Arts & Culture Events

Calling all Artists!

By John Charlton

Applications open for 2018 Offbeat Festival

Oxford Playhouse and Arts at the Old Fire Station have announced the return of Offbeat. Now in its third year, this vibrant festival at the heart of Oxford showcases the best in fringe theatre from across the UK in nine action-packed days.

Running from 22 – 30 June, Offbeat 2018 will see more than 50 performances across six stages, and for the first time will incorporate Oxford Playhouse’s 640 seat auditorium. The festival aims for at least a quarter of the programme to be from local artists and companies, and all the performances are of works never before seen in Oxford. The vast majority of the tickets will be priced at £10 or less, allowing as many people as possible to access this hugely exciting festival.

Oxford Playhouse and Arts at the Old Fire Station are inviting performers from across the country to apply and everything from work in progress to established productions will be considered. To apply to take part please visit and submit your application before 30 January 2017.

Jeremy Spafford, Director at the Old Fire Station said today “We love Offbeat. It is a moment when two great organisations come together to bring some of the best small scale contemporary work to Oxford audiences. We’re hoping even more artists apply this year because we want this festival to grow and grow.”

Louise Chantal, Director at Oxford Playhouse, said “Offbeat really has grown fast to become a significant event in the calendar for theatre makers in Oxfordshire and beyond. It’s thrilling to introduce such a range of brand new performance to our city.”

Launched in 2016, Offbeat was born to bring a mini ‘Edinburgh Festival’ to Oxford. Last year’s festival nearly doubled the audience from the inaugural year to more than 2600, with performance highlights including Boris the Musical; comedians Mark Thomas, Chris Coltrane and BBC 4’s Viv Groskop; site-specific theatre Wrecked set in a crashed car; performances for families including the sold out The Light House Keeper’s Lunch alongside Oxford-based artists including Playhouse Playmaker alumni Karim Khan’s Orange Juice and Human Story Theatre’s The Fourth Dog.

To see highlights from the 2017 festival visit:
For more information on the festival visit: