Dr Charlotte Jones

Picture of Dr Charlotte Jones -- Principal Investigator on the Beat of Our Hearts. Picture shows a portrait. Charlotte has shoulder-length red hair and is smiling.

Charlotte (she/her) is the Principal Investigator on The Beat of Our Hearts. Her research interests lie in gender, sexuality, disability, and health, and particularly the intersections of these areas. She also leads another collaborative project, exploring new ways of thinking about (in)fertility, sex, and the life course (Reprofutures) and recently launched the Queer Disability Studies (QDS) Network with colleagues in Northumbria and Sheffield.

In 2016, Charlotte received her PhD on the theorisation and medicalisation of sex from the University of Sheffield, which first inspired her interest in loneliness. Prior to joining the University of Exeter, Charlotte was a Research Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, working on a project on the relationship between sexuality, activism and biological citizenship in the context of HIV PrEP provision. Before moving to Edinburgh, she worked on the Universities Supporting Victims of Sexual Violence (USVReact) project at Brunel University, developing new education programmes for university staff responding to disclosures of sexual violence. She was also Research Fellow on a series of AHRC-funded projects known collectively as Around the Toilet (2015-2018), a collaboration between the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam, as well as numerous other contributors, artists, and organisations.

Dr Richard Vytniorgu

Picture shows Dr Richard Vytniorgu. He is at his desk, wears glasses and a short-sleeved button-up shirt and is smiling showing teeth.Richard (he/him) is the Postdoctoral Research Associate on The Beat of Our Hearts. He is interested in narratives of wisdom and belonging, and is currently writing a book on belonging and gay male effeminacy.

Before joining the Wellcome Centre in 2021, Richard was Impact and Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Cultures, Languages, and Area Studies at the University of Nottingham (2019-21). He worked with Dr Heike Bartel on an AHRC- and Wellcome-funded engaged research project using arts-based approaches to explore narratives of eating disorders in men.

Natalie McGrath

Picture shows Natalie McGrath. She wears a dark top, glasses, has short hair and is smiling.

Natalie (she/her) is the Writer on The Beat of Our Hearts. She is a Playwright, Poet, occasional Performer, Producer of Arts and Heritage projects, Co-Director of Dreadnought South West who curate the Rebellious Sounds Archive and a Co-Director of Out and About Queering the Museum at RAMM (Royal Albert Memorial Museum) with Professor Jana Funke and Ellie Coleman.

Plays include; Coasting and Wild Doves (Bristol Old Vic), Rift (Brewhouse Theatre Taunton), Scottish Kiss (Paines Plough’s Come to Where I’m From), Metal Remains (Theatre West) was shortlisted for the Meyer Whitworth Prize, Exodus (Box of Tricks NWxSW Tour), Oxygen and The Cause (Dreadnought South West) published by Methuen & Co.  Electric Spaces (Exeter Bikeshed Theatre and Barbican Theatre, Plymouth). The Sound RnD supported by ACE SW and Theatre Royal, Plymouth. Natalie was part of the Traverse Theatre’s Open Submissions 2019 programme, and their inaugural First Stages Festival with development on her play Blessed.  We’ll Meet In Moscow was part of Shift Scot’s Pride Plays in collaboration with the Traverse Theatre in LGBT History Month 2020.  Currently under commission by the University of Exeter’s Wellcome Centre for the Cultures and Environments of Health in partnership with Exeter Northcott Theatre and the Intercom Trust, to write a new play called The Beat of Our Hearts, about LGBTQIA+ loneliness and belonging.  Natalie has also written one of ten Compact Commissions for Exeter’s City of Literature venture entitled All the Things We Grieve.  Her play Exodus will be published by Slate Publishing, Summer 2021 as part of a new anthology about Dartmoor.  She is writing her first book Honeycomb a poetic response to queering the collections at RAMM.

Andy Hunt

Picture shows Andy Hunt, in a jacket and white shirt, smiling and wearing sunglasses. He is outside and the sun is on his face.

Andy (he/him) has now worked for the Intercom Trust ( LGBT+ charity) for over fifteen years as CEO, deputy director and head of helpline, advocacy and support services. Working with clients with issues such as internalised shame, victims of hate crime, neighbour harassment, victimisation because of their sexual orientation and Gender Identity.

He has been an advocate for many clients in need of representation with asylum status, discrimination in employment, health and social care. Andy has over the years been a catalyst for change within the Trust raising standards and the quality of the service Intercom provide to service users and over one hundred LGBTQI community groups throughout the southwest.

When Andy first came into post The Intercom Trust worked with seventy-five clients face to face in the first year and had 1.5 paid workers and a few volunteers. In 2020 we worked with 1253 individual clients and had over 23,000 thousand contacts in and out of the service. We now have 14 paid workers and a team of volunteer counsellors for the helpline and advocacy service.” I am very proud to say I could not wish for a more committed, dedicated and professional team”.

Andy now manages the Charity and focuses on strategic partnership-working with public authorities (crime, local government, health, etc). Andy has also raised the profile of the Trust on a national level working in partnership with LGBT consortium, Mermaids, LGBT Foundation, Stonewall and many others

Naomi Turner

Picture of Noami Turner - black and white in profile. She has frizzy hair and is smiling. Naomi (she/her) is the producer of our play, The Beat of Our Hearts.

Naomi works part-time at Exeter Phoenix programming the theatre and creating talent development opportunities for local artists, and is also a freelance producer, theatre & filmmaker. She has created award-winning short dance films as Co-Artistic Director of LeMoon, most recently ‘Scapelands’; a BBC commission as part of the New Creatives scheme, which had its TV premiere last year on BBC4.

This year she produced a new series of radio plays with Documental Theatre exploring the experiences of carers & people in support roles, funded by the Audio Content Fund, which is being broadcast on various radio stations across the UK throughout Autumn 2021. She is currently producing Quirk Theatre’s newest family show ‘Rhia and the Tree of Lights’ for this winter.
Naomi is incredibly excited to come on board to produce ‘The Beats of our Hearts’, after having previously collaborated with Natalie McGrath to deliver Come As You Are Festival at Exeter Phoenix in 2019, as well as working with the Wellcome Centre over the past few years to deliver Exeter Phoenix’s Mental Health Awareness Festival ‘BLOOM’.


Zachary Hing

Black and white photo of Zachary Hing. He is looking directly at the camera with a neutral expression

Zachary (he/they) will be playing Quill in our Being Human preview of The Beat of Our Hearts on November 11, 2021.

Film: Hellraiser (Hulu, Phantom Four, Spyglass Entertainment)

Television: HALO (Showtime/Amblin)

Theatre: Living Newspaper (Royal Court); Them! (National Theatre Scotland); Pah-La (Royal Court); Forgotten 遗忘 (Arcola/ Theatre Royal, Plymouth); Why is the Sky Blue? (Southwark); Jubilee (Royal Exchange, Manchester/ Lyric, Hammersmith).

Workshops: Born Slippy (Almeida); Thatcher in China (National); Pericles (National); Timeless & Twelfth Night (National Youth Theatre); Spider Girls (Young Vic/Head For Heights).

Maggie Bain

Colour of Maggie Bain. They are looking directly into the camera, with a neutral / slight smile expression.

Maggie (they/them) will be playing Val in our Being Human preview of The Beat of Our Hearts on November 11, 2021. 

Maggie’s theatre credits include: We’ll Meet in Moscow (Traverse Theatre), Dream (RSC), Henry V & The Tempest (Shakespeare’s Rose) Cyrano de Bergerac (National Theatre of  Scotland, Citizens Theatre & Royal Lyceum) Macbeth (Tobacco Factory), Man To Man (Brooklyn Academy of Music, UK Tour, Edinburgh Fringe & Wales Millennium Centre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare’s Globe), Broken Meats (Southwark Playhouse), The Blood is Strong (Finborough Theatre), Beautiful Burnout (Frantic Assembly), Henry V & A Doll’s House (Theatre Delicatessen), 3 Stories – Memory, Love of the Nightingale (Rough Fiction), It’s A Girl (Edinburgh Fringe & International Theatre Festival Bucharest), Kid Simple (Edinburgh Fringe). Maggie is also a practitioner for internationally renowned theatre company Frantic Assembly.

Television credits include: I Hate Suzie, Intergalactic, Black Mirror, Trigonometry, The End of the F*****g World, Goldie’s Oldies, Happiness, Crisis Control, Churchill’s Mother.

Film credits include: The Lion Vs The Little People, Dark Sense,The Wider Sun (BFI Short), Cold Kill.

Radio Credits include: The Tempest (BBC), Peking Noir (BBC), Getting Better (Audible)


Andrew Macbean

Colour photo of Andew Macbean. He looks directly into the camera and has a neutral expression.

Andrew (he/him) will be playing Dove in our Being Human preview of The Beat of Our Hearts on November 11, 2021.

Andrew Macbean trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. His work in theatre includes Under Milkwood, Amadeus, Twelfth Night for the National Theatre; Titus Andronicus, Richard III and Measure for Measure at the RSC; She Stoops to Conquer at Theatre Royal Bath; Vanity Fair at Middle Temple Hall; Hedda Gabler at the Old Vic; Twelfth Night and Much Ado About Nothing with Rabble Theatre Co.; Much Ado About Nothing for Shakespeare in the Squares; Richard III for Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory, Bristol; Rough Crossing at Vienna’s English Theatre; The Trap for the Clapham Omnibus; The Little Prince at the Bike Shed, Exeter; Killer Joe at Bristol Old Vic; Mother Goose at the Northcott; Twelfth Night, King Lear and The Taming of the Shrew for Creation; The Picture of Dorian Gray (European tour); The Lady’s Not for Burning and Out of Bounds at the Finborough; 1:36:2600 at Regent’s Park; A Christmas Carol at Trafalgar Studios; and Macbeth (UK tour).

TV includes The Pembrokeshire Murders, Abba, Post Code, EastEnders, Keith Lemon’s Fit, Whistleblower, Torchwood, Mrs David, The Great Escape, The Wrong Sea, Double Top, Dead Cat and Poirot: Evil Under the Sun. Film includes The Keith Lemon Film. Radio includes Crossparty, Stagefright, We Are Not The BBC and Springheel’d Jack.


Tianna Arnold

Colour photo of Tianna Arnold. They are looking directly into the camera, with a neutral expression.

Tianna (they/them) will be playing Luca in our Being Human preview of The Beat of Our Hearts on November 11, 2021.

Theatre credits:

WHO CARES Guildford School of Acting Dom Rouse
RED VELVET Guildford School of Acting Nicholai La Barrie
IMAGE OF AN UNKNOWN YOUNG WOMAN Guildford School of Acting Heather Carroll
MACBETH Guildford School of Acting Jaq Bessell
OROONOKO Guildford School of Acting Dominic Burdess
ALL MY SONS Guildford School of Acting Richard Neal