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Digital Programme: The UK Drill Project

The ensemble dressed in black, some with face coverings, stand in front of some flats and look down the camera.

HighRise Entertainment: The UK Drill Project
The Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust Award
Thu 3 – Sat 12 Nov 2022, The Pit

Welcome to the Barbican. It’s a great pleasure to be able to introduce you to HighRise Entertainment, a company at the frontline of youth arts engagement across the UK. They come to the Barbican as joint winners of the 2022 Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust Award which supports the development of theatre-makers engaged in bold, challenging and innovative performance. The company champions the use of rap music, theatre, subcultures, politics and heritage in their work. Their latest stage production, The UK Drill Project, challenges myths about UK Drill music and its links to crime, looking at the social forces that shape a young person’s life. Some early exploration of this show took place here in the Pit Theatre as part of the Barbican’s artist development programme Open Lab, so we are very pleased to now be co-producing this work with the Trust and HighRise. The Barbican would like to thank the trustees of the OSBTT Award for their continuing generous support.

Toni Racklin,
Head of Theatre and Dance, Barbican

The Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust Award aims to help the development of emerging practitioners engaged in bold, challenging and innovative performance and to encourage the new generation of creative artists. It is awarded annually to a company or individual to create a show either for The Pit or a site-responsive show to take place in east London.

Creative team

(in alphabetical order)

V, George Ché Gordon
No Safety Fahad Shaft 
Yannis, Bars, Kick Back Gerel Falconer
Lulu, Deborah Lauryn Louise
TJ Nilez 

OT, Railings, Sweet Frank Oliver Tunstall 
Musician Skanda Sabbagh 

Creative team
Writer and Director Dominic Garfield
(with additional material and lyrics by the cast)
Executive Producer for HighRise Libby Liburd
Artistic Associates Fahad Shaft, Gerel Falconer, Oliver Tunstall

Exhibition Curator Sampira Al-Fihri
Executive Research Consultant Ciaran Thapar
Composer Skanda Sabbagh

Executive Music Director Kwame ‘KZ’ Kwei-Armah Jnr
Production Manager for HighRise Cai Taylor
Artistic Associate and Collaborator Westerfield Oreluwa Ibikunle Shoderu
Vocal Director Toni ‘Reese’ Robinson
Movement Director Yami Löfvenberg

Fight Director Adrian Derrick-Palmer
Lighting Designer Simisola Majekodunmi

Video Designer Dan Light
Assistant Company Producer Lesley Rietta Cobbina
Assistant Director Ellis
Stage Manager Daisy Francis-Bryden
Exhibition DJ DJ Kaylee Kay
Strategic Producer Support Tracy Gentles

Music and Sound Engineer Duncan 'Soulecta' Burton
Videographer & Additional Video Content Creator Mary Melodies
Additional Video Content Creator Oliver Hunter
Production Designer Johnny Savage
Costume Hoodrich
Assistant Stage Manager (Placement) Kimora Thompson
Design Assistant (Placement) Peiyao Wang
Marketing Consultant for HighRise Holly Adomah Thompson
Research Consultant Franklyn Addo
Additional Music and Research Collaborator Ishmatic Beats
Research Collaborators Jhemar Jonas, Demetri Addison, Henry OniludeMichael Mbozo and Michael Lamot 
BSL Interpreter Tara Asher
BSL Interpreter Grace Buckle
Post-show talk BSL Interpreter Rachel Jones

Original concept developed with support from Joseph Barnes-Phillips

Presented and co-produced by the Barbican

Production acknowledgements
The UK Drill Project was devised by the company, alongside extensive research, hours of interviews and the generosity of our many expert contributors.

With special thanks to: Hoodrich for providing costume for The UK Drill Project and video trailer, No Comment; Cambridge Junction and young artists from the Beats, Trials & Tribulations project at Romsey Mills (you can see their music videos, created with HighRise, on the screens in the exhibition); Tide Films who shot the Beats, Trials & Tribulations videos and No Comment.


For the Barbican

Chief Executive Officer Claire Spencer 
Artistic Director Will Gompertz 
Director of Operations and Buildings Jonathon Poyner 
Director of Development Natasha Harris 
Director of People, Inclusion and Culture Ali Mirza 
Senior Executive Assistant to Claire Spencer and Will Gompertz Jo Daly

Theatre Department 
Head of Theatre and Dance Toni Racklin  
Senior Production Manager Simon Bourne 
Producers Leanne Cosby, Jill Shelley and Fiona Stewart 
Assistant Producers Anna Dominian, Saxon Mudge and Mali Siloko 
Production Managers Jamie Maisey and Lee Tasker 
Technical Managers Steve Daly, Jane Dickerson, Nik Kennedy, Martin Morgan and Stevie Porter  
Stage Managers Lucinda Hamlin and Charlotte Oliver 
Technical Supervisors John Gilroy, Jamie Massey, Adam Parrott, Tom Salmon and Chris Wilby 
PA to Head of Theatre David Green 
Production Administrator Caroline Hall 
Production Assistant Andrew Pellett 
Technicians Kendell Foster, Burcham Johnson, Christian Lyons, Charlie Mann, Josh Massey, Matt Nelson, Heather Readdy and Lawrence Sills 
Stage Door Julian Fox and aLbi Gravener 
Creative Learning Producer Lauren Brown 
Creative Learning Assistant Producer Rikky Onefeli 
Marketing Manager (Theatre & Dance) Kyle Bradshaw 
Marketing Assistant (Theatre & Dance) Rebecca Moore  
PR Consultant (Theatre & Dance) Anna Arthur
Communications Assistant (Theatre & Dance and Cinema) Sumayyah Sheikh 


Creating the show

We began working on this piece in 2019 and were talking about a sub-genre people knew very little about. It was being demonised by the government and press with criminal injunctions and criminal records served to artists for their music and lyrics. Today, UK drill music dominates the charts, radio, fashion, social media and UK street culture. While the media move onto their next hot topic, what isn’t understood is the part to play this music and the culture that surrounds it now has in the criminal justice system. With young people having their involvement in drill videos and social media presence used against them in UK courts weekly, it feels like a massively important time to tell this eye-opening story through original music, video design and verbatim testimony from artists, youth workers, criminal barristers and young people across the UK.

Dominic Garfield, writer and director

It's been cathartic and a pleasure to help create The UK Drill Project with HighRise over the last three years. British youth culture is in an exciting but strange place. UK rap and drill music is hitting the charts and commanding an expanding global audience. But it's easy to forget that these genres are being policed more than ever before, mostly behind closed doors, in the education system and in the courts. There are more rappers in London getting record deals than ever, yet there are also more rappers getting sent to prison because of lyrics they wrote. Using tragedy and comedy, and by constructing a moving narrative that's true to life, HighRise are proving, once again, how the social realities of young people in the inner-city can be explored with nuance and delicacy on stage. This play is an IRL antidote to the digital remoteness of our new world.

Ciaran Thapar, author of Cut Short: Youth Violence, Loss and Hope in the City and collaborator on The UK Drill Project

About HighRise

HighRise is an award-winning multi-arts collective that represents unheard communities and stories of contemporary Inner-City Britain.

With rap music, theatre, subcultures, politics and heritage as the heartbeat of its work, HighRise is at the frontline of youth arts engagement across the UK where its productions, programmes, consultancy and mentoring schemes offer deep engagement in forgotten areas of Britain. Partners have included Nike, the National Theatre, the Barbican, Centre Point and The Metropolitan Police and specialised art conservatoires including East 15 Acting School, Central School of Speech and Drama and Northampton University.

The company has been seen and featured across media including BBC, BBC Radio, GQ, the Guardian, New York Times, Reuters, London Live and The Evening Standard.

In 2020, HighRise launched NewGens, a unique training programme which provides a safe, creative space for young, multi-disciplinary artists aged 16-25 facing access issues into theatre and the arts. NewGens music and theatre alumni can be seen working and studying at BBC, New Diorama Theatre, RADA, Guildhall, Royal Welsh and on radio, TV and film.


Performers of The UK Drill Project stand around a car.


A man wearing a face covering holds white flowers in front of a block of flats. Three men stand in a group behind him.

Listen: UK Drill essentials playlist

Dive into this Spotify playlist charting some UK Drill essential tracks curated by Dominic Garfield, director of The UK Drill Project. Featuring 22 songs from artists including Abra Cadabra, Headie One, Digga D and many more.

Panel discussion

Wed 16 Nov, 7.30pm
Panel discussion hosted by Ciaran Thapar (£5, plus 60p booking fee)

On Wednesday 16 November at 7.30pm, youth worker, author and executive research consultant, Ciaran Thapar hosts a panel discussion about the development and themes of HighRise Entertainment’s The UK Drill Project, and uses the performance as a launchpad to hold a stimulating and urgent conversation.

Drawing from a range of expert voices from across youth work, criminal justice and the music industry, the panel will discuss the highs and lows of UK drill’s musical evolution, its roots and risks as a form of expression for young people in the city, and its continued criminalisation in British courts.

Ciaran Thapar will be joined by barrister Elena Papamichael, community advocate Franklyn Addo, DJ and radio presenter Kenny Allstar, and the creator and director of The UK Drill Project, Dominic Garfield.

Find out more and book: 

£5 Young Barbican tickets

Aged 14-25? Sign up for free and unlock £5 exhibition tickets for you and a mate



Ché Gordon
V, George

Ché Gordon is an actor from Croydon, South London. Previously he featured in HighRise’s The Concrete Jungle Book at The Pleasance Theatre. Ché joined HighRise’s youth associate company, NewGens, when he was just 16. His only prior stage experience was studying GCSE Drama. He is excited to be taking on his second professional role on stage.
Insta: @c.slickz

Fahad Shaft
No Safety

Fahad Shaft is an actor, director, rapper, mentor and facilitator from South London (which he calls the capital of London). His work as an actor includes The UK Drill Project at the Barbican; Lil.Miss.Lady for HighTide, at the Roundhouse and Latitude; Young Othello at the Courtyard; and The Concrete Jungle Book at artsdepot and the Edinburgh Fringe. He was also assistant director on a revamp of The Concrete Jungle Book at the Pleasance and Chords of Protest at Camden People’s Theatre. Fahad’s mentoring and facilitating skills have seen him lead workshops around the country for young people in venues including Cambridge Junction, Camden Youth Theatre, Roundhouse, Spotlight, Centrepoint, artsdepot, Chickenshed and Shoreditch Town Hall. He is currently in the process of building a time machine to bring the glory days back to Arsenal FC.
Insta: @pullintricks
Twitter: @fahadshaft

Gerel Falconer
Yannis, Bars, Kick Back
Gerel Falconer, aka G, is an award-winning actor, writer and rapaturg at HighRise Theatre. The cross pollination of his passion for theatre and roots in underground music scenes has flourished throughout his work with HighRise. Developing storytelling through bars has earned him the title of ‘Rapaturg’, and puts him at the forefront of an evolving musical theatre industry. Work in theatre includes The UK Drill Project at the Barbican; Lil.Miss.Lady at the Roundhouse, with HighTide; The Concrete Jungle Book at artsdepot and the Edinburgh Fringe; Penny Lane at The Yard; Merryville at Camden People’s Theatre and Latitude; Black Power Desk at Brixton House, with the Old Vic 12; Alice in Wonderland at Brixton House; and Messiah at Stratford Circus, Streatham Space, Chapter Arts in Cardiff and the Bernie Grant Arts Centre. Hailing from north-west London, he studied at E15 Acting School, where he was the winner of the 2012 Lilian Bayliss Award. G is also a rapper known as G-R3AL R3AL G. His freestyles are yet to be matched.
Insta & Twitter: @gerelfalconer

Lauryn Louise
Lulu, Deborah

Lauryn Louise is an actress and singer-songwriter from north-west London. Her performance as Mowgli in The Concrete Jungle Book at the Pleasance Theatre for HighRise was her professional stage debut, achieving 4- and 5-star reviews. She is ecstatic to return to the stage in her second professional stage role in The UK Drill Project for HighRise.
Insta & Twitter: @laurynxlouise


Aaron Niles, better known by his artist name Nilez, is a UK-born rapper, songwriter, musician, producer and actor with a Barbadian heritage. He grew up in London immersed in Caribbean and English culture, strongly influenced by his parent’s love for Caribbean-influenced music, hip hop, R&B, soul and rap culture. He is keen to connect to his audience with positive messages and a point of view linked to his experiences and those of his peers, by bringing together his different skills and attributes. He can complement beats in unpredictable and exciting ways, adapting between rap, drill and Afrobeats. This is Nilez’ debut performance with HighRise.
Insta: @nilezmusic

Oliver Tunstall
OT, Railings, Sweet Frank

Oliver Tunstall is an actor, director, facilitator and occasional music producer. London-based, but hailing from Derby, he graduated from East 15’s Acting and Contemporary Theatre course. Recent acting and directing work includes: The UK Drill Project at the Barbican; The Concrete Jungle Book for artsdepot and for Zoo at the Edinburgh Fringe; Young Othello at the Courtyard; Merryville at Camden People’s Theatre and Latitude; Sandpits Avenue at Zoo, and Big Smother at Brixton House. Oliver is also a beatboxer – he’s usually the third best in the room at any given time.
Insta & Twitter: @olivertunstall

Skanda Sabbagh
Live Musician

Skanda Sabbagh is a percussionist, music producer, educator and currently a Relationship Manager at Arts Council England. As a North African growing up in North London, he has been producing music and humbly influencing generations of artists since the early 2000s. Rooted in UK sound system culture, Skanda internalises jungle, grime, hip hop, trap and drill as branches of the same diasporic lineage with an inherent need to express cultural identity in hostile environments. As the former director of his family’s Youth Centre in Wood Green, North London, Skanda believes in unapologetically using creativity and embodied, process-led education methods to support young people to be resilient and navigate challenging circumstances. Skanda currently tours with Balimaya Project, a 16-piece West African Jazz fusion group that has shared stages with Seun Kuti, Roy Ayers and D Double E. He is also known for his highly intense playing of the Dounoun, a West African instrument.
Insta: @skandasabbagh @ic6_beats


Creative and Production team

Dominic Garfield
Writer and Director
Dominic Garfield is a writer, director, rapper and actor from North London. He is Artistic Director of HighRise. Writing and directing work includes Lil.Miss.Lady at the Roundhouse, with HighTide; The Concrete Jungle Book at artsdepot and The Pleasance; My Generation at the Orange Tree Theatre; Penny Lane at The Yard; Merryville at Camden People’s Theatre and Latitude; Saturnalia at Contact; Big Foot for Tara Arts and Black Theatre Live; and Big Smother at Brixton House. As a facilitator and young people’s director he has built programmes and delivered work with the National Theatre, Royal Exchange, Manchester, Shoreditch Town Hall, The Place, Cambridge Junction, Talawa, Cardboard Citizens and Coney. His work has taken him across the world. He uses a unique practice of blending playful, immersive and thought-provoking theatre with hip hop and grime music to connect and inspire young audiences and participants. With his experience in UK musicology, youth work and politics, Dominic leads the creative process on The UK Drill Project, bringing together some of the most exciting multi-talented artists and researchers to debate, devise and design this unrelentingly-honest and enlightening event. 
Twitter @DomGarfield

Libby Liburd
Executive Producer for HighRise
Libby is an actor, writer, producer and facilitator with more than two decades of experience in the industry across a range of different roles. She joined HighRise as a core team member in 2019, setting up and managing the young associate company, NewGens alongside producing The Concrete Jungle Book at the Pleasance and several successful one-off events. She is best known for her acclaimed solo show Muvvahood, addressing the stigma surrounding single motherhood and her play, Fighter, based on her personal experience as a boxer and the struggles that female boxers face in a male-dominated sport. As an actor, her work for TV includes EastEnders (as Erica) and Torchwood; and for theatre: Kings for Smoke & Oakum at the New Diorama and Bystanders for Cardboard Citizens. Libby Liburd has featured as a guest panellist on BBC Radio London, Radio 4 with Rev Richard Coles and Radio 5. She’s written for BBC Radio, The Stage, The Evening Standard, Standard Issue and the Guardian. She’s also a self-taught top nail tech.
Insta & Twitter: @LibbyLiburd

Lesley Rietta Cobbina
Assistant Company Producer
Lesley Rietta Cobbina is a London/Essex-based actor, producer and director. She graduated from the University of Northampton in 2021 with a BA Hons in Acting for Contemporary Devised Performance and recently starred as Baloo in HighRise’s Youth Associate Company, NewGens’ show The Concrete Jungle Book.
Insta: @lhcxo @Rietta_cobbina
Twitter: @itsonlylesley

Kwame 'KZ' Kwei-Armah Jnr
Executive Music Director

From North London, ‘KZ’ is an executive record producer, writer and content maker. Recent credits include Top Boy, the upcoming Black Panther film Wakanda Forever and Mood (BBC 3). He produces for and works with world-renowned and local artists such as Kelis, Amaarae, Wretch 32, Kojey Radical, Stormzy, Labrinth, Ms Banks and Emeli Sandé. KZ has established himself as a go-to name in London for his youthful and soulful blend of sounds and for his skill in discovering and developing both established and emerging artists.

Cai Taylor
Production Manager for HighRise
Cai Taylor is a graduate of East 15 Acting School’s Stage Management and Technical Theatre course, specialising in sound and lighting. Cai spent several years working on a wide variety of projects gaining knowledge in arts disciplines ranging from theatre to live events. He worked at multiple venues including the Lyric Theatre, Roundhouse, Harlow Playhouse and the Barbican; and festivals including Lewisham Festival, VAULT Festival, Bermondsey and Hackney Carnival and Latitude before being appointed as Head of Sound and Lighting at the Miskin Theatre. Cai continues to production manage for HighRise, helping produce some of their recent work such as The UK Drill Project, The Concrete Jungle Book, Lil.Miss.Lady and Merryville, among others. He is a keen adventurer spending his free time camping, rock climbing and fishing.

Ciaran Thapar
Executive Research Consultant
Ciaran Thapar is a youth worker and author based in London. He has nearly a decade’s experience working with young people across secondary schools, PRUs, youth services and the criminal justice system, and regularly delivers writing workshops for those at risk of permanent exclusion. Since 2020, he has consulted defence teams as an expert witness in criminal trials involving ‘gangs evidence’, social media content and music lyrics. Ciaran has written extensively about British multiculturalism, social inequality and London music for publications such as the Guardian, British GQ and The Face. His debut nonfiction book, Cut Short: Why We’re Failing Our Youth — and How to Fix It, a true story spanning five years about overcoming serious youth violence in south London, was published by Penguin UK in 2021 (available to buy in the Barbican shop).
Twitter: @ciaranthapar

Duncan 'Soulecta' Burton
Music and Sound Engineer
Duncan Burton is a music producer and DJ from North London. His musical journey began at a young age, learning to play the piano, drums and electric guitar before discovering electronic music and pursuing a career in DJing and music production. Fast forward to the present day and he has produced music for numerous short films, adverts and plays, including The Concrete Jungle Book. His biggest achievements are with his music project 'Soulecta', his alias for DJing and producing dance music. He has worked on numerous radio plays across BBC Radio 1, 1XTRA, Kiss FM and Rinse FM, as well as being supported by some of the industry's biggest names including DJ EZ, Majestic & DJ Target. As a DJ he has performed at some of the UK's biggest clubs and festivals including Ministry of Sound, Studio 338 and We Are Festival.
Twitter: @soulectamusic

Assistant Director
Ellis is a theatre-maker of Bajan and Irish descent, from South East London. He likes to explore movement and music in his work and telling stories for the black working class community in which he grew up. He has worked across multiple roles in theatre including writing, producing and directing, with a number of theatres including the Young Vic, Almeida and Lyric Hammersmith. He is excited to be working with HighRise on The UK Drill Project.
Insta: @bajan_boii

Toni ‘Reese’ Robinson
Vocal Director
Toni ‘Reese’ Robinson is probably best known as the voice and writer of the ‘Did Somebody Say Just Eat’ campaign for McCann (2019 to date). Her vocal arrangement work can be heard on songs by Tom Grennan, Joy Crookes, Elton John, and notably UK rapper, Kano: his Hoodies All Summer tour was accentuated by Toni’s Gospel Choir, with highlight performances including Jools Holland (2019) and Glastonbury (2021). Toni has also provided backing vocals for some of pop's finest artists, including Rita Ora, Jess Glynne, Dave and Bastille (for whom she was featured vocalist on the 2019 album Doom Days and choir director on their 2018 Re-Orchestrated tour).
Insta & Twitter: @ToniRobinson_VD

Yami Löfvenberg
Movement Director
Yami Löfvenberg is a movement director, theatre director and multidisciplinary artist working at the intersection of movement, theatre and cross-arts. Between making her own work, Yami mentors, educates and deliver workshops nationally and internationally. She was on the creative choreographic team for the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony and is a member of performance collective Hot Brown Honey. Yami has a collaborative company called Passion & Purpose that focuses on dance management, creative projects, and artist progression.

Adrian Derrick-Palmer
Fight Director
Adrian Derrick-Palmer is an experienced stunt performer and actor with over ten years of experience in the TV and film industry. Most notably he has appeared in No Time to Die, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Mission Impossible – Dead Reckoning, Gangs of London and Josie Rourke's Mary Queen of Scots. Adrian has stunt-doubled for actors such as Leslie Odom Jr, Michael Balogun, Samuel Adewunmi, KSI and Babou Ceesay, among others.  He is Rambert’s Fight Director for Peaky Blinders: The Redemption of Thomas Shelby.
Insta: @aidiepalmer

Dan Light
Video Designer
Dan Light is a London-based video designer who recently graduated from The Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He has received an Offie nomination for his work on Instructions for a Teenage Armageddon. Dan is also the Associate Video Designer (to Finn Ross) for the Bat Out of Hell UK Tour and Las Vegas Residency. Professional video design work includes: Move Fast and Break Things for Freight Theatre; SAD for Omnibus Theatre; Instructions for a Teenage Armageddon and Heather at Southwark Playhouse; What Do You See for The Pappy Show; Snowflakes at the Old Red Lion; and It's a Motherf**king Pleasure R&D for Flawbored.

Insta & Twitter: @LightDan_

Mary Melodies
Videographer & Additional Video Content Creator
Mary Melodies is an actor, writer and filmmaker originally from Romania. She recently starred in a short film for the BBC, It’s My Party, worked as a cinematographer and editor for HighRise’s The Concrete Jungle Book show trailer and improvised her way through The Golden Key event hosted by Coney. Mary has collaborated with a variety of companies from all over the world since her career began, including Masca Theatre from Bucharest, Pantakin Theatre Company from Venice, Mimart Theatre from Belgrade, St. Mary’s University in London, Transcena, Phakama, TCFT, BBC, Cardboard Citizens and Coney. She’s been working with HighRise in one way or another since before the company’s inception, and has been documenting their projects for the past decade. Including this one.

Simisola Majekodunmi
Lighting Designer

Simisola Majekodunmi graduated from RADA with a specialist degree in Lighting Design. Her work in theatre includes: Treason: The Musical in Concert at Theatre Royal, Drury Lane; Starcrossed at Wilton’s Music Hall; Electric Rosary at the Royal Exchange Manchester; Traplord for 180 Studios; Born to Exist in the Netherlands and on UK tour; Jungle Rumble at the Fortune Theatre; Human Nurture at Sheffield Theatres; The Wiz at the Hope Mill Theatre; Is God Is and Living Newspaper Edition at the Royal Court; J’ouvert at Theatre 503 and the Harold Pinter Theatre; Lucid, Tiger Under the Skin for New Public Company; Driving Miss Daisy at York Theatre Royal; Invisible Harmony at the Southbank Centre; and Just Another Day and Night at The Place. Her work as an Associate includes: The Shark is Broken at the Ambassador’s Theatre; Carousel at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre; Shoe Lady at the Royal Court; 15 Heroines at Jermyn Street Theatre and Herding Cats at Soho Theatre.

Sampira Al-Fihri
Exhibition Curator
Sampira Al-Fihri is a curator, producer and writer working across film, theatre and visual arts, mainly in the horror genre. When she is not producing work in the horror genre, her works span historical protests and sci-fi or are interrogating state intelligence operations, art censorship and conspiracy theories.
Insta: Sampira___
Twitter: @___SAMO

Johnny Savage
Production Designer
Johnny Savage is a Philippines-born production designer based in London, who has honed his craft working under various designers, learning and developing his practice. A degree in music production for media, a love for the arts and inquisitive nature leads Johnny’s work: his aim being to create worlds that are both provocative and engaging.

Daisy Francis-Bryden
Stage Manager
Daisy Francis-Bryden graduated from Rose Bruford College in 2021, with a Second Class Honours in Stage and Event Management. She has worked in a variety of stage management roles for productions across London, including Stage Manager on Book and Assistant Stage Manager. Work includes: Horse-Play and Originals: Live at Riverside Studios at Riverside Studios; The Man in the Moon on Wiltshire schools’ tour; Orlando at Jermyn Street Theatre; The Night Woman at The Other Palace Studio Theatre; On the Line on London schools’ tour; Footfalls and Rockaby at Jermyn Street Theatre and Ustinov Theatre; Girlplay at Camden People's Theatre; and The Duration for Omnibus Theatre.

Westerfield Oreluwa Ibikunle Shoderu
Artistic Associate and Collaborator
Westerfield Oreoluwa Ibikunle Shoderu (Ore) is a young actor, writer, director, musician, mover and all-round curious human being. Currently in his third year of training at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Ore seeks truth through art. Like his mentors at HighRise he has a passion for music, especially hip hop, rap and drill, and he is excited about the way these types of genres and sub genres can be used in theatre. As a writer, his early work Camp Drill was funded by Guildhall’s Undisciplined Scheme, run by Gilly Roche, and with support from his peers at school was showcased at Guildhall’s basement. He will appear as Atilla in a new production at Guildhall of Hyde + Seek, written and directed by Tristan Fynn-Aiduenu. Previous work includes Lil.Miss.Lady with HighRise Theatre, and Chain Reaction by Pyramid Pictures, directed by Jamal Miller

Franklyn Addo
Research Consultant
Franklyn Addo is a community advocate and multidisciplinary artist. He is one of the expert witnesses working to challenge the misuse of music as evidence in criminal proceedings and the blanket mischaracterisation of young people as gang members. Franklyn has spent years on the frontlines helping to socially rehabilitate survivors of violence, and has written about issues like police brutality in platforms like the Guardian and The Independent. His non-fiction debut A Quick Ting on Grime is forthcoming on Jacaranda Books in 2023, and his latest single Ghetto Angels is on all digital streaming platforms. 


Panelists (Panel discussion, Wed 16 Nov)

Ciaran Thapar (host)

Dominic Garfield
Writer and Director

Franklyn Addo
Franklyn Addo is a community advocate and multidisciplinary artist. He is one of the expert witnesses working to challenge the misuse of music as evidence in criminal proceedings and the blanket mischaracterisation of young people as gang members. Franklyn has spent years on the frontlines helping to socially rehabilitate survivors of violence and has written about issues like police brutality in platforms like The Guardian and Independent.  His non-fiction debut A Quick Ting on Grime is forthcoming on Jacaranda Books in 2023, and his latest single ‘Ghetto Angels’ is out now on all digital streaming platforms.

Elena Papamichael
Elena Papamichael is a criminal defence barrister, dealing with serious violence, drugs, robbery and public order. She has successfully opposed drill music evidence and gang evidence being introduced into criminal trials. She has experience with gang injunctions and criminal behaviour orders seeking to prohibit the publishing of music. She has written about Anti-Black racism, policing and drill music, and is most recently on the Advisory Board for the Racial Bias and the Bench report about judicial racial bias.

Kenny Allstar
Kenny Allstar is an award-winning DJ, industry innovator, freestyle king and self-proclaimed ‘Voice of the Streets’. He is a gatekeeper and lynch pin to the current UK Hip-Hop explosion and true torchbearer for new talent. Since cutting his teeth as a DJ covering underground radio, he took over from Charlie Sloth as a host of the 'Friday Night Rap Show' on BBC Radio 1Xtra, and has also hosted BBC 1's 'Rap Game UK'. He founded the Mixtape Madness series 'Mad About Bars' and the independent freestyle platform 'The General's Corner'. Kenny has written about the UK drill landscape for Pitchfork. His debut collaboration album is called Block Diaries.

Production acknowledgements
The UK Drill Project was devised by the company, alongside extensive research, hours of interviews and the generosity of our many expert contributors.

With special thanks to: Hoodrich for providing costume for The UK Drill Project and video trailer, No Comment; Cambridge Junction and young artists from the Beats, Trials & Tribulations project at Romsey Mills (you can see their music videos, created with HighRise, on the screens in the exhibition); Tide Films who shot the Beats, Trials & Tribulations videos and No Comment.