Commissioning opportunities for Artists 2020

The Place Bedford, Artist Commission Proposal

About the project:
In 2020, The Place Bedford is very proud to announce that for the first time we will be commissioning new work from artists. We’re looking for creative people interested in exploring the boundaries of games and performance, specifically making work for young people aged 12-16, and their friends and families.

We love games, and we really love it when people come together in a live space to experience something as a group. That’s why we set up GAME PLAY, and it’s why we love all kinds of live performances. We want to find emerging artists, theatre makers and/or individuals/collectives who are interested in making this type of performance/game work for the first time.

The Place Bedford will commission two new pieces of work during 2020, for presentation to audiences and participants at GAME PLAY festival in January 2021.

We’re very excited to be working with artsdepot, based in North London, to help us provide organisational support and creative space for selected artists to explore these ideas further! We’ll also be making space available at The Place through Summer & Autumn 2020 to develop their creative ideas further, through Residencies here in Bedford. Suggested dates are listed below. Please note that these dates are not exhaustive, and we can work with selected artists to provide space.

The selected artists will be invited to present scratch or work in progress at a showcase on Thursday 8th October, when the full programme for the January 2021 GAME PLAY festival will be announced. They will then develop the work for presentation to young people, families and game players at our January festival in 2021. Selected artists will need to be available for the Scratch and Performance dates.

Alongside these commissions we will be partnering with Live Art Development Agency to commission a DIY programme for 2020. DIY is an opportunity for artists working in Live Art to conceive and run professional development projects for other artists. We’ve included some information about that brief at the end of this document, or you can find out more about the opportunity by visiting the LADA website:

Applications Open: 02 March 2020
Application Deadline: 6pm Monday 13 April 2020
Application decision & Shortlisted Artists contacted: Monday 20 April
Interviews: 04 – 06 May 2020
Residency 1: Mon 11 May – Sun 23 May
Residency 2: Mon 01 Jun – Sun 13 Jun
Residency 3: Mon 29 Jun – Sun 11 Jul
Residency 4: Mon 07 Sep – Sun 20 Sep
Residency 5: Mon 21 Sep – Sun 04 Oct
Scratch Night: Thurs 08 Oct
Residency 6: Mon 12 Oct – Sun 25 Oct
Performance Dates: Fri 08 Jan – Sun 10 Jan 2021

Successful applicants will be awarded a commission fee of £1600 towards their time and project. A small production cost budget of £250 will also be available for each selected application to turn their ideas into reality for the GAME PLAY festival in January 2021.

Alongside this artists will receive support from staff and volunteers at The Place Bedford, as well as mentoring (in person or online) from established artists making theatre/game work already.


The Application form is available for download here in pdf or Word format:

GAME PLAY 2020/21 Residency Application Form

GAME PLAY 2020/21 Residency Application Form .pdf


Find out more about the whole of Game Play festival by visiting our site here:

Funding for GAME PLAY comes from Arts Council England and The Foyle Foundation