misunderstanding each other since 2003

Network Structure

Origins of the Fence

Initially a UK, collaboration between Writernet, The British Council and Creative Renewal, in association with the international network for contemporary performing arts, (IETM), the Fence was launched with an international writers’ retreat in John Osborne’s old house at the Hurst in Shropshire in October 2003, and then as a Meeting Group at the IETM in Birmingham exploring the practice of contemporary dramatic writing in many culturally diverse European contexts.

Alongside Jonathan Meth, Sarah Dickenson, Gabriel Gbadmosi, Kaite O’Reilly and Peter Arnott were key to its inception.

Purpose of the Fence

Alain KazThe Fence was founded on the core principles of:

  • the importance of the playwright
  • that in practice, diversity and mobility are the same thing
  • and that through engagement with others our own work develops.

The network exists as a space to think, to be and to do.

The Fence aims to open up routes to work opportunities for playwrights seeking to extend their work beyond their own national and infrastructural boundaries.

The founding aim was to create a network that was based primarily on relationships, rather than scripts and translations, that would enable people to come together and work out for themselves what they wanted to do together.

Fence structure

The Fence started as a British-ignited enterprise and has since grown to be owned by everyone across the network. From 2018 The Fence will be head-quartered in Stockholm and formally registered as a Swedish organisation.

The Fence is curated / directed by Jonathan Meth The current Board comprises: Oladipo Agboluaje, Fred Fortas, Kamelia Nickolova, Aiste Ptakauske, Edward (Buffalo) Bromberg, and Sara Shaarawi.