Mr Brightside



Men, eh? What’s that all about? Let’s try and find out shall we?

My name is Nick Gilbert. I’m one of the founding members of The Zoo Co Theatre Company (the Founding Father, if you will. You won’t, but worth a try). This is The Finding Man Project, which is still in its fledgling years
​but I’m here to tell you a bit about it…

It started when, a few years ago, someone asked me what it was like to be the only man at the core of this company working with three women. I hadn’t thought about it before. These three women were my friends. I was just in a theatre company with my friends, wasn’t I?
Yes, is the short answer, but also our different genders did have certain effects that I had never realised before. Over the next few years – with much help from other men and women alike – I thought about gender, masculinity and how these things affect us everyday a lot. I thought about it even enough to think; ‘I could make a show about this’. And so here we are.


The aim of The Finding Man Project is to explore masculinity by asking questions such as; what does it mean to be a man? And what is masculinity? One outcome of this project will be a show, though there is scope for more creative output from other different artists, as well as engagement with members of the public.


The first step for this project will be six weeks of weekly workshops for men, which are being held at Project B in Croydon over the summer. These workshops will be a fun and supportive way to explore manliness in all its forms. They are open to all men from all walks of life (though there may be a minimum age limit. Sorry kids). This is not therapy and I am not a therapist. The workshops are a place and time for participants to explore as far as they are comfortable with what being a man is, through activities and exercises facilitated by myself. As well as this, the workshops will form part of the research and development process for the show. I realised that this subject is not something that can rely solely on my voice and so the thoughts and experiences of other men will play a vital role in shaping the piece.

Dates and Times:
Mondays from 24th July – 28th August
7pm – 8.30pm

Project B in East Croydon

The Show

The show itself is still being made. The workshops will form part of the research and development process and at the end of this we may find that more engagement or R&D work needs to take place before finishing the piece. However, this is what we know so far…

It will be a one-person show about masculinity. I do not want this to be a piece just about me, I am keen for it to honour other men and their experiences and for this reason there will likely be an audience engagement, interaction and participation element to the show. Hopefully it will be informative to some degree, but largely I am aiming to dissect what we mean when we talk about masculinity and try to discover how much truth there really is in these ideas. And if that sounds far too pretentious, I also want it to be funny. And just the right amount of weird.
​​So, you know, fingers crossed. 

That’s all from me for now, but for more info and to keep up to date with this and other Zoo Co projects you can sign up for our free monthly newsletter on the Contact Us page (and there’s a picture of my face at the top, aren’t you lucky), check out the Finding Man: Blog page or alternatively, drop me a line at