Meeting of ‘enigmatic’ minds produces a twisted fairy tale

Two students who met while studying at Coventry University have collaborated on a new theatre production to be presented during the university’s SPECTRUM 2013 Performing Arts Festival.


Enigmatic Theatre Co

Stephanie Lovegrove (left) and Jessica Rowe from Enigmatic Theatre

Kimberly Jo Spicer and Colin Bloxham both hail from Milton Keynes but met for the first time on the university’s Theatre and Professional Practice degree.  Discovering that they shared a similar approach to theatre making and an interest in Gothic fiction, Kimberly and Colin –   both now in their final year of study – went on to form their own company, Enigmatic Theatre.

The company is presenting its debut show, The Winter Forest at the Ellen Terry Theatre, Coventry on Friday 10 May and are then taking the production to their home town on tour the following week.

Inspired by Angela Carter’s celebrated collection of fantastical short stories The Bloody Chamber, Enigmatic Theatre’s The Winter Forest is a twisted fairy tale as juicy as a red apple and as thorny as a single white rose.

As the trees whisper and the forest encloses, three magical and witty witches reveal the sad saga of a young girl’s perilous journey. Combining storytelling with live music and exploring love, revenge and grief, this original and thought-provoking piece leaves it to the audience to decide who is good and who is evil.

The Winter Forest is one of many theatre productions taking place during Coventry University’s Performing Arts Festival, which also includes creative dance and music performances and which runs at venues across the city and other locations until Friday 24 May.

The festival itself forms part of Coventry School of Art and Design’s Degree Show 2013. An annual showcase for final year students in subjects ranging from the performing arts to industrial design, the Degree Show marks the culmination of their studies with a series of public performances and exhibitions for friends, family, members of the public and potential employers.

Kimberly, who has performed on stage at the London Palladium and who has represented the UK at a world dance competition in Los Angeles, is delighted to be presenting her company’s debut show during the festival and is equally excited about taking the production back to her home town the following week.

Kimberly said:  “It’s great to be part of such a vibrant, creative performing arts festival. It’s what we’ve been working towards during our final year and we’re really looking forward to giving the very first public airing of our play in its entirety at the festival and then taking it on the road for a ‘homecoming’ performance.

“We’ve put a lot of work in. As well as writing and performing the piece, we’ve sewn costumes, built the set and constructed props. We’ve raised our own funds to put on the performance and to make the tour happen and we’ve also worked with students from other courses to promote and market the show.

“It’s given us a great insight into the business of theatre making which, alongside what we’ve learned about the art and craft of performing during our time at university, is enormously valuable as we launch our careers.“

“As to the show itself, The Winter Forest plays upon the atmospheric, mysterious and emotive themes that run through fairy tales and folklore, and mixes them into a deliciously dark tale which we hope audiences will enjoy!”

Enigmatic Theatre will be presenting The Winter Forest as part of The Performing Arts Festival at 7.30pm on Friday 10 May 2013 in the Ellen Terry Building, Jordan Well, Coventry CV1 5RW. Tickets which cost £5 (£3 concession) can be booked by contacting the company direct via email

The show then runs from Thursday 16 to Saturday 18 May at the Creed Street Theatre & Arts Centre, Wolverton, Milton Keynes, MK12 5LY. Performances begin at 7.30pm and tickets for this venue, which cost £7 (£5 concession), are available at

The Winter Forest is recommended for ages 14 years +.