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Production Capital is our flagship performance showcase, comprising of new plays by exciting writers and theatre-makers. We are delighted to host Ugly Duck, a new comedy by acclaimed playwright and former Coronation Street actress Deborah McAndrew; The Disappearance of Sadie Jones, a contemporary dream play by poet and playwright Hannah Silva; and A Conversation With My Father, an autobiographical piece about politics and protest by theatre-maker and performer Hannah Nicklin.

Development Capital is a packed programme of readings and works-in-progress – a place for playwrights to test out their work with a crack team of directors and actors. Plays include Joy Child by Royal Court writer Christopher Adams (in a pioneering collaboration with Birmingham’s Theatre Exchange) and City Melodies by Birmingham writer Lorna French (in partnership with Stone Crabs Theatre Company). There is also a chance to see sneak previews of new works by solo performers Francesa Millican-Slater and Jonathan ap Emrys.

There is a 3 for £12 ticket deal for the readings on Saturday and Sunday.

Workshops will run throughout the festival, offering writers the chance to develop their Industrial Capital – looking at the nuts and bolts of building a career. Hannah Silva will explore the use of sound and language in Playing with Words, Deborah McAndrew will tackle the issue of place and regionality in developing a story in Falling into Place, while dramaturg and director Caroline Jester will look at the thorny issue of Re-Drafting Plays.

Social Capital will play host to a series of networking events, including a Discussion Forum exploring the topical concerns of contemporary British theatre, and a talk with playwright, blogger and theatre campaigner Fin Kennedy, author of the In Battalions report into how Government cuts to the Arts Council are affecting new play development in the UK.

Venture Capital offers a space for experimentation – of new ideas, scratch performances and cross-art form collaborations. Acclaimed Birmingham poet Ben Norris will curate an exciting quadruple bill of spoken word meets theatre in Biting Tongues. Local writers will have the chance to chip in and create a brand new play across the space of three days in our performance installation, the Writers’ Relay. And the festival will culminate with a celebration of local creative talent as over 30 actors and directors tackle the question of “do we all get more right-wing in hard times” in Capital Festival: Theatre Uncut.

Box Office: 0121 446 3232; www.macarts.co.uk