Upstairs at The Western is a community theatre located in the heart of Leicester’s West End, above, you guessed it, The Western pub. With a new board of directors and a new autumn season just around the corner, we caught up with Kit Fordham to find out more.

The new season launch is soon at Upstairs at the Western, what shows have you got coming up?
We’re really excited to be kicking off the season with our Katie Arnstein double bill of ‘Bicycles & Fish’ and ‘Sexy Lamp’ from Wednesday 11th to Friday 13th September. Katie has just finished a storming run at the Edinburgh Fringe and we couldn’t be happier to have her as our first performer under our new Directors. We’ll have local street food vendors, The Loving Kebab, doing vegan kebabs before the show, a pop up angel card readings and great beer from our lovely home pub so our launch on Wednesday is a perfect opportunity to come down and find out more about us!

Tell us a little more about Upstairs at the Western for those who aren’t familiar?
Upstairs at the Western is a 42-seat black box theatre which is above The Western pub in the heart of Leicester’s West End. We programme two seasons each year, filled with theatre, comedy, spoken word, poetry and improv. Our aim is for more than 50% of our programme to be female and non-binary artists, and we’re especially keen to work with local companies.

How can people get involved with the shows you put on?
We have shows from Wednesday to Saturday almost every week – you can pop in to pick up our brochure from the Western or find it in various locations across the city. You can also get in touch with us via our social media or website – we’re always keen to hear from our audiences. 

How has the support and response been from the arts community in Leicester?
Upstairs at the Western has always had wonderful, supportive audiences and we hope that under our new board of Directors we can offer something a bit different and hope to extend our community reach a little wider. The arts community in the West End is especially lovely and we can’t wait to connect with our neighbours in this upcoming and future seasons. 

What’s your favourite thing about being involved with Upstairs at the Western?
My personal favourite part is the fact that Upstairs at the Western is actually my local theatre. I’ve lived off Fosse Road for the past 10 years and I work as a freelance stage manager so although I’ve worked locally and across the country it’s so lovely to be putting my time into something truly within and interested in the local community. 

How can people find out what’s coming up and buy tickets?
You can find all the info and ticket links on on website or on any of our social media. We’re all really looking forward to meeting our audiences so we’ll be attending the launch shows so people can meet us face to face next week. 

The autumn season at Upstairs at The Western starts on Wednesday 11 September. Keep up to date with the latest news via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram