About us

About us

20 Stories High make theatre that is…

gritty, jumping, melodic, rebellious, contemporary, mashed-up, authentic, original, visual, challenging, lyrical, tender, anarchic, diverse, surprising, booming, political, funny, collaborative
and heart-felt.

We make theatre with young people from excluded communities, emerging artists & world-class professionals.

We bring new audiences into theatre venues and also take theatre out into their communities locally, regionally, nationally and internationally.

Meet the team

In the spotlight

Abby Melia

Abby Melia studied Performing Arts at Hugh Baird College, Liverpool, where she performed The Wizard of Oz (2010), The Caucasian Chalk Circle (2011) and A Midsummer’s Night Dream (2012). In 2012, Abby joined 20 Stories High Youth Theatre and Young Actors Company, performing in Rabbit (2013, the Bluecoat and Curve, Leicester) Grounded (2013, the Bluecoat), Headz (2014, Playhouse Studio) and Standard (2014, the Bluecoat). Abby has performed as Nikki in BLACK in a national tour in 2015 and a community venue tour in 2016.

She performed and co-devised I am a Voice (2014, Unity Theatre) and TV/ film credits include Hollyoaks and Blood. She has recorded two music videos: one with the international organisation UCARE and the second with local artists, KOF and Raven. Abby wrote her first stage play RealEyes in 2017 as part of 20 Stories High’s Young Writers Group which was performed at the Bluecoat. Abby is the co-founder of Kitchen Sink, a community arts organisation and is an actor, playwright, singer and song-writer.

Craig Shanda (Chunky)

Zimbabwe-born Chunky holds down residencies at two of Manchester’s most recognised nights: Hit&Run and Hoya:Hoya. He is the frontman for True Tiger, Swamp 81 and Riot Jazz and has been asked to host sets by everyone from Jackmaster, Oneman, Ben UFO to Detroit underground legend Dabrye and seemingly endless DJs from festivals in Europe to the coasts of Australia.

Chunky released ‘The Chunky EP’ on Swamp 81 in late 2012 – the four tracker featured a take on underground dance music that echoed the individuality of his mic skills. Drawing influences from all corners of the shop, Chunky has had sets at Hoya:Hoya, Fabric, Soundwave Festival and more.

The transition from MC to producer/DJ/MC led him to team up with Problem Child to create MCs In The Mix: a concept seeing renowned mic-men and women being invited to DJ in the club and on online sessions such as Get Darker and Boiler Room. Thanks to MCs In The Mix, Flowdan, D Double E, Sgt Pokes, Broke’n’English, Trigga, SP:MC, Crazy D and more have demonstrated their musical tastes rarely acknowledged by audiences. Already receiving high praise, MCs In The Mix continues to grow and be invited to some of Europe’s biggest underground music festivals.

A host, a vocalist, an MC, a producer, a DJ and an event co-organiser, Chunky occupies a unique space within the UK music spectrum and looks set to continue for years to come.

The Artists

We work with a whole range of artists, both locally, nationally and internationally. Here you will find everyone all the artists who have been part of our creative teams.

View the Wall of Fame

Our awards


Firefit are Liverpool’s Super Youth Zone. A state of the art, world class facility for young people. A centre for sports, music, culture and diversity designed by young people – for young people.
Promoting racial harmony through education, sport and the arts, promoting the celebration of diversity and personal integrity and the realisation of potential of all young people.
The Albert Kennedy Trust supports lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans homeless young people in crisis.
YoungMinds is the UK’s leading charity committed to improving the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people.
COAP supports an online community for young people, ranging from 7 to 30 years of age, that have concerns about another family member’s addiction.

Funders and Partners


As a charity, we are very grateful for the support we receive from a variety of funding bodies. All the work we deliver both locally and nationally is reliant on the generosity of these funders, as well as private donations.

To learn more about our supporters. click their logo to view their web page.


Community Engagement Associate – Big Up!

Freelance - £500 fee

Developing participants & audiences for shows & activities in Oldham.