Who is this course for?
This course is open to anyone who wants to write a draft of a new play in a supportive, enriching and structured way over a 10-week period. If you are interested in different approaches to the craft and mechanics of playwriting, then this course is for you. You don’t need to have written for the stage before, although having some experience of writing for other mediums and/or some theatre experience would be helpful.
What the course covers.
The course runs for the first 6 weeks in two and a half hour sessions, meeting once a week over Zoom on a Tuesday (19:00 to 21:30 GMT+2).
- WEEK 1: Introduction
- A broad overview to playwriting and to writing dramatic action specifically for the stage.
- WEEK 2: Premise & Theme.
- Honing what you want to say/achieve. Exploring different approaches to developing a premise. Exploding your theme into its theatrical/dramatic potential.
- WEEK 3: Character & Dialogue.
- Creating a world of characters that best serve the interests of your premise / story-idea. Thinking about how you write dialogue that is character based and that serves the action and story.
- WEEK 4: Story & Story Beats.
- Understanding the difference between story and plot. How to effectively develop a story timeline. Using ABC storylines in plays. Beating your action.
- WEEK 5: Dramatic Time & Dramatic Space. (Structure)
- Time as a tool and a medium. Exploring ways to use time and space for a theatrical and thematic purpose.
- WEEK 6: Symbol, Metaphor, & Allegory.
- A look at story symbols and motifs. The power of symbols at the level of C storylines.
In weeks 7 to 9 the weekly sessions are 90-minutes long (Tuesdays, 20:00 to 21:30 GMT+2). These take the form of check-in and discussions about specific pieces of writing that the group is working on. You will also be able to book an individual one-hour session during this period over and above the 90-minute weekly group sessions. You could choose to either send me a piece of writing two days before having an individual session so that the one-on-one could be used to chat about how your writing is developing, OR you could use this one-on-one time as a brainstorming and troubleshooting moment. By working in this way the group keeps in touch with where everyone is at while also getting a chance for individual feedback.
In the final session, the whole group meets for a three-hour sharing and discussion. Here you have the option to share what you have been writing with the group before this session so that we can collectively discuss what you have been writing. This session will end with a summary of the ideas and tools covered across the course.
The overall course is designed to help:
- see various approaches to writing a play or piece of dramatic action for the stage.
- write in a creatively structured way by giving you a bunch of writing tools and exercises to stimulate and enrich the writing process.
- understand theatrical characters in a varied and nuanced way.
- select the ingredients you are using in your writing and give you tools to recognise whether these ingredients align with what you are wanting to write.
- use dramatic time and dramatic place as materials to thematically enrich your writing.
How to apply.
Applications to this course are now closed. If you’d like to hear about future opportunities like this, you can reach out via this site’s contact page.