, collaborating with BSL theatre makers and dancers.