Belgrade Celebrates 50 Years of Pioneering Theatre

Posted on 25 April 2014

Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre is marking the 50th anniversary of establishing its dedicated Theatre in Education Company by announcing a year-long festival of events to celebrate and promote theatre for young people.

The Belgrade is regarded as the pioneer of Theatre in Education. Its ground-breaking initiative of using theatrical performance and drama workshops to explore cultural, social, political and moral issues that affect young people, spread to theatres across the UK, then across the globe. Now, approaching 50 years on, it is considered a standard for theatre and education organisations.

To celebrate this significant anniversary in 2015, the theatre will be highlighting the crucial role that drama plays in supporting the development of children and young people with a series of events including an International Festival of innovative theatre work both by and for young people, a Conference addressing the importance that engagement in theatre and education can play and a Digital Project that aims to explore TiE for the future. These will be held in the theatre and in schools and venues throughout the area.

Justine Themen, Associate Director at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry explains, “The impact of the Belgrade TiE company has been extraordinary: the strength of its work and the determination of its members has ensured that its legacy continues to be felt internationally – it is with this inspiration that the theatre is delighted to celebrate 50 years of TiE and to launch the International Festival.”

Alongside TiE work, the Belgrade Theatre also has a strong tradition of Youth Theatre. It currently runs eight Youth Theatre groups and five groups that target young people from black, Asian and socially disadvantaged contexts. The Belgrade Young Company has been established to provide young people with the opportunity to experience projects more closely mirroring the environment of a professional rehearsal and production process.

Running from Summer 2015, the full itinerary of participants is yet to be confirmed but the Theatre is currently developing partnerships with a range of organisations to deliver these events and would welcome any additional approaches from interested parties.

They are also keen to hear from people who would like to share personal experiences of Belgrade TiE or any engagement with the theatre as a child or young person from those early days.

To share your early experiences or for more information about the Belgrade’s TiE work and Festival, contact the Community & Education department on 024 7684 6741 or


For further media information or images please contact Kate Evans on T: 024 7684 6715 or E: