In July 2015, the Trustees of the ALW Foundation awarded a one-off grant to Hackney Empire to fund the Hackney Empire Young Artists Company to learn all aspects of producing their own piece of musical theatre and gain skills and confidence to develop as professional artists. The project will take place over a period of one year in weekly evening sessions and intense weeks in the Summer/Spring holidays, culminating in production at Hackney Empire and tour to Edinburgh Festival in Summer 2016. Although the initial project title was the Hackney Harlem Project, it was important that the young company founded their own identity and mission statement – therefore as the project moves forwards it will be called the ‘TWIST Theatre Company project'. Claire Middleton, Chief Executive of Hackney Empire said "The generous grant towards the full cost of the Artist Development Graduate Programme will allow our young creatives to fulfil their dreams. Hackney Empire is grateful to be able to realise its vision of a young artists company who will be professionally mentored by the creative team and industry stalwarts".