»Nest Residencies [updated December 2020]

A Nest Residency is time, space and conversation with other artists, and is designed to allow you to think, experiment and take a punt on one of those 'What if...?' ideas.

Nest Residencies cannot fund your fully-formed project proposal - there are lots of other funds that might support that. We are interested in your idea - and why you are interested in us, in The Nest and in exploring something together.


» FAQs

Why is Talking Birds running this programme?

We want to support the burgeoning creative life of our home city and in particular create the right conditions for d/Deaf and disabled artists to develop their work. We want to encourage and mentor under-represented artists, give them space and time to experiment, and to allow this exchange to grow us and our creative community at The Nest (which will be our new home from 2021).

Who can apply for Nest residency programme?

Midlands-based d/Deaf or disabled artist or any Midlands-based artist or small company. When Covid allows us to once more expand the programme, we will again be open to d/Deaf and disabled artists from across the UK coming to make work in Coventry.

When’s the deadline?

Applications will open again in Spring 2021 and we will have a rolling deadline. We’re looking to support residencies on an ongoing basis until 2023.

What spaces are available for working in?

From Spring 2021 we hope to be able to offer covid-secure working spaces at The Nest building, our new home.

Will I get paid for my time?

We don't believe artists should work for free. The whole point of a Nest Residency is to allow you time, space and conversations to help you experiment and develop your idea - so we will offer you financial support for your time, in addition to a project mentor/sounding board and other appropriate support if needed.

I’m on benefits, can I still apply?

Yes, we’ll do our best to make the residency work for you,

I’ve got a full time job, can I still apply?

You need to be able to commit enough time to your residency to make it worth while, but if you can give us a plan for your working pattern that works around your other work, that’s fine by us.

I’m a student, can I still apply?

Current Undergraduates are not eligible, but postgrads will be considered as long as you can demonstrate that it will fit around your studies.

I’ve got particular access needs, how will these be taken into account?

We’ll do our level best to tailor the opportunity to you.

I’m a disabled artist based outside the region but interested in developing work in Coventry. Can I get help with travel and accommodation?

Yes. Once we are able to open the programme up again fully (and Covid-safely) we will welcome applications from disabled artists based outside the region, but we'd want to know what it is about working in the city and with Talking Birds that is integral to your project, as these residencies are designed to help grow our creative community in Coventry.

If I Hatch an idea that I then want to take to Fledgling or First Flight stage, can I reapply?


Who is funding this?

Arts Council, England, through its support of Talking Birds as a National Portfolio Organisation.

Who/what is Talking Birds?

Talking Birds is a nationally renowned, Coventry-based company of artists specialising in Theatre of Place.

What are Talking Birds’ core values and do mine have to align with them?

We believe in making work in an environmentally sustainable way that puts access at the heart of its process - you can find out more on our website. We’d like to know why The Nest is the place for your idea and how your residency will be consistent with Talking Birds' values and/or show a commitment to exploring them, as these residencies are designed to help grow our creative community in Coventry. In a Nest Residency, we want to work with you, to support you to experiment and to try some things out. We are interested in your idea, and in why you think that idea is best explored with us here at The Nest

What is Talking Birds track record in supporting artists in this way?

On top of running the Nest Residency Programme since 2018, Talking Birds has a track record of curating project development and residency opportunities for other artists. We previously ran the FarGoSpace programme in (what’s now) FarGo Village, we run a series of open auditions for performers called Open Cast, and we convene the F13 Artists’ Network. We have also developed a mobile captioning tool called the Difference Engine to help make experimental performances (by us and other artists/companies) more accessible. Running the Nest residency programme is also a great excuse for Bird-related puns.

Will my project supporter/mentor be one of the TBs team?

Yes if we have the right skills to support you - but we will work with you to identify what sort of support you need and may draw on one of our many partner/collaborators/networks to work with you too. In-house expertise and interests include: creative development, theatre-making, site-specific work, design, composition and sound design, making work accessible, strategic planning, evaluation, finance and funding.

Sounds brilliant! How do I apply?

Applications will open again in Spring 2021.

links to the difference enginelinks to Nest Artists Residencieslinks to The Art Crowd