8 years ago we were cutting out tickets by hand, now we’re at the cutting edge of contemporary live entertainment. Over this time we’ve been able to support hundreds of emerging performers and have put on thousands of shows, all thanks to the private funding of three of the city’s leading artists. 

Now we’re carrying on in the footsteps of this proud tradition with our Gig for a Gig scheme. We’re asking established artists to support the next generation by donating a performance here at TOM. Then, the proceeds will fund future performances by some of the brightest emerging talent in the industry.

Here’s a romantic story for you. STOMP creators and TOM founders Steve McNicholas and Luke Cresswell both met and performed together for the first time in this very building! Then decades down the line, they decided to work together again on a labour of love that would see them take the reigns here at The Old Market in an attempt to give back to the city, and building, that gave them their start. This is the ethos we want to infuse into our Gig for a Gig scheme. We all stand on the shoulders of giants, walking paths that were laid by those who came before us. I’m sure we can all think of a time when a door creaked open, an opportunity presented itself, a priceless piece of wisdom was passed on, or a unique experience changed everything. Sometimes all that is needed is a chance to test yourself and a gentle nudge in the right direction. We’re asking Industry giants who’ve made it to the giddy heights of commercial and critical success to give a leg up to the next wave.

Pictured: Steve McNicholas and Luke Cresswell at TOM’s launch back in 2011.

We’ve always been passionate about supporting emerging artists as they develop their work, helping them to reach new audiences and build their profile. As a small to mid scale venue, we’re a crucial stepping stone for artists who’ve outgrown small rooms above pubs and are looking to perform to larger audiences. We’ve been host to the likes of Sara Pascoe, Caitlin Moran, James Acaster, Sleaford Mods, Koko Brown, Nish Kumar, 1927 Theatre Co, Metronomy, Tapeface, La Navet Bete, Barely Methodical Troupe, Stormzy, Kano, Devendra Banhart, Sam Smith, Spymonkey, 2B Theatre Co, Rosy Carrick, Brighton Theatre Group, Katherine Ryan, Ariel Pink, Josh Widdecombe, Rob Auton, A & E Comedy, Haitus Kayote, New Mutiny Theatre Co, The Hiccup Project and many many more, all of whom are absolutely incredible performers that used us as a stepping stone to grow and develop their voices.

This is a very exciting time for the venue, and we’re currently talking to some amazing artists about how they can get involved and be a part of the scheme. Keep your eyes and ears peeled, we have some real treats lined up for you all.

Team TOM x