Our city is full of surprises.
You can live in and love a city, but it can still surprise you. Whilst our doors are temporarily closed we are going to celebrate our amazing city with ten short audio theatre experiences. Each experience will capture your imagination and take you on an adventure across Cardiff. You’ll hear incredible but true stories from the past that you never knew took place. You’ll discover the secret lives of places you might pass by without a second thought. You’ll meet a world of extraordinary people and explore Cardiff as if it is an unfamiliar land. So this autumn, pop in your earphones, close your eyes, and truly experience the Heart of Cardiff.
The ten stories will be told by writers from across the city including familiar names, emerging talent and first time writers: Claire Boot, Emma Cooney, Emily Garside, Tim Green, Kyle Lima, Hannah McPake, Nia Morais, Mali Ann Rees, Owen Thomas and Aled Wyn Thomas. Heart of Cardiff was made possible through funding from the Arts Council of Wales’s National Lottery Fund and The Moondance Foundation.
Find out more about our Heart of Cardiff writers:
Claire Boot was born in Cardiff and studied at the University of Birmingham, gaining a Masters in English Literature. Her scripts have featured in SEEN at The Other Room and the Significant Other Festival at the Oldham Coliseum, as well as in theatre-in-education and community productions in Birmingham, London and Somerset. Claire’s prose fiction has been published in National Flash Fiction Day and Bath Flash Fiction Award anthologies, and she has written and recorded poetry for Big Start Assemblies and Dawns i Bawb. Claire also delivers workshops in primary schools for the Penrhys Pilgrimage Way, a historic 21-mile walking route between Llandaff Cathedral in Cardiff and Penrhys in the Rhondda. During lockdown, she was commissioned by Literature Wales to create Write At Home, a series of fifteen short videos using household items as prompts for creative writing.
Emma is a writer and actor currently in her third year at LAMDA. Emma wrote Belly Buttons as part of Sherman Theatre’s TEN/DEG series. She was a writer in the Young Artists Festival at The Other Room in 2018. Emma has been a member of Sherman Youth Theatre and Sherman Players, and appeared in Sherman Theatre’s 2017 Christmas production The Wind in the Willows as an Apprentice Actor.
Emily is a writer of many kinds, including but not limited to playwright, journalist and academic. After training in Montreal and at RADA, Emily then undertook a PhD which researched theatrical responses to the AIDS crisis, and the evolution of LGBTQIA+ theatre. Her book on Angels in America is being published by McFarland, and she is also working on a second book on Jonathan Larson’s musical Rent. As a playwright, Emily has produced work with Clock Tower Theatre Company, Dirty Protest Theatre, The Other Room and The Arena Theatre Wolverhampton and is a writer for the 14/48 theatre festival there.
Tim studied at Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama but wrote his first play for Radio 4 after leaving school. His second play was shortlisted for The Writers’ Guild Best Play Award. He now writes, directs and makes documentary films and series. Projects have included Revolutions (Netflix); Stephen Fry’s Last Chance To See (BBC2); Scott’s Hut In The Antarctic (90 mins BBC2); Call Centre (BBC3 / BBC1). Recently Tim made a series about Lady Jane for BBC4, a film about the anti-apartheid protests with Sir Gareth Edwards and a film about Pembrokeshire wheelchair athlete Lily Rice for BBC1.
Kyle Lima is an Actor, Writer and Director from Cardiff, and a graduate of Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. Kyle has had a career working in theatre, TV and film and is an associate artist at Sherman Theatre and Theatr Iolo. Kyle is a BBC Writersroom 2019 alumni and has written for Sky on their SkyArts ART50 initiative.
Kyle’s stage acting credits include: Muscle(Chapter); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Bristol Old Vic, Barbican Centre & Kennedy Centre USA); World Cup Final 1966 (Bristol Old Vic); The Last Mermaid (Festival of Voice - Wales Millennium Centre); The Little Match Girl(Shakespeare’s Globe); Tristan & Yseult(Shakespeare’s Globe, Bristol Old Vic & Theatre Clwyd); The Motherf**ker with the Hat (Sherman Theatre & Tron Theatre); Peter Pan (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre).
TV credits include: Merlin, Doctors, Gavin and Stacey Christmas Special 2019.
Film credits include: Burn Burn Burn, Pink Wall.
Hannah is a performer and theatre maker, based in Cardiff but originally from Edinburgh. She is Co-Director of Gagglebabble and Associate Artist of Theatr Iolo.
Writing credits include: Genesis part of 12 Plays of Christmas Research & Development at The Other Room and co-writer (with Lucy Rivers) on The Forsythe Sisters and Double Vision both for Gagglebabble.
Previous work for Sherman Theatre (as a performer) includes: Alice in Wonderland; The Wind in the Willows; Cinders; Plum (…and me, Will!); Maudie’s Rooms.
Nia is a Welsh and Cape Verdean writer from Cardiff who also speaks about diversity and education. She graduated in 2020 with a Master's in Creative Writing from Cardiff University. In her writing she is currently focusing on fantasy, horror, and LGBTQIA+ identity. She has been previously published in The Ghastling.
Mali Ann Rees
Mali is a bilingual Cardiff born actress, trained at East 15 Acting School. Since graduating in summer 2017 Mali has worked on numerous television and theatre productions. Mali debuted her acting career as Ffion in Severn Screens BBC/S4C Bilingual Crime Drama Hidden/Craith. She has since toured Penblwydd Poenus Pete with Theatr Iolo, Worlds Apart in War with Theatr Clwyd and Y Cylch Sialc with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru. Mali’s most recent TV Credits include Merched Parchus on S4C playing the character of Siriol and as BBC One comedy Tourist Trap. Despite writing for many years this is Mali’s debut piece, and hopefully not her last!
Owen is an award-winning Playwright whose plays include The Wood and Grav for Torch Theatre where he’s an Associate Artist. Grav has toured extensively, enjoying successful runs in London, Washington, New York, and a special one-off performance for the Welsh National Rugby team prior to their Six Nations victory against England in 2019.
His breakthrough play Richard Parker won Best International Show at the Hollywood Fringe Festival, Los Angeles in 2012. In 2019, West, his first American commission, premiered in Milwaukee, to a standing ovation. West toured Wales in Spring this year with performances in London and New York.
Owen is one half of ‘Bale and Thomas’ with Gareth John Bale. They have spent lockdown writing and directing monthly radio plays for RCT Theatres and Isolationship, an online play. Owen also wrote Who Runs Towards a Fire? as part of Sherman Theatre TEN/DEG series.
Aled Wyn Thomas
Aled has been a part of the creative community in Cardiff for over 10 years. In this time, he has collaborated with National Theatre Wales, Leeway Productions and Tin Shed Theatre Co. His writing is inspired by human experiences, emotional connections and his other main passion in life - football.
As a performer, he has appeared at The Other Room, Wales Millennium Centre and Sherman Theatre. His television credits include Y Pris, Caerdydd, Rownd a Rownd and Pobol y Cwm.
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