Project information

The Capital Project

The Capital Project is an evening of three short plays commissioned from around the country and written in response to London. The imaginations of three exciting playwrights living outside of London offer up a snapshot view of the mood of the country from an outside perspective.

November 2018 - November 2018

Charity information: Ardent Theatre Company

Ardent Theatre Company logo
  • Need


    At the end of 2016, a survey by CosRes for Centre for London showed that almost half of the people living in London polled said they felt distant from the rest of the country following the decision to leave the EU.

    London had voted overwhelmingly to stay in the European Union but now many feels the city is becoming more and more isolated from the country it supposedly represents.

    The idea is to promote a mutual understanding of how London is perceived from the outside looking in.


    We will commission 3 playwrights who are based outside of the city, to write three short plays ABOUT LONDON from an outsiders’ perspective. 3 London-based directors will rehearse each play simultaneously for one week with a cast of 6 actors ending in a performance on the Saturday at a London non-theatre.

    During the rehearsal week, we will deliver a series of online events – interviews, debates, provocations, news items, questions and commentary – that contextualize the plays in more depth.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Create a high-quality theatre experience that entertains, provokes and educates audiences


    » A pop-up live theatre performance created by a carefully selected pool of talent.
    » Provide online content that encourages greater debate, discussion and experience sharing.

    What success will look like

    Audiences will be asked to feedback on the 3 plays via a questionnaire and that captures what they thought of the evening and what positive benefit they took from it.

    Aim 2

    Encourage greater communication and empathy between Remain and Leave voting audiences


    » Produce 3 plays that show 3 different perspectives of London from the outside; from3 leave voting areas about a remain voting capital.
    » Provide online content that encourages greater debate, discussion and experience sharing.

    What success will look like

    The plays offer Londoners 3 different views of their city from the outside. Facilitated online discussions support greater interaction and understanding of others viewpoints.

    Aim 3

    Nurture and promote regional and London based artistic talent


    » 3 writers chosen from regions outside of London.
    » 30% of casting will be made up of new talent, defined as having left full-time acting relevant within the last 2 years.

    What success will look like

    3 writers from outside London, 3 directors, 6 actors and 1 stage manager will have taken part in the project.

  • Impact


    There will be a lasting legacy of 3 new plays that have the potential for a future life beyond this one-off performance. The plays will also be filmed and available to view online after the production and played at local showings in each of the 3 cities where the plays were commissioned. 13 artists will gain an experience that can support future employment. Audiences will have had their views challenged through a thought-provoking experience that will stay with beyond the performance


    The biggest risk is not achieving the full funds to deliver 3 fully rehearsed plays. This is why we are looking to fund the project from a variety of sources including trusts, foundations and individual donations.


    A project report will be written that collates all the feedback from participants, audiences, reviewers and peers. This will be made available to view on request. We will also share quotes from feedback via social media, website and newsletter.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £10,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £4,500 Commission To commission 3 short plays
      £3,000 Director Fees To employ 3 Directors
      £2,500 Actors To employ 6 actors (2 for each play)
  • Background


    The live performance will take place in London in a non-theatre ‘debating space’. We are exploring a couple of options that can only be confirmed and announced once funding is secured.


    3 writers from outside London.
    3 directors, 6 actors and 1 stage manager.
    Up to 500 Londoners.
    450 viewing the filmed performances regionally.
    500 viewing the filmed performances online.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    This approach has been informed by our positive experience delivering a similar project – PARTY LINES - in 2015 during the General Election when we commissioned 5 playwrights to write a short play each on one of the participating political parties chosen at random.

    “Brilliant concept, loved the variety of work on show. Please do more…and soon!”
    “A fantastic project with great engagement”
    “Very inspiring and unique experience”

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    13 Artists

    3 writers, 3 directors, 6 actors and 1 stage manager will work together to create this evening of 3 short plays.