Box office: 01268 205 300

Towngate Ensemble

Artist Development

Are you a creative living or working in Basildon?

Towngate Ensemble is our Artist Development programme for creatives 18+. The programme aims to offer a wide range of sessions and workshops to local creatives living and/or working in and around Basildon to build a supportive community of artists and changemakers. The programme aims to help support local artists and also support work being produced in the borough, whilst fostering a collective sense of support and togetherness. Membership is FREE, all you need do is sign up! Find out all the sessions you can be involved in below.

Networking, Sharing, and Supporting

Creative Coffee Mornings

Join us for our monthly meets in the Upper Foyer. Our Creative Coffee Mornings are a space to network with other performers, makers, and creatives in the area whilst meeting members of the Towngate team. The sessions are open to everyone, and are our staple piece of the Ensemble programme which aims to be a supportive and nurturing space for artists to take a couple of hours out of the real world. Want to chat about your work? Looking to network with other artists from different disciplines? Looking for a space to get away from it all for a moment? Our Coffee Mornings are for you. To find out the next dates and to sign up, head to our Coffee Mornings page.

Ensemble Facebook Group

An online space for Ensemble members for networking, sharing, and discussion. Use this space to link with your fellow Ensemble members, start discussions around art and what is happening in the borough, and keep up-to-date with fellow members work and projects.

Be the first to hear about opportunities and workshops at the Towngate Theatre too. To join, send a join request to Towngate Ensemble.



Masterclasses and Workshops

Throughout the year, Towngate Theatre will host workshops and masterclasses for our ensemble members on an ad hoc basis. These sessions are free to attend for our ensemble members, all you need do is sign up to the event. These will be advertised on our Upcoming Events page and are open to anyone who feels they would benefit from the session. The sessions are first come, first served, so please book early to secure your place. Should you no longer be able to attend a session, please contact our box office team to free you your space.

Creative Coffee Morning

Scratch Nights and Performance Workshops

Ensemble Scratch Nights

Our monthly scratch nights are for early stage work of a maximum of 10 minutes. These pieces of work should be new material that haven’t had an audience outing before. The sessions are free to attend for both performers, and for audiences. The events will run like an open mic night; all you need do is sign up to show something in advance, and we will decide the running order for which each piece is shown. There will be no technical support on these evenings, just you and the audience in our Gielgud Room.

Any technical requirements should be noted prior to the performance date. Audience feedback will be collected on the evening in the form of written notes. To sign up to a Scratch Night as a performer, please complete our online booking form. To book to attend our next showcase, please visit our Scratch Night page.

Performance Lab

Facilitated by Terry Bird from New Town Films, Performance Lab is a weekly session for actors and performers to learn new skills, hone their craft, and get their creative juices flowing. The session will run every Thursday between 7:00pm – 9:00pm at the theatre, and will have sessions based around skill building and performance craft. Special sessions will occur that focus on creating content for show reels and also self-tapes.

The sessions will also work towards a performance sharing in March 2024. Sessions cost £7.50 to attend, and come with a discount when multiple are booked in advance. Find more information on our sessions here.

Between the Lines Book Club


Towngate Residency


Towngate Theatre are offering residency to creatives living or working in our locality to develop work that will benefit our communities. These residency spaces are via application process and are open to all creatives who are interested in growing their practice, developing new pieces of work, or collaborating with other local creatives. The residency is open to a wide range of participants – performers, actors, dancers, researchers, facilitators, artists, designers, etc. – who are looking to build meaningful work and relationships not only with their projects, but with their practice.

What we are offering – the residency consists of 5 days worth of space within the building, alongside a stipend of £250 for the week. Whilst with us, you also are entitled to a 30-minute advice giving session with a member of our theatre team, and time with a technician should your project be deemed ready and appropriate – the total worth coming to approximately £2500.

We are looking for residents who will be bold and adventurous in their work, using the space to elevate not only their projects, but also the output of work from the locality. We wish to see the resident engage with local people and encourage applications from people from all walks of life, regardless of age, religion, gender, sexual identity, or background. Residency spaces are open to individuals or groups.

Residency applications for January are open from Monday 11th December until Wednesday 20th December at 11:00pm. The residency will take place from Monday 15th – Friday 19th January 2024. All applicants will be notified no matter the result of their application. All decisions are final. To apply, please complete our online form. If you have any questions, would like an easy read version of this application, or have access needs and would like support with your application, please contact our Participation Co-Ordinator via email at Should you wish to, you can apply using a video application. The video must be no longer than 10 minutes and can be sent to via WeTransfer.

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