Ardent Theatre Company announce Sacrifice at Soho Theatre performed by inaugural Ardent8 Company

Sacrifice 2018

Sacrifice 2018

Ardent Theatre Company today announced Ardent8, a year-long programme that offers artistic support to eight recent graduates who have found it difficult to make the leap from the regions to London. The inaugural ensemble are Sophie CoulterAngela CrispimClare HawkinsHenry HolmesNathan LinsdellJamie ParkerGarry Skimins and Sam Weston. The ensemble will perform the world première of Sacrifice written and directed by Andrew Muir at Soho Theatre, Upstairs from 31 July – 4 August 2018.

Ardent8 is an ensemble of eight young actors selected to participate in the year-long Ardent Theatre Company programme to offer artistic support to recent graduates who have found it difficult to make the leap from the regions to London. Through various workshops with carefully selected practitioners, the ensemble is able to access opportunities within the industry they have otherwise found inaccessible, but which Ardent Theatre Company believes is no more than an equal opportunity. Following a workshop from which a new play is developed specifically for the ensemble, the programme culminates in a two-week residency in London when the company rehearse and perform the word première.

Ardent8 is supported by Cockayne – Grants for the Arts, London Community Foundation, The Foyle Foundation, The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust, Arts Council England, Boris Karloff Charitable Foundation and Royal Victoria Hall Foundation, and leading industry figures including Julie Walters.

The inaugural Ardent8 play is Sacrifice written and directed by Andrew Muir at Soho Theatre, Upstairs.

“Six grand a month for one room in the basement of a disused pub on the corner of a dirty high street with no natural light and damp black walls that make it feel more like a coffin than a home?”

“It’s the going rate”

Sacrifice, a play that asks the question, “Is it worth it?” Andrew Muir’s first play for the Ardent8 ensemble explores the sacrifices a group of young outsiders are willing to make in order to survive in a city that only ever seems to embrace the privileged insiders.

 Andrew Muir said today, “The UK has long needed a programme such as this, which offers an invaluable opportunity to graduating students from colleges around the country, who are too often forced to stop before they’ve even started, especially in the arts industry. This programme is not another false promise of fame and fortune, rather it is a platform and an opportunity that these young people would have otherwise not had access to.”

Julie Walters said today, “It is so refreshing to come across a theatre company aiming to cut through the wall of privilege and provide an equal opportunity for all regardless of background – this is a project I support.”

Writer and director Andrew Muir’s plays include Anniversary Sweet (Finborough Theatre), Push and Green Grass (Union Theatre), Gaugleprixtown (Edinburgh and Studio 42, New York), Double Sentence (Deafinitely Theatre @ Soho Theatre), Gold Dust (Black Country Touring UK tour and Soho Theatre), The Session (Soho Theatre and Inis Nua Theatre Company, Philadelphia) and Take On Me (Dante or Die Theatre Company UK tour). Muir was commissioned by BBC Radio 3 to write a play, A Perfect Non Starter, for the Verb. How Soon is Now, Muir’s first feature screenplay, is currently under option with INRed Films. He is writer in residence at the Bournemouth and Poole College of Further Education, where he writes and directs new contemporary plays for second year degree students, as well as being mentor on the MA in playwriting at Central School of Speech and Drama. His latest piece for the college, Life & Death in an Ocean Full of Hope was presented at the Lighthouse, Poole and has been invited back to take part in the Paines Plough Roundabout Season in Autumn 2018. Muir has run writing workshops for companies including Soho Theatre, OId Vic New Voices, Deafinitely Theatre, Ransom Productions in Belfast, TRON Theatre, Glasgow and is currently in his second term as lead practitioner on a ten-week writing course, Playwriting for Beginners at the National Theatre. Muir’s directing credits include Two (Southwark Playhouse).

Ardent Theatre Company was founded by Andrew Muir and Mark Sands. The company believes theatre is a place where no one feels like an outsider and that theatre should be for everyone, irrespective of their background or economic circumstances. The company set out to achieve this through the stories they choose to tell, the people they employ to tell them and the audience they engage to experience them. They are committed to producing theatre that speaks about the world we live in; both newly commissioned writing and established text with a contemporary relevance. Their work always enables them to have a voice within the mainstream theatre scene or engage audiences on a grassroots, national level. Through their artistic development programme and casting policy they support the careers of young, recently trained artists from outside London. They also work with non-theatre organisations that share similar ambitions to take a sector-wide approach to giving voice to those who struggle to be heard.

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Twitter: @ardenttheatre

Soho Theatre, Upstairs

21 Dean Street, London W1D 3NE
Box office: 0207 478 0100



Tuesday 31 July – Saturday 4 August 2018, 7pm

Thursday and Saturday matinees at 2.30pm


£10 full price / £8 concession