TOOLKIT SERIES 2- Nickie Miles-Wilden and Testament in Conversation

It is important that we bring compassion and understanding to the situation we find ourselves in. This continues to be a tremendously difficult time for theatre and the artists who make it. If we are going to recover from the experiences of the past 12 months, we are going to need playwrights. That is a remarkable endeavour and a huge responsibility – something for which we all have the utmost respect and admiration at the Bruntwood Prize. That is why we are always striving to find ways to support playwrights and encourage people to have the courage to write.

Whether you have been able to be creative or not, we want to try and find ways to support you to continue to be engaged with the craft of writing for performance, engaging with an audience, telling stories and taking people on journeys. We truly hope that this series of on-line workshops – will inspire and support you to be creative and to find new possibilities for your work to be realised.

This week, something new from Nickie Miles Wildin and Testament- a video chat on their experiences writing with and for community in the Royal Exchange Theatre and the effect of the first lockdown on March 2020 on their creative process one year ago. 


Nickie and Testament Transcript- FINAL


You can also view the video on Youtube here:



Nickie is incoming Joint Artistic Director at DadaFest and Associate Director for Graeae Theatre company where she is head of New Writing.

She has also worked at The Royal Exchange Theatre as Young Company Programme Leader and Resident Assistant Director (RTYDS) Nickie directed the young company in an adaptation of The Tempest and their recent online work –  MMXX and ConnectFest.

Nickie has also worked with many companies including Ramps On The Moon, Contact and National Theatre. Her work is creative, collaborative and playful.

In the summer Nickie also performs in outdoor shows Bingo Lingo, Buck A Brenda and The Great Barnsley Bake Off.


Testament is a Hip-Hop MC, writer, theatre maker and world record breaking human beatboxer. Born in North London and growing up Manchester, moving onto to study in West Yorkshire where he now currently resides. As a lyricist his critically acclaimed work together strands of rap, song and spoken word. Testament’s work includes the celebrated Hip-Hop album Homecut: No Freedom Without Sacrifice, as well as several spoken word performances for BBC TV and BBC Radio (1xtra, Radio 4 and 6Music). More recently, 2019 he was Channel 4 Writer in Residence at Royal Exchange Theatre Manchester.

Testament’s debut Radio Play for BBC Radio 4 The Beatboxer was shortlisted for The Imison Award at The BBC Audio Drama Awards 2020.

Testament also penned the play Black Men Walking, nominated for BEST NEW PLAY at the UK Theatre Awards and BEST PLAY at the Writer’s Guild Awards. Produced by the award-winning Eclipse Theatre Company and The Royal Exchange Manchester, it toured nationally in 2018 including The Royal Court. Testament was also the Musical Director touring show Skip Rap with Mind The Gap artist Alan Clay.

He has worked with a diverse range of people from Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Grammy winner Corinne Bailey Rae, Ray Parker Jnr, jazz legends Joe Lovano and Jean Toussaint, Mercury nominee Soweto Kinch to the originator of Hip-Hop himself DJ Kool Herc. He also won the BBC Urban Music Talent Award in 2007. In 2015 he wrote his first show the acclaimed play Blake Remixed – a personal response to the work of William Blake which had a successful run in Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2015.

Testament is a former presenter of Radio 4’s ’Seriously’ podcast and has presented a series of reports on the MOBO Awards for ITV. Testament has been a guest presenter on BBC 5Live alongside the brilliant Nihal Arthanayake, and has presented BBC Radio 4’s flagship show “Pick of the Week” several times.

Testament’s poetry has been published in several anthologies and has been used a teaching resource in the UK and in over 25 countries around the world. He is also a international workshop facilitator, founding workshop company Hip-Hop Clinic in 2014 producing workshops in venues that range from schools, universities and stadiums, to prisons and park benches. Work as a poet coach includes BBC Radio 1, BBC 1xtra, The Roundhouse and Apples & Snakes.


Published on:
17 Mar 2021


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