LPW Online Book Club – The Long Christmas Dinner

The LPW Online Book Club is our latest initiative, exclusive for our members.

Not a member yet? Well, if you want a jump start for your writing for the price of a cup of coffee, what are you waiting for? Sign up here today! (Want more reasons to join and a bit more info? Read this).

This month’s pick

For our holiday selection, the LPW Book Club is going to be reading The Long Christmas Dinner by Thornton Wilder.

Why did we pick this?

Thornton Wilder is one of the most celebrated playwrights in American history. He’s best known for Our Town but was also a master of the short form.

One of the most exciting things about his work is the way he experiments with form, and uses this to explore important truths about the human condition. (No wonder, he is LPB Director A.C. Smith’s favourite playwright!)

The Long Christmas Dinner is a long one-act that depicts a Christmas dinner continuing over generations, looking at how traditions unite us, even as time steadily marches onward. It’s a beautiful play, formally fascinating, and we figured the short pick would be welcome for those getting busy with holiday plans!

How does it work?

All you need to do is read the play and come on over to our Members Facebook Group to join the discussion! Book club threads will be marked with the hashtag #bookclub, so it will be easy to find the discussion.

When does it start?

We’re giving you two weeks to read the play, and then discussion will start at lunchtime (1pm) on Wednesday 13 December 2017. Don’t worry if you haven’t finished the play by then, we’ll be starting at the beginning with our discussion, so there will still be a lot that you can get out of it.

However, we can’t be held liable for any spoilers, so if this is something that will bother you, probably best to finish the play before the book club starts.

We’ll be discussing the play in the Facebook Group throughout the rest of the month, so if there’s a question or a topic you want to explore with a group of writers, this is the perfect opportunity.

Need a copy?

If you need to buy a copy, you can do so at the link below. (And if you buy through this Amazon Affiliate link, a small portion of the sale will go towards supporting LPW – at NO extra charge to you!)

You can get this play in this collection of Thornton Wilder’s Works, which also includes some of his most brilliant short plays.

The Collected Short Plays of Thornton Wilder, Volume I (£11.60)

Find out more and sign up to become a member here!

Image: Selmer van Alten via CC Licence (https://flic.kr/p/7qHXGB)

Accessibility in Theatre: A Chat With Director Fauve Alice

How do you create theatre for people who are too often ignored in this industry? Read Editor Jennifer Richards’ Q&A with director Fauve Alice to find out…

Spare Tyre are a theatre company that produce bold and powerful performances that not only includes, but are driven by those who are usually voiceless when it comes to theatre.

Their desire to empower participants and artists to make sure theatre, dance and music is something open for all is a view all theatre-makers should share, yet accessibility in theatre (both in terms of those attending, but also with who is on stage) is limited.

I got the chance to see their recent production Nights at the Circus, which was an arresting performance exploring sex, desire and violence in a post-apocalyptic world where the circus is being forced to continue their show every night.

This performance didn’t just defy the norms in terms of its content, but also with its actors – two of the leads were learning disabled actors Ellie Mason and David Munns.

After the show, I caught up with the director Fauve Alice about how theatre-makers can start making their work more accessible.

Q&A With Fauve Alice


JR: What drew you to this project?

FA: I wanted to bridge the gap. Working with Ellie and David also drew me. And themes of sex, breaking the idea down of what it means to be sexual, and who is allowed to be sexual. Also who is allowed on stage, what bodies are allowed on stage, and really breaking down those perceptions.

JR: Why do you think it’s so important to make theatre accessible?

FA: It’s just necessary – we can’t understand life fully if we consume the same things again and again. If we continue to work in a ‘safe’ framework, how can we take work to the next level? Also feminist work, I love feminist theatre, but we have to look at what it means to be a feminist, and that it is not always through our own experiences. Otherwise we just replay the hierarchy with ourselves on top.

JR: A lot of theatre makers believe making theatre more accessible requires too much time and money. Do you have any advice on how to achieve more accessible theatre without breaking the bank?

FA: To put work on in mainstream venues. We need support to work with artists with disabilities. Even to get Ellie here, it’s £100. We have to raise a lot of money, it comes down to class and wealth, if you have less disposable income it’s harder to make work like this.

Ellie Mason in Nights at the Circus
JR: Accessibility starts with the script. In what ways can playwrights write their show so that it can be seen by everyone?

FA: Sometimes I don’t care about everybody. Sometimes people say they don’t like it, some say it makes them uncomfortable, but I don’t care. My advice is to choose your audience. You can’t make something for everybody.

With making something accessible [for a certain group of people], you have to make it so people want to see it. It takes a lot of work to get into these communities because they’ve been isolated for so long. That’s a job all on its own, getting disabled people to see your show. Working with Spare Tyre helped.

JR: What stages went into producing Nights at the Circus and achieving this accessibility?

FA: Fundraising. Planning, having a strict structure. We can’t just rehearse whenever we want, especially is the cast need special care getting to the venue, or we simple can’t afford it. So fundraising, and extra planning definitely!

David Munns in Nights at the Circus

To learn more about Spare Tyre’s work, click here

Images are from Fauve Alice’s website, which you can view here.

Opportunities – Pick of the Week: Persistent and Nasty seeking female and femme-identifying writers

Each week we look through our pile of writing opportunities to pick out one we think is particularly worth your time. It could be an innovative brief, great prize money, a high-profile company, or just plain fun.

This week’s pick: Persistent and Nasty seeking female and femme-identifying writers

Description: Persistent and Nasty is a platform for female-identified humans working, writing and performing in the stage and screen industry.

They are putting on an evening of new work by female/female-identifying writers. The format of the evening is in two parts. First there’ll be a rehearsed reading of a piece of writing for theatre or film by a female-identified writer. This will be followed by an open forum discussion with an invited industry guest, addressing any issues the work points to and that affect us on a cross-industry level.

What’s so great about it? This is a great opportunity for those female/female identifying writers who currently feel discouraged within the industry to get their work out there and support each other. It’s a chance to work with a creative like-minded team that want to challenge particular gender norms within the industry, as well as having a chance to have your work seen/heard.

The event will be recorded for an accompanying podcast that will serve as documentation of our thoughts, ideas and grievances.

So, if this sounds like the opportunity for you, you have until 15 December 2017 to apply.

Read full details here.

Please note, we’ve posted this for your convenience and we’re not affiliated with the organisers of the opportunity.

Image Credit: Persistent and Nasty

Steyning Festival Theatre Trails 2018

Entries are invited for the 2018 Steyning Festival Theatre Trails. These should be one act plays with maximum performance length of 40 minutes, small casts, and simple production and staging requirements, suitable for staging in a variety of small venues, indoor or outside.

Selected plays will be given two performances to audiences of up to 40. The theme of the festival is ‘Revolution’, which can be interpreted in any way, but plays on any other subjects will also be eligible.

How to apply: 

Scripts should be sent to:

Nicky Dewdney, Clifton,

6a Kings Barn Lane, Steyning

BN44 3YR

For information only email: rjt@lancing.org.uk

Please provide your name and contact details and enclose a stamped addressed envelope if you want your script returned.

Deadline: 12 January 2018

Source: BBCWritersroom

RSL Literature Matters Awards

The RSL’s new Literature Matters Awards aim to reward and enable literary excellence and innovation.  Each year, after an open call for proposals, the Awards will be given to individual writers or other literary creators, recognising their past achievements and providing them with financial support to undertake a proposed new piece of writing or literary project.  Launched as part of the RSL’s new Literature Matters programme, priority will be given to proposals which (a) will help connect with audiences or topics outside the usual reach of literature, and/or (b) will help generate public discussion about why literature matters.

The proposals will be judged and the award-winners selected by a panel of writers who are Fellows of the RSL. For 2018, the panel is: Jonathan Keates (Chair), Imtiaz Dharker and Gillian Slovo.

They are open for submissions of proposals for writing, literary events or projects. An RSL Literature Matters Award must result in new, original writing or other literary activity of an excellent artistic standard, which will reach a substantial readership or audience.

It may be

  • a piece or pieces of writing
  • a publication
  • an event
  • a production

on any subject and in any form, including (but not limited to) prose fiction or non-fiction, short stories, poetry, playwriting, screenwriting, graphic fiction, biography or travel-writing.

The money may be used to fund all or part of the activity, but may not be used for writing or any other activity which has already been completed.

How to apply: To apply, download and complete the application form which can be found here, and send to martha.stenhouse@rsliterature.org.

Deadline: 4 December 2017 

Source: BBCWritersroom

Talawa accepting scripts from Black British Writers

Talawa specialises in developing Black British writers, and their scriptreading service is open through November 2017.

Talawa‘s history of nurturing and collaborating with outstanding writers like Roy Williams, Derek Walcott, Jackie Kay and Malorie Blackman is well known.

Talawa is now developing the next generation of Black British writers such as Arinze Kene, SomaliaSeaton, Theresa Ikoko and Inua Ellams among others.

What to submit / How to apply: 

Please submit one electronic copy of your play either in Word or pdf format with a covering letter to scripts@talawa.com

  • We can only accept one script per person, per window
  • This opportunity is open to Black British writers

(See their website for inspirational quotes and advice on your script.)

How the process works:

  • Talawa will confirm that we have received your script
  • Your script will be read by one of their team of script readers, who will report back to our Literary Associate in our Readers’ Meeting

You will either receive a detailed script report or, if your script is selected for further development, you will be invited to come in and meet with them.

Please note – this process takes three months.   It may take slightly longer if your script has been shortlisted and recommended for a full read by our Literary Associate.

Deadline: 30 November 2017

Source: Talawa Newsletter

Recognize & Inspiring seeking playwright for project based in the West Midlands

Recognize & Inspiring are looking for a script writer to work with several community groups and a group of actors.

The brief is to develop a play about civil rights in Birmingham. The play will be performed as part of a series of events at a venue in Birmingham and will be filmed and used as part of an exhibition, about civil justice and Black History month. (They may also split the play into an adult and child version.)

This is an unpaid opportunity.

How to apply: For further information and/or to apply, contact Audrey Parkes Hayles at Recognize@live.co.uk.

Deadline: 30 November 2017 

Source: Artsjobs

Opportunities Weekly Round-up: 24 November 2017

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Our weekly Friday round-up of opportunities listed on the blog that haven’t yet reached their closing date (listed in order of closing date).  Opportunities are grouped into four sections: 1) Pick of the Week & featured posts; 2) Opportunities with Deadlines; 3) Workshops and Events; 4) Ongoing opportunities (No deadline).

Want to be sure you never miss an opportunity?  Sign up for our email list to get the weekly roundup direct to your inbox!

Featured posts:

Six top tips for breaking into playwriting

What goes in to producing a new writing night?

Our latest opportunities Pick of the Week: Goblin Baby Co. accepting short play and monologue submissions

From the Archive of our Advice Column, Pursued By A Bear: “Should I write short plays or full length?”

Opportunities with deadlines: 

 Attic Theatre Company seeking short plays for Christmas Playwrights Bizarre (£50 prize) – Deadline: 24 November 2017

Congleton Players One-Act Plays Festival open for submissions (£150 prize) – Deadline: 30 November 2017

Talawa accepting scripts from Black British Writers – Deadline: 30 November 2017

Various Instances seeks writers and actors for production project – Deadline: 1 December 2017

Theatrefullstop seeking shorts for pub theatre festival – Deadline: 1 December 2017

IASH/Traverse Creative Fellowship – Deadline: 4 December 2017

Open Commission – Call for proposals, MGSO4 Festival (£1,5000 fee) – Deadline: 4 December 2017

Reboot Theatre Company seeking new writing for 2018 Spring Season (£50 Prize) – Deadline: 10 December 2017

Goblin Baby Co. accepting short play and monologue submissions– Deadline: 11 December 2017

Persistent and Nasty seeking female and femme-identifying writers – Deadline: 15 December 2017

BBC Writersroom DRAMA Script Room 2018 – Deadline: 15 December 2017

Little Pieces of Gold seeking shorts for production at Southwark Playhouse – Deadline: 18 December 2017

Ashland New Plays Festival (Oregon, $15  entry, $1500 prize) – Deadline: 31 December (or when they receive 400 submissions)

Talos II: Science Fiction Theatre Festival – Call for Scripts – Deadline: 31 December 2017

The Female Gaze seeking monologues about women in film – Deadline: 8 January 2018

London Irish Green Curtain Theatre Company seeking short plays and monologues – Deadline: 8 January 2018

BBC Cymru Wales seeking comedy writers for new writing initiative: Find Me Funny – Deadline: 18 January 2018

BBC World Service and British Council launch International Radio Playwriting Competition 2018 – Deadline: 31 January 2018

Arundel Festival Theatre Trail/Drip Action Theatre Company seek short play– Deadline: 31 January 2018

The Script Room Seeking Submissions for March 2018 Showcase – Deadline: 31 January 2018

Events and workshops:

Bryony Kimmings November 2017 Workshop – 27 November – 1st December, 10am-4pm Monday – Friday

ART SCHOOL – Access to Leading Work in Arts Education – 29 November 2017 & 7 December 2017 from 6pm

Writers’ Mutual writing group -currently taking place Wednesdays 11am- 1pm

Tell Yours 2018 – A Development Programme for Emerging Storytellers from Migrant Communities – 14 January – 20 May 2017

Criterion Theatre new writing workshops 2018-16 January – 19 September 2018

Ongoing submissions:

Aurora Metro Books seeks British East Asian plays for publication – Deadline: Ongoing

TheatreLab seeking scripts for rehearsed reading – Deadline: None Posted

Target Theatre Company seeking new plays for development – Deadline: None posted

Middle Child Theatre seeking scripts to commission – Deadline: None posted

Ugly Duck offering cheap rehearsal space in Docklands – next few months for Edinburgh Fringe– Deadline: None posted

Three opportunities with Alphabetti Theatre and rolling deadlines– Deadline: None posted

Newsthump looking for spoof news writers – Deadline: ongoing

Arvon Grants available for writing courses – Deadline: none posted/ various

London Poet seeking film makers to collaborate with – Deadline: none

Edgemar Center for the Arts (Santa Monica) seeking new work for 2017 season – Deadline: none

Batty Mama seeking writers/ artists – Deadline: none posted

Rich Gifts Theatre seeking writers – Deadline: rolling

Paines Plough accepting ongoing submissions – Deadline: rolling

BBC Comedy Classroom – Comedy writing resources for young people –  Deadline: various

Online Masterclass with Aaron Sorkin on Screenwriting ($90) – Deadline: none posted

JW3 seeking submissions of pieces about Jewish culture – Deadline: rolling

BFI Postroom open to submissions of films and scripts from emerging filmmakers – Deadline: rolling

Opportunities to hear your play with Player Playwrights – Deadline: rolling

Online Playwriting Course with Live Theatre (£95-£495) – Deadline: rolling

Playwrights Circle at the Bread & Roses – Deadline: ongoing (monthly event)

The Institute of Other seeking creative practitioners – Deadline: none posted

White Hart Trust Studios seeking international and foreign language theatre – Deadline: none posted

Pokfulam Rd Productions looking for playwrights and creatives – Deadline: none posted

55 Kings Contemporary Theatre Productions looking for writers – Deadline: none posted

Plane Paper Theatre call out for plays – Deadline: none posted

Theatrelab seeking scripts to perform at ‘WordPlay’ at Bath Spa University – Deadline: none posted

Londonville Lit offering reading slots – Deadline: none posted

Orange Tea Theatre accepting submissions – Deadline: rolling

Funding available for students at Glasgow University MLitt Playwriting & Dramaturgy – Deadline: none posted

Everything Theatre accepting plays for podcast readings – Deadline: none posted

The Cockpit Theatre seeking work for scratch nights – Deadline: none  posted but performances take place on the first Monday of the month.

Shred Productions open to submissions – Deadline: none (open submissions)

Open Commission – Call for proposals, MGSO4 Festival (£1,500 fee)

MGSO4 Festival is a multi-arts festival based in Epsom, Surrey, and they have announced a new open arts commission to celebrate the 400-year anniversary of the discovery of Epsom Salts and the festival theme ‘Discovery.’

Artists, groups and creative activists working in any genre of the arts are invited to submit a proposal on the theme of Discovery. The commissioned artist or group will receive a fixed £1500 fee.

The final selecting panel will include: Mark Hudson, Head of Graphic Design at University for the Creative Arts, international festivals producer Yemisi Mokuolu, MGSO4 Festival director Maria Reeves, composer-musician Ben Tompsett, and charity trustees.

Proposals must meet the following criteria:

• The commission must deliver a piece of work that can be experienced or viewed by the public during the festival week 2 – 8 July 2018
• The artist/group must deliver two workshops during the festival to accompany the work that members of the public can attend
• The artist/group must agree to participate in promotional activities (e.g. press interviews)
• The named person submitting the proposal is responsible for ensuring it is delivered, and must be over the age of 18

Read full details here.

How to apply: To submit, download the proposal form and email the completed form, along with your CV to hello@mgso4festival.org.

Deadline: 4 December 2017 

Source: ArtsJobs

ART SCHOOL – Access to Leading Work in Arts Education

Art School, the new company being set up to support the education sector and arts industry to come together to improve and protect arts education has announced its next two events in its first initiative.

The first of the event will take place on 29 November 2017 and speakers will include The Diversity School Initiative, set up by to campaign for increased diversity in drama schools, Oxford University academic Helen Campbell Pickford, who was co-author of the influential “In Battalions” survey into new writing in theatres which former Culture Minister Ed Vaizey credited with leading to tax changes and who will be offering advice on how writers can run similar campaigns, and London Drama, the professional association for drama teachers in London.

The second event will take place on 7 December 2017, speakers will include the Bacc for the Future campaign, the influential campaign for EBacc to include creative subjects, Titilola Dawudu, who is currently part of the Artistic Director Leadership Programme’s “Leaders of Tomorrow” scheme, runs Stages to promote young girls in drama, and who will be offering advice on combining work as a writer with producing and mentoring, and Daniel Harrison, Chair of WhatNext? Generation, who also works at the Young Vic Theatre.

These events are free and are open to teachers, education leaders, the arts industry, students and artists who would like to teach, and anyone who would like to find out more about what work is leading the way in terms of arts education, hear the speakers’ thoughts on their work, what’s working and what’s not in arts education, and hear their advice and recommendations for how to improve and protect arts education.

The events will also be audio recorded for a book to be passed to the government to advocate for the need to protect arts education at the end of the project.

There will also be time for questions for the speakers and a sign up sheet for anyone who would like to get involved in Art School’s work.

Event dates/Location: The events will take place on 29 November 2017 and 7 December 2017 from 6pm. (Both events will take place in a central London location which will be announced shortly.)

How to book: Free tickets for Art Schools’ 29th November event can be booked at: https://artschool-november29th.eventbrite.co.uk

Free tickets for 7th December can be booked at: https://artschool-december7th.eventbrite.co.uk

Source: Direct Contact