A Better Way FWD?

Former FWD artist Ginny Lemon in a green wig against an orange background
Former Fierce FWD artist Ginny Lemon

Lately at Fierce we’ve been thinking a lot about our artist development programmes. As we hopefully emerge from the pandemic we want to make sure we’re creating offers for artists that are actually useful and supportive. Funded by Jerwood Arts, we have recently launched our new commissioning programme: Fierce Further, which is now well under way. 

We have now turned our attention to our programme for local emerging artists: Fierce FWD. Over the last eleven years Fierce FWD has supported some of the most exciting performing artists to have emerged from the region such as Demi Nandhra, Selina Thompson and Ginny Lemon. Previously Fierce FWD took a small cohort of artists, selected through an open application programme through an 18 month development period, supporting them with seed funding, space, mentoring, free access to the festival and research visits. We’ve been thinking a lot about what our ecology needs at this moment, what resources we have access to and can offer and ways to minimise artist labour and so we’ve decided to move away from this small cohort, application based model.

We’re relaunching Fierce FWD as an open-access year round drop-in programme with quarterly activity comprised of workshops by internationally renowned artists and a series of dinners under the guise “FWD: Salon”. FWD: Salon is an informal dinner where artists and arts workers can come together to exchange ideas and experience. We’ll inviting emerging artists working in the realms of live art, performance art and experimental theatre, dance and performance to come and break bread and share knowledge together, with some of the leading arts professionals in the city

Historically salons  were places where art and ideas were shared equally and informally. We want FWD: Salon to democratise arts knowledge, build community and generate ideas. There’s no formal format, just an invite for artists to come and enjoy a good meal, some conversation and ask the questions they’ve always wanted answered. We’re hoping we’ll find an exciting new generation of West Midlands based performance makers who have faced a terrible climate this past year in which to ‘emerge’.

This new approach is a pilot, and we’ll be seeking feedback from our artistic community as we go. If you’d like to discuss any elements of make any suggestions don’t hesitate to contact Aaron.

So if you’re an emerging artist in the West Midlands working with performance and live art then come join us for dinner. Our first FWD: Salon is soon – July 27th! Spots are limited so register your interest and if we receive a deluge of interest we’ll pick 30 names from a hat.


Date: Tuesday 27th July
Arrival : 6:30pm – 9pm
Location : Fierce HQ
Albert House, 12-26 Albert Street, Birmingham, B4 7UD

Click here to register your space