Starfish Theatre Company was a project for adults with learning disability. The project was based in Carlisle and ran for seven years. The project was funded by Northern Rock Foundation and was delivered in partnership with Carlisle Day Services. Starfish Company Members led and produced their own work which was then performed throughout the North West region. By the end of the project the company had 18 members. All the productions were devised by company members and were developed through exploration of drama, music, visual arts and improvisation.

Company members worked alongside professional artists, who enabled them to develop the creative skills to achieve their ideas and aspirations.

Company members performed at conferences in Manchester, Carlisle and Whitehaven. Theatre performances were toured around the county. Starfish Theatre Company performed at Theatre by the Lake in Keswick, The Brewery Arts Centre in Kendal, various venues in Carlisle and Cockermouth. Starfish Theatre Company also delivered workshops in schools.

Two of company members had art work selected for the Mencap In the Frame exhibition at Tate Modern.

By the end of the project Starfish Theatre company members had developed and toured 7 original productions, written poetry and scripts, made films and animations, composed new music, delivered and devised workshops for schools and colleges and had engaged new audiences across Cumbria and the North West.

“I have enjoyed every minute and have done things that I never through that I would do. I had never done any acting before, it’s been great.”
Andy Murphy