I’m thrilled to say that my short play DROPPED SEQUINS for How It Ended Productions’ FUTURESPARK has been cast! Let me introduce the superb ladies…
First up (above) we have the delightful Stephanie Overington, a fresh young actress based in Luton. I recently worked with Stephanie on a charity video to raise awareness of self-harm. She has the right spark of naturalism and plays that vulnerability to suit the part of Natasha brilliantly. I’m really looking forward to working with her more directly and on some new writing.
Then we have Rachel Jackson who I’m really excited to be working with. I saw Rachel in a Coming Up (Channel 4) episode from a few years back, then saw her in a short play as part of RedFest last year, and both times she’s stuck out for me. She’s got the feistiness in her for sure and the boldness that completes the part of Gemma.
Two actresses who will bring my work to life under the direction from the lovely Madelaine Smith. Niceness.
REMINDER TO BOOK TICKETS! —> here
DROPPED SEQUINS for #FUTURESPARK is cast! July 2, 2013
I’m thrilled to say that my short play DROPPED SEQUINS for How It Ended Productions’ FUTURESPARK has been cast! Let me introduce the superb ladies…
FUTURESPARK with @how_it_ended June 16, 2013
I first encountered the theatre company How It Ended Productions on Twitter a few years ago. They were on the lips of many that I’d talked to, and I was intrigued by the work they put out. I even pledged some cash in their WeFund campaign to help them get to Edinburgh. I was all for helping out a theatre company, especially when they were so close to home (they’re based in Luton). I was excited to see their work and looking forward to meeting them. Then I got busy. Which meant that I didn’t get to see their work or meet them.
Skip forward a fews years and now they’ve mounting a short play of mine alongside others in their event called FUTURESPARK this July. So I will get to see their work, I will get to meet them and I’m obviously working with them. This pleases me so. My short play DROPPING SEQUINS will be directed by Madelaine Smith who I kind of know already from Twitter firstly, then through a mutual actor friend, and then because I invited her to a reading of one of my other plays to give feedback based on our previous interaction. There you go folks, as they sing in Bugsy Malone, “You give a little love and it all comes back to you (na, na, na, na-na-na-naaaaaaa)“.
So we’re casting this week and it’s quite a rhythmical piece, not intentional but it just came out that way. There’s dancing, some spoken word elements… It’s going to be fun. The springboard stimulus was the word ‘Carnival’. I ended up writing about two girls who are best friends getting ready to dance in the carnival – but they’re also planning something else untoward and the Carnival is the perfect cover. But aside from that, I should probably tell you the date, time, place .etc.
11th July – 8:00pm
12th July – 11:00am
The second performance is FREE and is for ANYONE! (But if you are a school and would like to arrange a group booking contact firstname.lastname@example.org) Both performances will be at the UK Centre For Carnival Arts (UKCCA) and you can buy tickets HERE!
It’s looking to be a treat with 8 short plays, live music and other happenings. I will obviously be in attendance, and if you can get your fine self there too it would be grand. As much as it’s nice getting work on at all, it’s especially nice getting it on so close to home. Come!
LONDON PRIDE is cast… AND ON SALE! March 16, 2013
Yup, it’s all auditioned out and we have our stellar cast. It was great sitting in on the auditions and meeting some of the talent out there. And as always you want to use everyone and have an interchangeable cast because you don’t want to send anyone away… But we whittled it down to a cast that I’m very excited to be working with. The most thrilling aspect of auditions for me, is when it’s the character talking in front of you and not the actor. They make me forget what I’ve written and make it seem like I’m snatching snippets of other people’s conversation. Definitely.
So without further ado, here be the cast:
Details of where and when and how much (including the rest of the programme for the Wandsworth Arts Festival & Fringe) can be found here: clicky linky (we’re on page 15, just so you know)
Tickets can be grabbed here: clicky-clicky-booky-booky
See you there? Mine’s a pint of gin.
London Threeway For New Work (@uglysisterprod & #SP4TT2012) November 1, 2012
I’ve got a short piece on as part of Ugly Sister‘s The Story Project 4 which means I’ll have my work performed as part of their curated line-up at three different venues on three different nights. It’s my first time working with this theatre company and they seem like Lovely lassies which is always a bonus.
Dates and places are as follows:
Sunday 18th November – The Arcola
Sunday 25th November – Southwark Playhouse
I’m extremely thrilled that I’m going to have some work performed at the Southwark Playhouse because out of the three, I’ve yet to be performed there. The brief was nice and open taking the title, ‘Tears, Terror and TwentyTwelve’ and a ten minute mark with basic props/set. As I’ve mentioned before I like having restrictions and this was a great task.
I’m chuffed with how my idea, ‘Lifetime Subscription‘ came together. I’ve written for two female voices which, for me, is a rarity but is fast becoming a good habit. The conceit is bold and quite expressive of how I feel as a person reacting to our current climate regarding tragic events reported in the media and the collective response. I’d like to think it holds a mirror up to a lot of folks and makes them think about their human response and the emotive responsibility we have to each other. It’s dark. And I enjoyed writing it. I don’t want to give too much away because it hinges on you being there in the moment. As far as I’m aware it’s the last thing I’ll have on this year that’s been asked of me so do come along to support all us writers and the company and if you want to buy me a gin you’re more than welcome. But do come up and say hallo because it’s nice when humans do that to each other.
Doing Things Theatrically Differently With @Soup_ToNuts August 21, 2012
One of the scripts I’ve been trundling along with nicely is a commission for new theatre company, Soup To Nuts, which now has a name after being a heart symbol quickly followed by the word ‘play’ for an extended period of time. The play has now been christened, ‘The Thump You Feel When You Fall‘ and has been through many incarnations from the start including a completely new narrative. Soup To Nuts is a new writing company formed by Jayne Edwards and Laura Atherton, who met whilst studying at Bretton Hall College. Their mission is to develop work in an open forum similar to devising where the creative process is shared and discussed. As part of their ethos I’m allowing them to be parry to the writing process of the script so they can both see the decisions/changes as the script progresses from being a nub of an idea to a fully grown finished version through the different drafts. This is really interesting because where my role of a scriptwriter has normally taken me before is handing over the finished product at the end ready for rehearsals. So it’s a nice working relationship where the respect is noticed from the beginning and we’re all learning how we develop ideas in our own creative roles. What they’ve learned from me is that I write stern notes chastising my stupid ideas and demands to rectify them.
The writing process is a lonely one. You spend an undisclosed amount of time trying to fling your story onto pages and hoping that it will stick. Then you have to make it interesting. And then you have to find some actors to read it. And of course find someone to stage it. Soup To Nuts’ ethos of opening up the development process to all those involved is not only informative but incredibly useful. After talking to many actors it’s clear that they have many questions about the simple task of writing but never have the real opportunity to act on them. Having the opportunity to open up the development at such an early stage in the writing experience was slightly daunting but extremely helpful. It’s rare for a playwright to still have the script in an undeveloped state to produce before actors. And it’s even rarer for actors who it’s written for, to read it and give feedback. The initial anxiety of handing over a script knowing it’s not finished soon vanished after the readthrough started. It was actually quite thrilling having an open discussion about the themes, narratives and characters with the actors as if we were further down the development path. The feedback was being explored knowing that the script was in a state of flux and sometimes it’s good for an outside eye at such an early stage to point out slithers of plot that have been forgotten or not tied up. Being so close to a script can blinker your ability to see what’s going on. By having actors who are invested in these characters that you’re still forming, it gives you the incentive to carry on. But more importantly it allows the writer to have an explorative relationship with the actors without the constraints of a rehearsal period and the end goal of a production. In no way was this new method restricting or hindering on the overall genesis of the script, if anything it’s added depth to the writing process.
Soup To Nuts can be found on Twitter: @Soup_ToNuts and Facebook here.
My First Restaging Of Work With @WeAreOryx August 18, 2012
**PLEASE NOTE THE DATE HAS NOW CHANGED TO TUESDAY 4TH SEPTEMBER**
Oryx Productions, some lovely folks who run a new writing pop up night at 93 Feet East, have selected one of the first short pieces I ever had performed in London to be included in their next night. The piece is called, “Love-Aged-28” and is part of the Interrobang Trilogy I had put on at The Book Club back in 2010. I’m really intrigued to see how it will differ from the original staging… It’s an odd piece to begin with, abstract with direct addressing to the audience, and in terms of theme it’s a little bizarre. A bit like “Brimstone And Treacle*” but with menthol fags and no forced sex.
If you’re free to come along to the FREE event, then please do. I’ll be there so come along and say howdy if you can make it. It’s Tuesday September 4th starting at 7ish and it’s in the bar. Which means gin, right? Right!
[the gin is not free]
*If you have not read this play, do. It’s the play that got me into being a playwright and that. At least the first ten things I wrote were a rip-off of it.
Terminal 92 with @C54TheatreCo July 2, 2012
On July the 19th, 20th and 21st C54 Theatre Company will be transforming Oliver’s Village Cafe in Belsize Park into an airport lounge. The evening is guaranteed to be an intimate affair if their Winters’ Tales event was anything to go by, which also sold out what with tickets being limited and all. I’ve been asked to write another monologue again and I’m chuffed I’ve been asked back. The audience that were there for the Christmas themed event last time were engaged, warm and extremely attentive. I really like that the small cafe completely welcomes a theatre crowd and this holiday/airport themed night is definitely going to be interesting. My piece, ‘Unattended Luggage‘, is a tough monologue but one that I’m really looking forward to an actor getting their teeth into and I’m definitely intrigued to see how it goes down with the crowd. Tickets are available on 0783 4317850 or contact them on the Facebook page here.
Brightest And Best February 9, 2012
I’ve always admired the stamina of other people in my industry through all the different sectors. One of those incredibly busy folks is that of Natalie Ibu. Whilst exposing New York to her directing talents she was also preparing for her next project, Brightest And Best, over here.
We Were Here and pilotLIGHT Theatre present the premiere of Brightest And Best. Written by Papatango New Writing Competition 2011 Runner Up, Matthew Morrison – this is a play about how we get trapped by the choices we make, how education prepares us for life and how it screws us up. Brightest and Best follows management consultant Rob as he decides it’s time to make a difference, only his new start might be the beginning of the end.
Natalie writes about meeting playwright Matthew Morrison…
“We met in 2009 and have developed a creative relationship, which started with Brightest and Best and has encompassed work for The Gate and The Old Vic Tunnels. With Brightest and Best, I was struck by the potency of the tale juxtaposed with the delicacy with which he weaves it. I remember thinking, ‘how do you create a live nose bleed on stage? I want to find out. I want to direct this play’ and three years later, here I am about to find out. I strongly believe that our only responsibility is to be truthful, authentic and committed to the work. To make things for and with each other. The rest – the breaks and the powers that be – will come, because they always do. So we’re doing it by ourselves and the rest will catch up with us.”
I for one will be going to see this. And I think you should too…
Box Of Tricks Are Moving (@bottc) February 4, 2012
It’s true. The thespian duo Box Of Tricks are moving… To Manchester to create more thespian goodness! But before they leave they’re throwing a party at The Yard in Hackney Wick and tickets are free, but do register for them otherwise they may all go before you turn up, just saying… It’s going to be rammed with new writing from voices past, voices present and future ones too so everywhere you turn you’ll be reminded of what great stuff we’ve got going on thanks to these guys.
Both Hannah and Adam have asked playwrights they’ve worked with before or would like to, to write a one page play using a starting word given to them which was either ‘Today‘, ‘Tomorrow‘ or ‘Yesterday‘. Some of the other playwrights include *ahem* Kenneth Emson, Daniel Kanaber, Hannah Nicklin, Elinor Cook, Siân Owen, Natasha James, Luke Barnes, Ross Armstrong, Jaki McCarrick, Michael Crowley, Catherine O’Shea, Hannah Mulder, Jai Rajani, Katie McCullough, Tom Morton Smith, Sarah Speak, Omar El-Khairy, Jon Brittain and Declan Feenan. As you can see, I was lucky enough to be asked to do such a thing and got given my word of ‘Tomorrow‘. Having never written a one page play before it gave me a neat challenge. But one that I thoroughly enjoyed and am really looking forward to seeing on its feet. My one page play is about those decisions we promise to stick to the night before we fall asleep, but do we all stick to them? One decision’s about what someone thinks is love and the other is about jacking it all in and running away. I’m well excited about the night as a whole and I can’t think of a better way to send these two off before they head oop Naaaarth.
It’s been an absolute pleasure working with these guys and they’ve helped me a lot with more things than they realise. They are two of the most passionate people I know who want to explore theatre for all it’s worth and meet more people in the doing. Love it. Niceness. Here’s to working with them again in the not so distant future. See you there!
Miniaturists 33 January 31, 2012
Coming up on Sunday 5th February at The Arcola is The Miniaturists, a collection of short plays that have been written by playwrights who have been invited to do so. And I have been kindly invited to write one and do so. Working alongside my brilliant director Abigail Graham and the superb actors Geraldine Alexander and a Josh Darcy, we’ll be airing an experiment of an idea that I really want to explore further. The piece is called ’18+’; Tom and Lily’s daughter was a porn actress until she was hit by a car. Tragic. The only way they can remember her is watching her back catalogue. It was her job, they are very proud of what she achieved. Disconnection of intimacy and how grief can alter our relationships with each other not just with the person in question. It’s a snapshot of a larger idea that I want to spend time really delving into, but at the moment I want to take the idea out for a spin to see if it’s got legs. And what better way to do it than this.
I’m in good company with the other invited writers being Jon Brittain, Brierley Thorpe, Kate Russell-Smith and Al Smith. I’m really looking forward to this short being put in front of an audience. The last few short pieces I’ve written have been a step apart from what I usually write in terms of chronological narrative and style, but I’m really enjoying this approach.
There are two performances, one at 5pm and the other at 8pm. Do come along and say hallo.
5 February 2012
5pm and 8pm