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May 17, 2013

Playwright Fin Kennedy was thrust into the heart of the debate about arts funding when he produced a report—called In Battalions, a title taken from a quote from Hamlet—with professional researcher Helen Campbell Pickford into the effects of cuts in public funding to theatres on their production of and development of new writing.

In this episode, Fin talks about the origins of the report in a conversation he had with UK Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries Ed Vaisey and about its findings, as well as speculating on how this will continue to affect the theatre sector and on the motivations behind cutting an area of the UK budget so small that it will have a barely-noticeable effect on the UK deficit.

Fin Kennedy is an award-winning playwright and theatre blogger whose plays are produced in the UK and US. In the UK, he has written for Soho Theatre, Sheffield Crucible, Southwark Playhouse, Half Moon Theatre, The Red Room, Birmingham Rep and BBC Radio 4.

Fin also has many years’ experience teaching playwriting in schools, youth clubs, and universities. Since 2007 he has been writer-in-residence at Mulberry School in East London, for whom he has co-founded a theatre company and written four new plays which premièred at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

He is also a visiting lecturer at Goldsmiths College, a member of the Writers’ Guild Theatre Committee and an occasional contributor to The Guardian and The Stage.

For more information, see his blog at www.finkennedy.co.uk.