The Performance Ensemble on BBC Radio Leeds

A series of real-life short stories by Leeds theatre company The Performance Ensemble will be broadcast on BBC Radio Leeds from Monday August 10th to Friday August 14th.

The Ensemble’s members are all Leeds folk who are over 60 years old and have gathered stories of the City’s older generation for the past 6 months, with a view to putting them together for a final production for the 2023 Cultural Festival.

We hope to gather 1001 stories by 2023,” says Artistic Director Alan Lyddiard. “The voice of the older generation is an important one; we are often left out of the narrative or are included only when we come under the category of ‘vulnerable’ and there’s a lot more to us than that!

Drivetime presenter Stephanie Hirst was interviewing Alan when the idea for a collaboration came to him and Stephanie was immediately engaged by the notion of the ‘Talking Heads’ style.

She said: “This is such a wonderful idea. We have much to learn from the older generation.”

Five members of the Ensemble have written the pieces and will also read them, each one no longer than 2 minutes, telling stories of sadness, comedy and intrigue.

Alan continued: “We are delighted to work with BBC Radio Leeds on this project. Both companies aim to represent the City and its people, so the partnership works beautifully.”

You can listen to the stories on BBC Radio Leeds from Monday 10th to Friday 14th August at on the Stephanie Hirst programme from 2pm  or tune in to 92.4FM

For more information on The Performance Ensemble and to read more stories visit

Please note that the company is currently operating in a safe and socially distanced way – and looking to recruit new members and collect more stories that will help them create unique performance events in the coming years.

No experience in theatre or the arts is needed, although you must live in Leeds and be over 60 years old. Some of the members work in theatre but there are people from many different backgrounds and diverse cultures.

For more information and to get involved with The Performance Ensemble or call 07846 575 377

Alan Lyddiard is Artistic Director of The Performance Ensemble. He was a theatre and film director for 40 years and formed the theatre company in 2014 when he was 65. It now has a core company of 35 people and a wider membership of over 100.

Photographs provided by Faye Dawson PR.

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