News: Stage One awards £50,000 to emerging theatre producer

Posted by Matt Bourne on 07:22 with No comments


  • Stage One has awarded £50,000 of its Start-Up Investment Fund to theatre producer, James Quaife.
  • James Quaife will co-produce Barking in Essex, by Clive Exton, alongside MJE Productions.

Stage One, the charity that supports new UK theatre producers and productions, has just announced the latest recipient to receive its Start-Up Investment Fund. James Quaife has been awarded £50,000 by the charity to co-produce alongside established producers MJE Productions, a new comedy, Barking in Essex by Clive Exton. The production will open at London’s Wyndham Theatre on the 6th September 2013 and will star Lee Evans, Sheila Hancock and Keeley Hawes.

The production will be directed by Harry Burton, with design by Simon Higlett, lighting by James Farncombe, and sound by Gareth Owen. The Start-Up Fund was launched in 2010, supported by industry suppliers, offers outstanding emerging theatre producers an investment (which they must match) in their first major commercial production.

Joseph Smith, Stage One’s chief executive said “James is an ideal candidate for the Start-Up award. He has shown great promise as an emerging commercial producer, working his way up through the different scales of productions. Stage One are proud to support his next step as a co-producer of a new West End play”.

James Quaife commented “I am thrilled to have received this investment from the Stage One Start-Up Fund for the West End production of Barking In Essex. To have both the financial support and the support from industry professionals is absolutely crucial with the development of my career as a commercial producer. I am extremely proud and excited to be a part of this production and wish to thank MJE Productions and Stage One for allowing me this incredible opportunity”.

Carole Winter said: “MJE Productions is proud to support the Stage One Investment Programme, which was created to encourage creative, successful and responsible practice. This award will allow James, a gifted young producer, the opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge and participate at every level in mounting a major West End show. Opportunities such as this are crucial to shore up the future of commercial theatre producers, as it is they who will ultimately be responsible for nearly all West End and regional touring productions”.

Stage One recently announced that it will offer two regional apprenticeships for emerging producers thanks to generous support from the Eranda Foundation. For more information on the Apprentice Scheme for New Producers contact Katie Harper at