Join us for Smashing It, a night celebrating and empowering working-class artists, writers and performers.

Working-class artists are hugely under-represented in the arts industries, facing extra challenges from unpaid work to prejudice, though they make up a third of the British population. In response to this, 30+ visionary working-class artists came together in the book Smashing It: Working Class Artists on Life, Art & Making It Happen edited by Sabrina Mahfouz. Now they are bringing Smashing It to life on stage. Hear from these creators, who will perform, and offer tips and personal insights about how they are making the work they’re passionate about today.


  • TRAVIS ALABANZA is a non-binary artist, performer, writer and theatre maker, currently touring the hit show Burgerz.
  • SABEENA AKHTAR is a writer/editor and the Festival Coordinator of Bare Lit Festival, Co-Founder of the Primadonna Festival and of Bare Lit Kids.
  • SABRINA MAHFOUZ is an award-winning poet, playwright and writer, and RSL Fellow.
  • COURTTIA NEWLAND is a novelist, screenwriter, creative writing tutor, playwright and literary activist.
  • JOELLE TAYLOR is an award-winning poet, playwright, author and editor, who has performed internationally.
  • MONSAY WHITNEY is a writer and performer who has written for the National Theatre, Tamasha, the Lyric and the Royal Court.

The event will be followed by live music and book signings.


For the chance to have a 15 minute 1-to-1 with a professional working in film/TV/theatre/publishing before the performance begins, email with your CV and a brief outline of your project. Get feedback on how you can get to where you want to be.

Nikesh Shukla
Full of fight, fire and light
Kate Tempest
Urgent inspiration.
Yomi Adegoke


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