Departure Lounge Festival 2019

Thursday 18 - Saturday 20 July 2019

Produced by In Good CompanyDeparture Lounge Festival is the arts festival for groundbreaking work in the heart of the country. Every corner of Derby Theatre and beyond will be brought to life by extraordinary performances, workshops and discussion. 

We reimagine what a theatrical experience can be and are committed to supporting curious minds and artists. There will be the regular mix of Edinburgh previews, the best of the East Midlands blended with the UK’s most exciting artists and companies, sharing works-in-progress, events in the S.H.E.D outside, immersive and intimate performances and award-winning touring work.

We’ve kept our ticket prices low, as we know artists and audiences aren’t always loaded, so check out our weekender and day passes below. If you just want to pop along to an individual event nothing costs more than a tenner! At Departure Lounge you'll always be In Good Company.

Please Note: Festival line-up is subject to change. 

The Line-Up 

Thursday 18 July

Thursday - Departure Lounge

Workshop - We Are All (Made Of) Stars: Participatory Performance Across Borders Symposium with MAYK, 12pm - 4pm

An afternoon of conversation about making participatory performance across borders. This practical session will include reflections and learning from MAYK’s recent international touring project.

Edinburgh Preview - Opal Fruits by Holly Beasley-Garrigan, 7pm - 8pm 

Hot off the back of a critically acclaimed debut at VAULT Festival, Opal Fruits is an unreliable solo show about the fetishisation of the feral female - about working-class women and the trouble with 90's nostalgia.

Edinburgh Preview (Untapped Award Winners) - Tokyo Rose by Burnt Lemon, 8:30pm - 9:30pm

Turn back the dial from 2019 to 1949. Iva Toguri d'Aquino stands accused of treason in one of the most controversial trials in American history...

The S.H.E.D - Inspiration Exchange by Third Angel, 30 minute slots between 4pm & 6pm

This is a simple story-swapping performance. Together we will exchange a personal catalogue of inspirations to create an eclectic, multi-contributor library of ideas, incidents and events. 
Limited Availability.

Friday 19 July

Friday - Departure Lounge

Talk - The Arts: A Shifting Landscape Panel Discussion, 11am - 12:30pm

Chaired by Lyn Gardner. Practitioners, artists and audiences come together for a fascinating and insightful discussion with leaders from a range of inspirational arts organisations in the UK.

Food - Networking Lunch, 12:30pm - 1:30pm

After The Arts: A Shift Landscape Panel Discussion, this is a chance for programmers and artists to chat while you chow.

Work In Progress/ Midlands Work - Ish... by Georgie Jones, 1:30pm - 2:20pm

Combining spoken word, stand up and storytelling set to a 90’s and 00’s pop and hip hop soundtrack, Georgie takes a break from haphazardly stumbling through adulthood to revisit first times, second chances, push up bras and waxing disasters in order to figure out the things she thought she would have known by now. 

Work In Progress/Midlands Work - REPRESENT: Queer Artist Showcase, 3:30pm - 5pm

A celebratory showcase featuring three groundbreaking performances from LGBTQ+ theatre-makers.

Work In Progress/Midlands Work - Spoken Word Showcase, 5:30pm - 7pm 

Take a break from the festival chaos and sink your teeth into a fantabulous Friday afternoon of poetry and wordplay.

Preview/Midlands Work - All of Me by Caroline Horton, 7:30pm - 8:30pm

Olivier Award nominee Caroline Horton reunites with director Alex Swift (Mess, How to Win Against History) to bring you this intimate and absurd exploration of wanting to live, wanting to die and what can happen if we sit together with the dark.

Work In Progress/Midlands Work - See How They Run by Not Too Tame, 9pm - 11pm

Award winning Not Too Tame return to take you on a magical mystery ride with their unique brand of raucous theatre in a show inspired by characters from the The Beatles music.

The S.H.E.D - Plea Bargain by Jake Bowen, 20 minute slots between 12:30pm & 6:30pm

A 20 minute, one-to-one performance based on Jake’s experience of the criminal justice system. You the audience take the role of a solicitor and with the limited time you have must find the facts and pass your judgement. Limited Availability.


Saturday 20 July

Saturday - Departure Lounge

Workshop - International Producing Masterclass, 11am - 12:30pm

Want to learn about producing internationally? Then come along Saturday morning and do just that. Be a part of a series of international events taking place during 2019, including an exciting residency in November.

The S.H.E.D - S.H.E.D Cinema - Commissioned by In Good Company, 12:30pm - 1:30pm

S.H.E.D will be premiering at Departure Lounge Festival as an outdoor cinema, in partnership with Luigi Galimberti, Transnational Dialogues, In Good Company, InDialogue and University of Derby.

Work In Progress - Motherland by Jo Tyabji, 2pm - 3pm

Motherland: punching fascists in the face through the medium of drag. Warning: this is a visceral full bodied dragged up queertastic howl of a show, and it makes no apology for it.

Work In Progress - Extraordinary Wall o̶f̶ ̶S̶i̶l̶e̶n̶c̶e̶ by Ad Infinitum, 3:30pm - 4:30pm

Ad Infinitum combine the company’s signature style of physical storytelling with the beauty of British Sign Language. Extraordinary Wall o̶f̶ ̶S̶i̶l̶e̶n̶c̶e̶ will facilitate an encounter between Deaf and hearing communities to expose the barrier that has stood between them for far too long.

Midlands Work - Ducks Don't Have Teeth. Do They? by Theatre Makers, 5pm - 6pm & 6:15pm - 7:00pm

You’re 18. You’re 100. What could you have in common? A show full of unlikely friendship and questions about ageing.

Edinburgh Preview/Midlands Work - Yours Sincerely by Quick Duck Theatre, 7:30pm - 8:30pm

Based on real life correspondences; storytelling and lipsync cabaret collide in this queer coming-of-age comedy about the complications of 21st-century communication.

Edinburgh Preview - Unfortunate by Fat Rascal, 9:30pm - 10:40pm

Disney villain. Octo-woman. Plus-size icon. But who is the woman behind the tentacles? From the multi-award winning Fat Rascal Theatre, creators of hit musicals Buzz and Vulvarine, comes the untold story of Ursula the sea witch. A musical parody.

The Beach Party, 10:45pm - 1am

Join us in the Upper Foyer after Unfortunate for great music, a few drinks and networking.

Prices and Passes

Our festival passes couldn’t be better value so we highly recommend picking up a weekend or day pass in order to get the most bang for your buck! Alternatively all events can be booked individually and everything is under £10! 

Earlybird Festival Pass - Book by Friday 31 May

£60 (£90 after 31 May) 

DT Friends Festival Pass          

£60 (if you are a member of our Friends scheme)        

Friday Day Pass - £35

Saturday Day Pass - £45

Access Pass - £42 (This Pass is for people who will benefit from our BSL, Captioned or Close Captioned service)

Book your Festival Pass

Individual Performances & Events                                                        

£9.50 for full shows
£7 for workshops
£5.50 for work-in-progress pieces
£8 for REPRESENT showcase
Free for panel discussion, networking lunch and symposium

Book for individual events by following the links in the line up section above.


Departure Lounge welcomes all customers and we are working hard to make as much of the festival as we can accessible to all - including many events with captioning or BSL options.

Access Pass - see 7 shows that are either BSL interpreted, Captioned or Close Captioned for only £42! (This pass is for people who will benefit from our BSL, Captioned or Close Captioned service). 

Please view our guide, detailing accessible festival route's across Derby Theatre. 

All of Me

Captioned by Difference Engine: Friday 19 July, 7:30pm - 8:30pm

Masterclass on Producing Internationally

BSL Interpreted: Saturday 20 July, 11:00am - 12:30pm

Extraordinary Wall o̶f̶ ̶S̶i̶l̶e̶n̶c̶e

Captioned and BSL Interpreted: Saturday 20 July, 3:30pm - 4:30pm

Ducks Don't Have Teeth. Do They?

Captioned by Difference Engine and BSL Interpreted: Saturday 20 July, 5:00pm - 6:00pm

Yours Sincerely

Captioned by Difference Engine and BSL Interpreted: Saturday 20 July, 7:30pm - 8:30pm


Captioned by Difference Engine and BSL Interpreted: Saturday 20 July, 9:30pm - 10:40pm

The Difference Engine is a portable tool which puts access into people’s pockets – sending captions and/or audio description to audience members’ mobile devices (smart phones/tablets) via the Difference Engine app.

Wheelchair Access
All our performance and workshop spaces are accessible and if you are a wheelchair user, a dedicated member of our cabin crew will be able to guide you through our access routes. 


View Accessible Performances


Explore Departure Lounge

Every summer Derby Theatre is transformed into a vibrant festival hub and this year is no different. Here’s a run-down of what you can find around the theatre during the festival: 

Boarding Gate – Our Festival Box Office

Garden Stage – one of three festival performance spaces (Main Stage)

Studio Stage –  one of three festival performance spaces 

Departure Gate – our brand new third performance space for experimentation and work-in-progress pieces in our transformed bistro

Rehearsal Bunker – our space for workshops

Fuelling Depot - Our ground floor café serving in-flight food day and night 

Derbados – Our outside bar

Customs – Our multi-functional foyer space for networking, performance and our artist hot desk hub, for those who need to catch up on a few emails in between shows