Being Selected for the Showcase
It's very excited to be taking TESTOSTERONE by Rhum and Clay, in collaboration with writer/director & trans man Kit Redstone, up to the British Council Showcase in Edinburgh this year. This is the second showcase in a row that a production I've produced has been selected, so I thought that this time I'd share my experiences and tips. So here it goes...
First of all, to get onto the British Council Showcase you need to apply. The showcase is biannual and the application process opens around October of the fallow year. To be kept in the loop follow the Showcase Blog here.
I'm beginning to appreciate what kind of work the showcase is looking for... On the road with Backstage in Biscuit Land last year one of the wonderful things we discovered is how progressive the UK is. I mean obviously there's a long way to go still, but in terms of conversations regarding access and inclusion, excluding Canada, the UK felt leagues ahead of many of the countries we visited. This should be celebrated. Which is what the British Council's creative arm is for - celebrating British culture. As an aside, I think it would be in the British Council's interest to do some promotion of this achievement in the UK too. All too often the narrative of being a 'Brit' includes the image of drunk xenophobic skin heads, but the reality is that we are inclusive progressives, and this is something we should be shouting about from the roof tops and proud of, it ought to be part of the 'What it means to be a Brit' lexicon. It makes sense therefore that Backstage in Biscuit Land was selected to be part of the showcase and TESTOSTERONE equally so. Both harbour a series of powerful, important conversations at the heart of a high quality playful piece of theatre. Not all work in the showcase is political, it's showcasing quality work first and foremost, work that will sell to international audiences, but if that quality is also moving relevant conversations forward and is challenging cultural norms then all the better.
You don't have to be an established theatre company to be selected, Backstage in Biscuit Land was Touretteshero's first ever theatre show, but Touretteshero did already have a proven track record of delivering high quality events, talks and training, so you do have to demonstrate that you are able to deliver work that will represent the country in a professional light whilst overseas.
Last of all, the British Council need to have seen the work. This can be sent to them as a film, but it's always better for them to have seen the show live.