About Us

Winners of the Exeunt ‘The venue you most want everyone to know about (while simultaneously not in case it gets too popular and you can’t get tickets)’ award in 2017

‘The jewel in the crown of Brighton’s queer and non-binary scene’ – Culture Trip

Marlborough Theatre has been run by Community Interest Company Marlborough Productions since 2010. We work year round with LGBTQ+ practitioners, with a particular focus on the T & Q, supporting and presenting extraordinary performance by pioneering artists.

The Marlborough Pub and Theatre is a member of Live Art UK the national network of live Art promoters and our programme has a focus on Live Art & Performance Art as opposed to more conventional theatre. We specialise in the unusual, the unexpected and seek out work that has something to say about contemporary queer life.

The building dates back to 1794 and has a chequered history as a ballroom, gambling suite and general den of inequity. If you’re interested in knowing more about the history of the building, check out our wiki page


David Sheppeard – Creative Producer/ Bar Manager

David (he/him) is producer, writer, performer and co-founder of Pink Fringe. During his time in Brighton he has worked with Arts Agenda, Brighton Fringe, Queer In Brighton and as producer for artists including Boogaloo Stu and Lorraine Bowen.

He fell into working at the Marlborough in 2009 and has since worked tirelessly to hold up the walls of this amazing old building.


Abby Butcher – Creative Producer


Abby (she/her) is a Creative Producer and Arts Activist who uses her platforms to promote gender equality and trans rights. She works in contemporary performance and co-runs None of Us is Yet a Robot with Emma Frankland.

She has been a part of the Marly fold for 4 years and loves it even though it gives her grey hair.

If she can’t be found in the theatre, she’s usually propping up the bar downstairs.



Tarik Elmoutawakil – Creative Producer/ Bar Manager


Tarik (he/him) is a producer and events manager. He’s become synonymous with The Marlborough having worked there since 2001. Starting out as casual bar staff, by 2008 he took an ambitious leap of faith to hold the reigns of running The Marlborough Theatre, and has never looked back.

In 2014, he returned to work on the bar, only this time taking the role as manager of the Marlborough Pub with David. He loves The Marlborough, and all the people that go there. Sometimes he talks to the bricks and mortar.


Ema Boswood – Programme Coordinator


Ema (she/her) is a semi-professional game show contestant and winner of the Funniest Girl award at her high school leavers assembly. These are her proudest achievements. She’s also the Programme Coordinator at the Marlborough, having joined us as Marketing & Admin assistant in October 2016.

Aside from working at the Marly, Ema makes spooky Performance Art.


Ellie Stanton – Programme Assistant



Ellie (she/her) joined The Marlborough at the beginning of 2018 as our Programme Assistant after living in Leeds for four years.  As the rest of the team can confirm, Ellie is The Marlborough’s resident bad boy with a polite edge.

Outside of The Marly, Ellie is into illustration and design, and one day hopes to be very good at playing the bass.


Lee Smith -Trans Pride Season Assistant Producer

Lee (they / them) is a Freelance Producer with an interest in performance exploring the themes of gender, queerness and mental health. They have previously worked with Bristol Old Vic, Battersea Arts Centre and Brighton Dome as well as with artists such as Emma Frankland and Byron Vincent. They have been seeing work at The Marly for years and are delighted to be joining the team to work on their Trans Pride season and promote a programme of awesome trans and non-binary artists. 


Rosie Powell – Videographer


Rosie (she/her) is a filmmaker and photographer and produces our media content. She specialises in live event and performance documentation throughout the art world and beyond. She has worked with Universal Music Group, ArtsAdmin, Ovalhouse, Chelsea FC and Heather Peace.

She is often blending into the background of the Theatre or hanging out with all the cool kids downstairs. If you haven’t seen her for a while, She may be stuck with her camera bag in one of the many narrow corridors at the Marly.

Steering Group

The Marlborough is supported by a voluntary board comprising:

Brian Lobel Artist and Reader at University of Chichester

Lesley WoodChief Executive of New Writing South

Louise Blackwell Independent Producer

Michael EppyFreelance Theatre PR

Rifa Thorpe Tracey Mentor and Diversity in Tech Champion

Juno Dawson – Novelist


Participating in the Accelerator Programme of the Spark Social Enterprise project, supported by the Interreg 2 Seas Programme. Visit sparksocialenterprise.eu for more information on the Spark project

marly logos

Back to venue info