Let Me Be

Let Me Be course sign by Graeae (grey eye) Theatre and 1623 Theatre Company, in collaboration with Cutting Edge Theatre

New short course for theatre-makers

“Let me be that I am, and seek not to alter me”
(Much Ado About Nothing)

Graeae and 1623 Theatre Company in association with Cutting Edge Theatre.

About Let Me Be

Let Me Be is an online course created by Graeae and 1623 Theatre Company to develop your theatre-making skills.

The course begins by learning and sharing some of Shakespeare’s characters who face social injustice or barriers in the plays. You will then start to create conversations between you and the character you have chosen. We will then support each other to make this into a duologue or short scene. These will then become tokens of celebration, to share to a small and friendly audience online or in person.

Who is the course for?

The course aims to make a safe space to support creativity and artistic skills development for learning disabled, Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent artists.

The course is tailored to try and meet everyone’s needs, no matter how much experience of Shakespeare or performance you have. The course is open to anyone over the age of 16 who is learning disabled, Deaf, disabled or neurodivergent.

When does the course run?

Dates: Tuesday 7 March 2023 – Tuesday 16 May 2023 (with a break on Tues 11 April for Easter)

Times: 11am- 12:30pm

When your place is confirmed, you are committing to attend the first 5 weeks.
You then have the option to continue for a further 5 weeks, working towards a sharing of your work.

This 10-week course is split into two stages (Act 1 and Act 2) to offer flexibility for those who may find long commitments challenging at this current time.

How much does it cost?

The course total is £5. Bursaries are available if you need this.

This course is designed, delivered and administrated by disabled artists and great care goes into the coordination and ensuring the best provisions are offered. In return, your participation and intentions to commit to the first 5 sessions are appreciated.

When and how is the course delivered?

The course will take place on Zoom across 5 weeks (5 sessions) with the option to continue onto the second stage beyond this for a further 5 weeks. Sessions will be practical and participatory. They will run for approximately 2 hours, with comfort breaks and work taking place in breakout rooms.

You will be working with four artists/ facilitators:

  • 1623’s Artistic Director, Ben Spiller
  • 1623 Associate Artist Sam Becket Jr
  • Graeae Theatre Company’s Creative Learning Director, Jodi-Alissa Bickerton
  • Cutting Edge Theatre’s Associate Artist, Abigail Brydon

Week 1
What’s your experience of Shakespeare so far? What do you want from this course?
Which Shakespeare characters inspire you? Who is your alter-ego?

Week 2 
What would you put in a text message or email to your alter-ego?
How would your alter-ego reply to your message?

Week 3
Share back your messages to each other.
How could you bring together your message and alter-ego’s response? This will form a duologue – two people in conversation.

Week 4 & 5
What happens why you start to add or take away words and meaning, to grow the conversation between you and your alter ego?


 This is optional for those who are enjoying the course and wish to continue towards a scratch performance to a supportive, friendly online audience.

Week 6 
How do you and other artists on the course react to your work so far?

Week 7 & 8
Which bits of feedback will help you take your work to the next stage? Who will you cast to play you and your alter-ego?

Week 9 – The Sharing
Present your work as a collaboration with other artists, as a writer/performer or either.

Week 10 – Reflect – We all reunite. How was it all and what do you want to do next?

Participants are required to attend as many sessions as possible to gain the most from the spirit and outcomes possible from the course.

Access Provision

All participants confirmed on the course will be asked to complete and Access Provision form, to assist us with addressing your individual access needs. Provision may include captions/palantypist, British sign language interpreters, access support workers, or information in easy-read, plain text, large text or braille.


There is a limit of 10 places available on this course. Booking enquiries close on 6 February 2023

How do I request a booking on the course?

Write to us in an email, or you can email us a voice or video message to introduce yourself. Please include:

  • Your full name
  • Your location (town/city)
  • Why you are keen to take part in this course
  • Anything else which helps us understand more about you and your creative practice or aspirations.

Email all this above to producer1@cuttingedgetheatreproductions.co.uk at Cutting Edge Theatre by Monday 6 February 2023.

We will confirm if you have a place on the course by return email by Wednesday 8 February. It may be you are placed on a waiting list if we are over-subscribed.

Upon confirmation, we will ask you to complete an Access Provision form. We will also ask you to declare your commitment and intention to take part in the course, for our reassurance.

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