About Us

Catch Penny Twist

Chris Glover in Catch Penny Twist 1990

Tinderbox Theatre Company is based in Belfast. Formed in 1988, it is one of Northern Ireland’s longest established and most respected independent theatre companies. Tinderbox is dedicated to new writing for the theatre, the playwrights who create it, and the artistic environment in which its work takes place.

Tinderbox produces two to three productions per year, carries out a range of initiatives to develop new writing for the theatre, and runs a year-round Outreach Programme in schools and communities across Northern Ireland.

The company performs in various venues in Belfast, and tours its productions across Ireland. Tinderbox has performed sell-out seasons in London and Edinburgh and recently performed at the Kennedy Centre in Washington DC. The company aims to develop a wider audience for new writing in the theatre, and has devised a number of initiatives in this area. See our Productions page.

The company employs a full time Dramaturg, the only post of its kind in Northern Ireland. The Dramaturg leads activities aimed specifically at the development of high quality new theatre writing, from responding to the scripts received by Tinderbox to supporting the work of professional playwrights under commission. See our Dramaturgy page.

Tinderbox has developed a highly acclaimed Outreach Programme, which offers workshops, training, participative projects, and tailor made resource packs to schools, community groups and individuals across the north of Ireland. The company also offers training and support for those interested in leading drama based workshops, in a variety of settings. See our Outreach page.

Maria Connolly and Miche Doherty in This Other City 2009

Maria Connolly and Miche Doherty in This Other City 2009

Tinderbox works alongside other companies to create a vibrant theatre culture that attracts and develops new talent and new audiences. The company is strongly committed to its local theatre community, prioritising employment opportunities for locally based actors, writers, directors, designers, stage managers, technicians, administrators and other theatre practitioners. Tinderbox is an Independent Theatre Council/British Actors Equity Approved Management and has charitable status.


Lally the Nyuck

Posted on 21 March 2014 in Productions

The Tinderbox team is delighted to be starting work on Abbie Spallen’s new play Lally the Nyuck on 24th March. We will be welcoming Nika McGuigan, Carol Moore, Miche Doherty, Paul Mallon, Michael Condron, Mary Moulds, Tara Lynne O’Neill, Richard Clements, Alan McKee, Ivan Little, Ian Beattie and Gerard McCabe to a week-long development and rehearsed reading of Abbie’s epic and hugely original play.

Abbie Spallen has recently been honoured with an Arts Council of Northern Ireland Major Individual Artist Award

Applications for Fireworks Young Writers Programme now open

Posted on 19 March 2014 in Dramaturgy

Are you an aspiring stage writer aged 18 to 25? Check out the Fireworks 2014. Tinderbox Young Writers Programme takes you through a 6 months journey from idea to performance draft, developing your skills in writing for the stage as well as understanding theatre. Deadline for application is 1st of May.

To find out more and the full schedule click here Firework 2014

Sound Stories at SARC

Posted on 4 March 2014 in Dramaturgy

Tinderbox and SARC presents a selection of short sound plays.

In 2013 we brought together writers Colin Bell, Michael Duke, Rosemary Jenkinson and Jimmy McAleavey with sonic artists Justin Yang and Peter Stitt as part of our Writers Lab.

Pleases join us to experience the experimental and visceral sound journeys which came out of the collaboration. The pieces are work in progress.

March 12th at 8pm at the Sonic Arts Research Centre, Cloreen Park, Belfast BT9 5HN

Tickets are free but please reserve your place by contacting Tinderbox on 02890 439313 or e-mail Hanna at hanna.slattne@tinderbox.org.uk

See the full Tinderbox news archive »