Untapped FAQs


We know that going to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is a big commitment.

We've tried to answer as many questions around the Untapped Award as we can, and we'll regularly add to this list if the same questions come up frequently via email or through social media.

Before contacting us, see if your questions are answered here. If you've still got a burning query, please email us here. If you are just burning however, please call a doctor.

Do you have to commit to performing for the entire month of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2024? Could we just do part of it or just come up at weekends?

The Untapped Award is only open to ensembles and theatre companies who are wanting to perform for the full Edinburgh Festival Fringe

We’re from outside of London. If we’re shortlisted, do we need to come to London to perform as part of the rehearsal room showcase? 

Yes, the shortlisting days will take place in Central London, and we’ll cover the travel costs (or a reasonable portion of those costs) for all groups travelling from outside of London.

But I hate London. Can’t we just do a Zoom presentation?

Sorry, no, we need to meet everyone. The best way for us to get a sense of your work is to see it live in the rehearsal room, and it's a great chance for you to meet all of the partners you'll be working with should you be selected. And everyone basically hates London.

We want to apply but we can’t make the shortlist rehearsal showcase in January.

Unfortunately, we need to see rehearsal room extracts from all the shortlisted shows and meet the companies. This is the only time the full selection panel are meeting, so we need you to be there in person.

We are a comedy troupe, can we apply? 

No. This award is open to theatre ensembles and companies only. 

I’m a solo performer with a one-person show. Can I apply? 

Afraid not. This award has been created to support ensembles and larger theatre companies to take their work to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Therefore, we’re only looking for groups whose shows will have a minimum of two performers on stage. 

What do you mean by ensemble or theatre company? 

An ensemble is a group of artists who work together, over a period of time, to create theatre that has a distinct voice and language. At New Diorama, we support companies who are not just coming together to make one single production, but who have an ongoing and growing artistic relationship.

For Untapped, we do accept debut shows from new companies, as well as shows from more established mid-career groups.

The production we’d like to propose has been to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe before, are we eligible to apply? 

No. We’re looking for work that has never previously run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. 

We won’t have a finished show by the shortlisting day, is that a problem? 

That's totally fine! We just want to see a taste of your work and a short extract which will indicate the quality and direction the final production will be heading in. 

This shortlist day, how much technical support will be on offer? Our show has lasers in it and a large-

Let me stop you there. The shortlisting day is so that we can meet you all and see a little bit of your work to get a flavour of what you'll be hoping to take to Edinburgh. The reason we do it in a rehearsal room and not a theatre space is to reduce the pressure on artists towards what we're expecting to see. We want a lo-fi, working light extract of something. Keep it simple. No lasers.

When will we hear if we have been shortlisted?  

The shortlist will be announced on 15th January. However, before this public announcement every applicant to the award will be notified as to whether we’re taking them forward or not. 

If we miss the deadline, are we able to email our application to you? 

We're afraid not.

Our company is based outside the UK, can we apply? 

For Untapped, we’re only accepting applications from companies based in the UK i.e. England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. 

Our company has two shows we think would be perfect but we can’t decide which to submit, can we submit both? 

Yes, but make sure they’re separate entries on the portal so they can be assessed independently.  

Our show has already been published alongside a previous run, can we still apply? 

For this year's award, we are not able to accept applications for shows that have previously been published. If you have any questions about the specifics of your situation, please get in touch with [email protected] and we'd be happy to have a chat.

Who owns the show if I win the Untapped Award? Do I need to hand over all my IP if I win?

In short, no. As part of winning the Untapped Award 2024, both NDT and Underbelly will ask for the opportunity to support any further development or future life of the show and have first right of refusal over any future iteration of that show.

As part of the award, all the winners get a publishing and licensing deal with Concord Theatricals / Samuel French - this means they'd publish the playtext and work with you to represent and license the amateur rights of future productions of your work. This will be contracted with Concord Theatricals separately on industry standard terms.

But ultimately, it's your show, you own it. We just want to support you to take it as far as it can go. 

The Fringe can be a very pressured environment for artists - particularly artists of colour. Can this award really solve all those well-being problems?

In short, no we can't. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is a complicated beast - with huge rewards on offer for artists but also real pitfalls and challenges. This award is for artists who want a chance at accessing those but otherwise couldn't afford to. However, we're wanting to do everything we can to make this the best experience possible for everyone we're supporting.

We've budgeted to provide well-being support for our selected artists, which we'll deliver based on the needs and requirements of each of the selected shows - discussed and agreed in advance of the festival. There will also be workshops and events for the Untapped companies and other companies to access.

And we'll be there, cheering you on and listening to your needs. Working together to make the Fringe feel just that bit more manageable.

I’m over 50, am I still allowed to apply? 

Yes! Of course. There are no age restrictions or limits on any of our opportunities at NDT. From 18 to 118, you’re eligible to apply!

I’m 119, am I still allowed to apply? 


I’m a student. Can I apply? 


I appear to have absent-mindedly applied for (and then accidentally won) the Untapped Award. Am I legally obligated to now produce an award-worthy show and take it the Fringe to huge critical and audience success?

Sorry, but yes.