Mercury Musical Developments (MMD) and Musical Theatre Network (MTN) have announced the details of the nationwide search for the UK’s most exciting new musicals to present at BEAM2025, the UK’s biggest showcase of new musical theatre.   

The BEAM Showcase is a key part of Mercury Musical Developments and Musical Theatre Network’s mission to support the development of new musical theatre. BEAM2025 will be held on 15th and 16th May 2025 at Birmingham Hippodrome. This is preceded by a series of pitching days at which new work and artists are identified. MMD and MTN have partnered with theatres and arts organisations around the country to host 21 pitching days in twelve towns and cities across the UK between September and December 2024, and are expecting over 300 new musicals to be pitched.  

Each creative or team has 10 minutes to share their idea with an industry panel and up to 40 musicals will be selected for BEAM2025. Around 50 diverse industry experts, including producers and programmers of new musicals, contribute to the selection process through sitting on the pitching day panels. Bespoke development feedback from the panels will be shared with every pitching team at a later date, thanks to funding from PRS Foundation. Participating venues include Regents Park Open Air Theatre, Birmingham Hippodrome, The Lowry, Wales Millennium Centre, Donmar Warehouse, The Other Palace, National Theatre of Scotland and Everyman Theatre, Liverpool.  

BEAM is designed to encourage and develop musical theatre across the UK, discovering and supporting diverse approaches to the art form, connecting practitioners and finding champions for original work. To date, over 60% of the musicals showcased have gone on to be fully staged or received further development support as a result of BEAM. Current West End shows such as Oliver award-winning Operation Mincemeat and Two Strangers (Carry a Cake Across New York) are notable BEAM success stories.  

BEAM is one of the most inclusive and accessible ways for a new musical to be discovered. It aims to showcase the breadth and variety of new musical theatre throughout the UK, and creatives of all backgrounds are encouraged to bring forward their ideas for new musicals. To book a pitching slot and for more information on the pitching process, please go to the Mercury Musical Developments website. 

A free online event will be held on Wednesday 4th September with an expert panel giving advice and tips for pitching, and answering any questions. This panel will include Matthew Eames (Head of Theatres, The Lowry), Kate Golledge (BEAM pitching facilitator/director), Suzanne Gorman (writer/producer) and Kiki Stevenson (Programme Manager, The Other Palace). Registration for this event is now open via the Mercury Musical Development website. 

“The BEAM pitching process is the most wide-reaching development opportunity for new musical theatre in the UK. We are delighted to be providing each team with feedback so that this is a useful experience for everyone, regardless of the showcase selection. We are really looking forward to meeting artists from around the country and finding the most exciting new work out there.” Natalia Scorer, Mercury Musical Developments 

“Given financial realities, it’s significant BEAM pitching days are one of the most accessible industry entry points. For ten minutes someone with no prior musical theatre experience can find themself sharing their ideas with an artistic director or producer on a pitching day panel, and if selected they get financial support to share their ideas with a venue full of people who can help make them a reality. That’s a rarity worldwide.” James Hadley, Musical Theatre Network 

“BEAM plays a crucial role in the development of the UK musical theatre artform. It unites the entire industry to create and promote new musicals from the ground up. Personally, I am producing two BEAM shows, including ‘Two Strangers (Carry a Cake Across New York)’, which I discovered at BEAM2018 and is now playing in the West End.” – Tim Johanson, producer 

“BEAM is a bit like Cannes – for musicals. And the results are astonishing… brilliantly diverse material that proves musical theatre is alive and well in the UK… it is a celebration of the range and power of British writing talent.” Kate Golledge, director  

BEAM is co-produced by Musical Theatre Network & Mercury Musical Developments, with funding support from Arts Council England and PRS Foundation.