Have you even considered writing your own play, but felt a little daunted by it all and in need of some direction. The Electric Sunshine Project’s New Views Play Writing Course starting in January could be what you are looking for.
The ten week course is aimed at anyone aged 16+ looking to build confidence in creative writing. It is held at The Oracle in South Shore and follows the framework of the acclaimed National Theatre Learning’s programme for emerging playwrights; New Views.
Each week participants gain insights from some of today’s most significant professional playwrights such as David Hare, Richard Bean and Roy Williams. Every session focuses on a different part of script writing. Each session is a mixture of practical exercises, discussions and feedback. Everybody is encouraged to work at their own pace. Participants can start from scratch with a new play, tighten existing pieces of writing or do both.
The inaugural running of the course has been taking place over recent weeks and I was invited to observe a couple of sessions. On 23 November an event was held at Blackpool and The Fylde College’s theatre department at Palatine campus. Professional actors gave readings of the work course participants had produced, and then the playwright discussed it with the invited audience. It was an enjoyable evening with a great variety of work on offer including some which had already been staged. Some of the audience suggestions as to how the unfinished works might develop were quite bold, and I thought the participants were receptive to these whilst knowing what wouldn’t work.
On Wednesday 29 November Liverpool playwright Lizzie Nunnery attended the session to give participants some advice from her own experience and others. A lot of very practical tips were provided, and for anyone who was struggling to develop inspiration I am sure this was a great help.
The course in run by Melanie Whitehead, who was with the National Theatre for several years. The next course is 7-9pm on Monday evenings from 15 January until 26 March (no class in school half term). Places are limited and so anyone interested should book their place online ASAP at
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