Do you love theatre but often find yourself frustrated with things as they are?

Maybe you feel audiences don’t get a voice. Perhaps you feel like an outsider in your own profession. Maybe you’ve just started out and need support, or perhaps you’ve been in the profession for years and feel jaded.

Do you usually dread discussions and meetings?

Are you looking to change things?



In 2012, for the first time ever, you have the opportunity to take part in a unique nationwide conversation.


The DEVOTED & DISGRUNTLED ROADSHOW comes to the Tobacco Factory Theatre

What are we going to do about theatre and the performing arts in 2012 and beyond?


A two-day event for everyone and anyone who wants to make theatre better and make better theatre


Hosted by Improbable and Tobacco Factory Theatre

Sat 30 June, 10am – 6pm and Sun 1 July, 10am – 4.30pm


To book click here.


“The most energizing event in the theatre calendar.” Lyn Gardner on Improbable’s D&D events


An Invitation

from the Tobacco Factory Theatre’s Director, Ali Robertson


Jam tomorrow, jam yesterday, but never jam today


For a while now, there’s been a feeling around that the south west and Bristol in particular is going to be a wonderful place to make theatre. It has felt like we’re on the cusp of something glorious. It’s true, things are already pretty special in the region: artists are making good work; Bristol is regularly described as the go-to city for graduate, new and emerging theatre-makers; it’s saying ‘yes’ in a way that no other places outside London are.


That all this has been built up organically reflects wonderfully well on the region, and yet there are things to be genuinely concerned about. The situation as it stands feels very precarious. Aside from the talent, passion and determination that abounds, there is something just not solid enough in the foundations and infrastructure to support the achievement of the sector’s aspirations. For example, I am always dismayed to hear how even those artists who are amongst the most successful in the region in terms of quality of work and reputation are surviving on so little. It seems to me that it’s hard to make work for all the wrong reasons, and I am worried about the how the day to day realities of living and making a career impact detrimentally on the morale and ambition of theatre-makers at every level – from those just starting out to those who’ve been around the block.


If we want Bristol to be everything it could be then I don’t think we can just keep going on as we are. In fact I’m afraid of what’ll happen if we do: it feels just as likely that things could fall apart as it does that they could become glorious.


I said ‘yes’ to the D&D Roadshow coming to the TFT because I want concrete things to happen, things that concern artists not just here but all over the country.  Being part of a nationwide conversation represents a real opportunity for transformative change – change that must happen if we are to not just survive but also thrive, change that sees Bristol take the leap and move from being on the cusp of glorious to actually being glorious.


Ali Robertson


How it works

Devoted & Disgruntled Bristol is an Open Space event. Open Space has been used successfully all over the world. It is an exciting open-ended event that enables a self-organising group to use its collective imagination to deal with complex issues and it achieves this in an incredibly short space of time. By the end of the event the following will have occurred:

-          Every issue of concern to anybody will have been raised, if they took responsibility for doing that.

-          All issues will have received full discussion, to the extent desired.

-          A full report of issues and discussions will be in the hands of all participants.

-          And YOU will have taken part in making it happen.


To find out more and to book your place click here.



Improbable and Tobacco Factory Theatre are committed to ensuring that Devoted and Disgruntled is a democratic and accessible event so please contact the Improbable office to discuss your access requirements.
Voice: 020 7240 4556
Email: .uk
SMS: 07939 378607


Devoted & Disgruntled Bristol is wheel chair accessible. We are offering BSL interpreters, but please book 2 weeks in advance to ensure we are able to provide a suitable service. Our information is available in a range of formats. Assistance dogs are welcome.


Devoted & Disgruntled is part of the London 2012 Festival, a spectacular 12-week nationwide celebration bringing together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK, from 21 June to the 9 September 2012. For more information check


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