Leeds Studio – Bridging the Gap is a new collective of experienced artists and arts professionals who are coming together to establish a new arts studio for young people 16-30. Between us we bring many decades experience in developing young and new artists, managing arts venues and arts projects, the arts and young people sector in Leeds, nationally and internationally and contemporary experience of struggling to establish oneself as a young artist in Leeds and region.
ALEX CHISHOLM worked for West Yorkshire Playhouse for the past 12 years developing and producing new writers and new artists. Writers she has discovered and developed include Mark Catley, Alice Nutter, Tom Wells, Mwewa Sumbwanyambe, Tajinder Singh Hayer, Jodie Marshall and Dom Grace. Recent achievements include commissioning developing and producing production and tour of Refugee Boy adapted by Lemn Sissay and The Market a promenade verbatim play in and about Leeds Kirkgate Market. Both involved extensive community consultation and engagement.
ZODWA NYONI is a Zimbabwean-born playwright and poet. She was Channel 4 Writer-in-Residence at the West Yorkshire Playhouse 2014. Her previous residencies include: Apprentice Poet-in-Residence Ilkley Literature Festival (2013), Writer-in-Residence Leeds Kirkgate Market (2012), I Love West Leeds Festival (2010) and Poet-in-Residence BBC Radio Leeds (2006). Her plays have showcased at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, University of Leeds, Theatre in the Mill, Square Chapel, and Bush Theatre. Zodwa has read her poetry at the Venezuela Embassy (London), British Museum, Bridlington Literature Festival, Southbank Centre and Nuyorican Poets Café (New York City). Her play Boi Boi is Dead premiered in February 2015 at West Yorkshire Playhouse in co-production with Tiata Fahodzi and Watford Palace.
LLADEL BRYANT is a graduate of Manchester School Of Theatre & the co-founder of Chicken Shop Shakespeare, a Leeds based and internationally recognised collective which explores Shakespeare’s works through flash mob theatre. His credits include Ivanov in Ivanov (Manchester School Of Theatre), Claudius in Hamlet (Manchester School Of Theatre), Solomon in Bittersweet (Red Ladder Theatre), Romeo in Romeo & Juliet (T-Danby) Barista in DCI Banks (Left Bank Pictures). He was also selected as expert’s choice upon completion of his final year showcase in 2013 & was awarded with the title of UK’s Young Citizen Of The Year 2006.