Tag Archives: London

Write Now 7 announced

Jack Studio Theatre presents its Annual Playwriting Festival 

Write Now 7 1

Supported by the London Borough of Lewisham

Sponsored by Acorn Estates Ltd

Write Now 7

Submissions are now open for the annual new writing festival at the Jack Studio Theatre

Deadline for submissions: 29th January 2016

WRITE NOW 7 Festival: May 2016

The Jack Studio Theatre is proud to announce WRITE NOW 7, its annual new writing festival that will open in May 2016, and run for four weeks.Under the artistic direction of Kate Bannister, the WRITE NOW festival is an essential part of the Jack Studio Theatre’s yearly programme, and which each year looks to find and produce the most exciting, diverse and significant work of emerging writers who have a connection to south east London.

From the submissions of plays to a specific brief, in 2016 one play will be chosen for the month-long festival. It will appear alongside writing workshops, audience discussions, and the performance of seven new short plays.

For Write Now 7:

  • One winning play is given a full-production for three weeks
  • The playwright will be given the opportunity to fully explore and develop the play before rehearsals, with mentoring support from the director and Write Now dramaturg. The winning playwright also receives financial support to attend rehearsals and career development advice.

Past winners of the festival have gone on to have work developed and produced by the BBC writersroom, High Tide and The Liverpool Everyman.

The WRITE NOW festival is also about celebrating the local area of south east London, and the theatre’s connection and engagement with its audience. The festival is a wonderful celebration of this culturally diverse and dynamic area of London, with writers exploring themes and subject matter which resonates with the local audience and beyond.

The WRITE NOW FESTIVAL reading panel is led by Jack Artistic Director Kate Bannister and Literary Manager David Bottomley, and consists of the Jack’s associated artists and industry professionals. The final selection panel will be announced shortly.


We are now accepting submissions of scripts.

The deadline for this year’s applications is Friday 29 January 2016

Full guidelines and a 2016 application form are available on the Write Now page on our website: www.brockleyjack.co.uk

Scripts are submitted via email to: admin@brockleyjack.co.uk

London Borough of Lewisham

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Scratch is back!

ScratchScratch at The Jack was set up in 2009 by Tanith Lindon (Jack Associate Director) to provide a regular platform for acts and artists, from a wide range of performance disciplines, to try out and develop new work in front of an audience. We met up with Tanith to talk about how the Scratch nights work and why the audience is vital in developing new material.


Tell us about the Scratch nights

The whole idea behind Scratch at The Jack was to provide a home for artists making new work and for audiences interested in seeing something absolutely fresh off the page. We’ve had a variety of so many types of art form: readings of plays, monologues and short films, performed extracts, physical theatre, clowning, character comedy, sketch comedy, cabaret, storytelling, spoken word, poetry reading…and probably more that I have forgotten now!

When you’re devising work, or starting out writing, you really need to see how things work in practice and the beauty of Scratch is that you can show as little as the first 5 minutes of an idea or character, and get feedback on it. We don’t charge the writers/performers to enter a piece into Scratch, so it carries a much lower risk (and time frame) than most opportunities to perform on a London stage.

What makes a successful Scratch night?

I think the night works best with a real mix of pieces; that way it’s varied for the audience and hopefully the different groups performing can get some inspiration from someone doing something a bit different to them. We get very giving and supportive audiences, as well as a lot of regulars who come back each time.

The only thing that I’ve found doesn’t work is straight stand up. It’s tough for a stand up to go on to a stage that’s just had some very quiet emotional physical theatre piece and work up some laughs; on the other side it’s also not great when an audience gets given a bit of a grilling by a stand up with an aggressive style.

The night is about support and openness to experiment with work – and I think stand ups have the toughest time as it’s hard to feel that their work has been a success unless they get laughs.


How important is the audience for Scratch?

Essential! The whole point is to test out ideas and give the acts an experience that can really challenge them and hopefully guide their work. It can be very easy to forget about your audience as an artist, as the process of creating work can be so introspective. Scratch gives the audience a chance to tell artists exactly what they liked, and what just didn’t communicate.

We give all the audience members a form when they come in and encourage them to write down and tweet @BrocJackTheatre what they think worked and what could be improved upon for each act. It’s really interesting to see the comments they make – sometimes they can be so insightful, and I’ve had performers tell me that the feedback has really shaped the development of their work – whether that be in deciding the correct direction of the piece, or dropping something altogether as it clearly didn’t work!


How do you typically programme the nights?

I used to have to spend a lot of time approaching performers and writers to take part, but now we have enough of a name that most of the people involved come to me (via email). There’s no particular thing that I’m looking for, but I try to put acts together that will complement one another, and I won’t programme something if I don’t think it’s going to work or is really not at a stage where it is ready to be performed to a paying audience.


Any success stories?

Seeing an artist return to Scratch, clearly having taken on an audience member’s idea is a great feeling. Likewise, it’s wonderful when you get to see the finished product of an idea that began its life at Scratch.

A young theatre company called Antler http://www.antlertheatre.co.uk/ scratched less than 10 minutes of a story last year; at the time it was clear that they had something special happening between them, and I was delighted to eventually see the full show at The Bush Theatre’s Radar Festival last autumn (following a really successful summer at Edinburgh festival).

More recently, there’s been exciting news for other past Scratch regulars: Rob Auton http://www.robauton.co.uk/ was made Poet in Residence at this year’s Glastonbury Festival and comedians Max & Ivan http://maxandivan.com/ have just recorded a pilot show for Radio 4. It’s wonderful to think that we have formed some part of their continuing journey!


The next Scratch nights are Sunday 5th October and Sunday 14th December at 6pm

Tickets can be booked via our website www.brockleyjack.co.uk

To take part in a future Scratch event email Tanith: scratch@brockleyjack.co.uk

Huge thanks to http://shiftworkproductions.wordpress.com/ for the Scratch video

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The Jack Writers Workshop 2012

The Jack Writers Workshop 2012 is a dynamic hub for new stage writing in south London.

The workshop is a friendly, supportive group environment for writers of mixed abilities, both beginners and advanced, and covers all aspects of play writing from initial idea pitch to final script. It supports you in developing the writing of a short 10-15 minute play especially for the Jack Studio Theatre.

Some of these pieces will then be selected to be developed for performance in a special ticketed new writing night at the Jack Studio in the Spring of 2013.

We are now opening applications and places are strictly limited.
Therefore places will only be confirmed on receipt of payment by bank transfer.

This years price is £90 for the season. Workshops take place at the Jack Studio Theatre on a Monday evening when the theatre space is available 7.30pm- 9.30pm. (We reserve the right to change the venue or date if this is not possible)

Jack Writers Workshop dates:

October 8th, 29th
November 5th, 26th
December 17th
January 7th, 28th
Plus a final date tbc in February

Please send your email to writers@brockleyjack.co.uk to register your interest with full name and contact details.
We will send bank details by return of email.

Whilst we cannot accomodate everyone, we hope to keep you on the waiting list and keep you informed of all upcoming opportunities and other workshops at the Jack.

We look forward to hearing from you,

Best wishes

David Bottomley
Literary Manager
Brockley Jack Studio Theatre

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