Intro to Virtual Tools will focus on the integration of physical and virtual content, while also providing an overview of the platforms and tools used to create hybrid experiences.

The growth of live streaming and development of game engines has accelerated during the pandemic, presenting new opportunities for individual artists, as well as large scale studios.

Through a series of short sessions, you’ll learn new techniques that can be applied to your own practice, with talks from artists and industry professionals at the forefront of live virtual production. We’ll be joined by digital performance artists Team Rolfes as they share the virtual worlds they’ve created for the likes of Lady Gaga and Unsound Festival, and the Royal Shakespeare Company will show motion capture tools in action with a look at the technical processes behind Dream.

Introduction to Virtual Tools is a professional development scheme suitable for early-to-mid career artists. It’s open to Greater Manchester artists across the spectrum of arts and creativity, regardless of previous experience with technology.

Key Dates
Applications open Monday 16 May 2022
Application deadline 12 noon, Monday 13 June 2022
Intro to Virtual Tools Day 1 Saturday 25 June 2022
Intro to Virtual Tools Day 2 Saturday 2 July 2022


Introduction to Virtual Tools is delivered over two Saturdays; June 25 and July 2. It features a combination of practical demonstrations and talks from industry professionals. You’ll learn:

  • How to live stream to Twitch or YouTube
  • Game engine basics
  • How performers use motion capture tools to inhabit virtual spaces
  • How the film and broadcast industry are adapting to these new tools


Workshops will be delivered in-person and we encourage participants to bring a laptop that will be used for some of the practical sessions. A limited number of laptops can be provided if required.

How it Works

You’ll join a cohort of digitally-curious artists to share ideas, learn new skills and explore new practices. You’ll also receive a £300 bursary to spend developing your creative practise. You must be at least 18 years of age and resident in Greater Manchester.

We encourage proposals from people with specific access needs and are happy to help with both your application process and the work itself. For further details and assistance, please email:

How To Apply

To apply for this scheme please complete the online form with your name and contact details, including an expression of interest – either written (up to 500 words) or as a short film – (up to two minutes) answering the following questions.

  • Tell us about yourself as an artist/creative and your key achievements so far
  • How could you benefit from the content of the scheme and being part of a cohort of artists/creatives?
  • If you could collaborate with any artist in the world, where would it be and with who?

The closing date for applications is 12 noon on Monday 13 June 2022

Supported by Esmée Fairbairn Foundation Reinventing Performing Arts