The Yard Theatre, Hackney Wick, has announced its plans for 2018 with two show premieres and a new writing festival.

Award-winning director Ned Bennett (PomonaAn Octoroon) will direct The Yard’s artistic associate Josh Azouz’s new play Buggy Baby from 7 to 31 March. The show is a horror comedy, with its characters trying to find normality in a surreal domestic life.

Company Three, who won the Dan Crawford Innovation Award at the Empty Space Peter Brook Awards earlier this year, will present The Act, devised and performed by young people. The company will tour the show to further venues throughout the summer, and follows on from the success of their plays Brainstorm and The FutureThe Act runs at the venue from 10 to 14 April.

In May, theatre company RashDash, will transfer their take on Chekhov in a new adaptation of Three Sisters to The Yard, after it opens at Manchester’s Royal Exchange. The premise for the show is the fact that, despite the original text being named after the sisters, it’s the men who get the vast majority of the lines. Three Sisters runs from 22 May to 9 June.

Joe Harbot will premiere new show A New and Better You, directed by Cheryl Gallacher between 26 June and 14 July. The piece explores and dissects the modern phenomenon of self-improvement.

Also, and perhaps most excitingly, from 25 April to 4 May The Yard will bring back their newly christened Live Drafts programme (previously known as First Drafts), which will see 20 artists present experimental new work in developmental stages.

Earlier this year, The Yard won an Empty Space Award and most recently re-staged its production of This Beautiful Future, which first debuted in May.

Artistic director Jay Miller said:

“This is our first season as one of the Arts Council’s National Portfolio Organisations, and as winners of the final Empty Space Peter Brook Award recognising excellence and innovation in theatre. We think we’ve got a season in store that absolutely does that justice.”