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Whilst studying at the Central School of Speech and Drama

artist Adébayo Bolaji was inspired by the works of Peter Brook and Grotowski,

and upon graduating in 2008, he looked to develop new works that were based on fresh ways of story-telling with a focus on new writing.

And so through a piece Bolaji had written himself called ‘Ugly Butterflies’

Ex Nihilo began, however, the group had not yet become a fully realised idea.

It was only later that by meeting with other actors, writers and practitioners

through different means that the idea of a collective that met to work on their craft,

encourage, debate and facilitate creatives- did Ex Nihilo (Latin for ‘out of nothing’) actually 

become (as Bolaji likes to call it) “a space”.


In his own words “ the point is that we are not a fixed group of members- apart from a few.

However, artists of different fields from music to sculpture, theatre or contemporary art get together when necessary and within the context of theatre want to tell a story of a kind and we experiment with how- especially through newer media. Constantly looking for ways to push the boundaries- not for the sake of it, but in respect of us as people being a living thing and so stories themselves are ‘living things’ and so should always be, at least to me, progressing.

Being playful is definitely at the centre of what we do.”


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