Funding Opportunity

The Shape of Things to Come

Volcano is looking to commission six performers to make individual short performances (around 30 minutes) in one of the spaces at our Swansea High Street venue.

This opportunity follows on from our highly successful 2022 commission series Solo Duets for the Future. The idea behind this project is to encourage performers to develop new performance modes in front of small enthusiastic audiences. We particularly want to encourage performers who engage with the future, the becoming or “not yet” of subject matter and mode of performance.

We would like the work and the applications to be experimental, but that shouldn’t exclude humour or invite navel-gazing – think 7:84 but with a contemporary framing or another perspective that might make fresh sense here and now. Theatre for tomorrow must be risky and participatory; it can also be playful and political. It is better that it is not an old idea that has gathered dust in a drawer or has previously been considered elsewhere. It is better that it is unusual and exciting, alive with all the contradictions that we individually and collectively struggle with right now.


• Submit your idea or outline for the performance that you want to create and deliver, your availability, and the type of space in which you would like to perform it. We want people to perform work they create themselves, not to send us a playscript. Performances should be around 30 minutes in duration.

• We are looking for NEW work to be created and performed within the fortnight commission period. Pieces already performed elsewhere (online or live), work that has already undergone R&D, or revivals of dormant scripts are not eligible on this occasion.

• We are looking to make six of these mini commissions over the season. You may submit an idea at any time from 27 April onwards. Submissions may remain open beyond the advertised date until all the awards have been made. We aim to respond to all submissions within one week of submission.

• Each commission will be two weeks long, including development/rehearsal and performance. Optional mentoring/advice sessions with Volcano’s Artistic Director are included.

• Submit your idea via this form. You may describe your idea in writing and/or upload a short video telling us about it. You may make a submission in English or Welsh.


The artist fee is £1500. There will be an allowance for travel and/or accommodation if needed equivalent to ITC/Equity rates, and we have an additional budget to meet specified access needs.

We envisage that each piece will be performed four times over the final Friday and Saturday of the fortnight. We’ll provide ticketing, print and marketing, and front-of-house for these performances.

At the end of the season at least two of the successful commissions will be offered additional in-kind space and support to develop the work further.

Other things to consider before submitting your idea.

• The performance should require minimal/simple tech that you can set up and operate yourself in the relevant space or – it should not require a stage technician.

• The work must be rehearsed to a professional standard for a public audience in an informal setting during the fortnight. It is OK if the creator sees their piece as a work-in-progress as this stage or intends to develop it further beyond the duration of the project.

• There will be a small budget for props, costumes etc. There is no budget for set build. We can configure the space to your requirements, and you can use any available items from the venue (tech, props, costumes or set items).

• You may rehearse the piece entirely or partly onsite.

• Performance spaces include the bar, the gallery, the Bunker Theatre (or part thereof), a smaller cinema-style theatre space, a large cupboard, a ‘cave’, a corridor, a large shop window, and a large loading bay with a roller shutter. Or you could take your audience on a short walk… Please see pictures in the application form.

• Performances can include English and/or Welsh, be bilingual or multilingual, or non-linguistic.

• Balanced with access criteria, we will prioritise work that can be enjoyed by a diverse or casual urban audience without specialist knowledge.

Want to meet us and have a look around before you submit an idea? Or have any other questions? Get in touch!

Small Print!

Copyright in the work resides with the commissioned artist.

Volcano may record or photograph the work for marketing, publicity, documentation, and/or reporting purposes.

Artists who received a commission under Solo Duets for the Future in 2022 are not eligible.

This opportunity is open to all. However, in the interests of reducing systemic barriers to professional opportunities and of achieving a plurality of voices and perspectives, the following minimum number of commissions will be reserved for artists with the following lived experience, protected characteristics or identities:

• At least one commission will be awarded to Black, Asian or Dual Heritage artists.

• At least one commission will be reserved for artists creating work in Welsh (or bilingually with Welsh pre-eminent).

• At least one commission will be awarded to a d/Deaf or disabled artist.

In addition to these reserved commissions, eligible applications from artists with the following identities, protected characteristics or lived experience will be automatically shortlisted: Trans artists, GRT artists and artists from lower socio-economic backgrounds.

The equalities measures described above are positive action measures to address identified current areas of under-representation in access to these opportunities or platforms – they do not prescribe the content or framing of the work (except for of the Welsh-medium commission).