Playhouse Playmaker 2020/2021
We received more applications to Playmaker than ever before, and the scripts received were of a very high quality. The range of voices, stories and approaches represented was inspiring. It was difficult - and horrible - having to select just six from so many impressive scripts. But I am very excited to be working with the six new Playmakers, who bring with them a rich and diverse range of experience, both personal and theatrical. And while they are different enough to provoke a lively culture of exchange and learning, what they have in common is that they all write with honesty, boldness and emotional truth. I can’t wait to get started. - Clare Bayley
Further information on our Playmakers can be found under the 'Playmakers 2020/2021' tab above.
Applications for Playhouse Playmaker are now CLOSED.
What is Playhouse Playmaker?
Playhouse Playmaker is a Writers Attachment Programme for playwrights at any stage of their career, led by award-winning playwright Clare Bayley. You can find out more about Clare on her website, and read her blog on the Oxford Playhouse website.
Up to six writers are invited to be a part of this year-long free programme, which runs between November and July 2020/2021.
From November until June, the group will meet one Saturday a month. The sessions will be delivered at Oxford Playhouse (or online, depending on circumstances) and consist of practical writing exercises, discussion and feedback on scripts.
In June 2021, the Playmakers have the opportunity to share an extract of their completed script as part of Offbeat Festival, rehearsed and performed by professional actors. You can listen to audio extracts of the 2019/20 Playmakers’ plays here.
JC Niala is a playwright, nature writer and poet. Her plays include The Strong Room, 2010 (shortlisted for BBC Africa Performance) and Unsettled, 2019 (Methuen, Bloomsbury) which was published in the second ever collection of plays by African women. Her films include Something Necessary, 2013 (prod. Tom Tykwer) and Wazi? FM, 2015 (Best Picture Zanzibar International Film Festival).
Her debut non-fiction book A Loveliness of Ladybirds was shortlisted for Canongate’s Nan Shepherd Prize in 2019 and will be published by Little Toller Books in 2022. An extract from the book, Fieldnotes from an African Anthropologist was awarded the Frank Allen Bullock Creative Writing Prize 2020 by St. Catherine’s College, University of Oxford.
Julie Tsang is a playwright from Glasgow. She was mentored with the Playwrights Studio Scotland and selected for the professional writer programme with Yellow Earth Theatre. Julie’s plays have won the Scotland Short Play Award with Cumbernauld Theatre and Listen Up! audio drama commission with Alphabetti Theatre.
Her recent work has been long-listed for the Bruntwood Prize and The Women's Prize for Playwriting. Credits include: All Noise - Theatre 503, Spring Lantern Riddles - Lyceum theatre/Royal Shakespeare Company, Fix - Pleasance theatre. Julie’s work will be staged at the 12th Women’s International Playwrights Conference in Montréal 2022.
Patrick Hughes is a Liverpool born playwright and dramaturg living in the south of London.
Previously working in National Theatre's New Work Department, he is currently Executive Assistant at Lyric Hammersmith Theatre. His first play was performed at Liverpool Everyman Theatre. Patrick has an MA in scriptwriting at University of East Anglia which he completed under the tutelage of Steve Waters and Timberlake Wertenbaker. He is a reader for a number of UK theatres as well as a creative writing workshop facilitator. His favourite way to cook eggs is to poach them.
Tabby Lamb is a non-binary writer and performer based in East London and a graduate of the Theatre Directing course at Dartington College of Arts. Equally inspired by Carly Rae Jepson and Tennessee Williams, they strive to tell stories that explore the intersections between popular culture and politics.
Their debut solo show SINCE U BEEN GONE, which Tabby wrote and performed, premiered at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2019, after previewing at the Gate Theatre. The show was spectacularly received by audiences and garnered a glowing 4* write up from the Guardian who called the play “bold, honest and swollen with love”. They are currently under commission at The Unicorn Theatre, The Place and 45North. Alongside their passion for writing, Tabby is a facilitator and runs creative arts projects for the LGBTQIA+ community.
Georgie Bailey is a working-class Playwright, Poet, Dramaturg and Producer. He is an alumnus of Soho Theatre, HighTide Theatre and Papatango’s respective writer development schemes and a recent graduate from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School’s Dramatic Writing MA.
Currently, Georgie is the Literary Projects Manager for London Playwrights Workshop, as well as Artistic Director of award-winning multi-arts company ChewBoy Productions; an Associate Company of the Lion and Unicorn Theatre and Living Records Festival. Alongside writing, he works as a freelance dramaturg; facilitating creative writing projects and workshops with people of all ages at venues such as Chichester Festival Theatre.
Rachel Tookey is a writer interested in exploring socio-political themes by telling stories that make us feel something.
Rachel’s debut play, BROMLEY BEDLAM BETHLEHEM, opened at the Old Red Lion in 2019, and was awarded the Methuen Drama / Marlowe Society ‘Other Prize’. It received critical praise, with The Stage calling it “a sensitive and sharp portrayal.”
A previous play, JUDGE JUDY’S BUZZ WORLD, won the Footlights’ Harry Porter Prize and received a short run at the ADC Theatre, before transferring to the Etcetera Theatre as part of the Camden Fringe.
Her short plays have been presented at Southwark Playhouse, HighTide Festival, The Arcola, Lyric Hammersmith, and Theatre503. She has been selected to take part in writers groups with Soho Theatre, The Almeida, HighTide, and Menagerie Theatre Company. In 2017, Rachel was commissioned by the Roundhouse to make her first short film, BLUR. She is represented by David Higham Associates.
Born in the dark heart of the Black Country. Paul studied Drama and Contemporary Theatre at Anglia Ruskin University. Since then, he has worked continuously within the performing art circles of Brighton and Cardiff. Paul is also the founder of ‘Zenpens’ a bi-monthly silent writers retreat for creative individuals.
Victoria Taylor Roberts
Winner of the EDALYA International Youth Theatre Playwright Award (2019) and the Kenneth Branagh Drama Writing Award (2015), Victoria Taylor Roberts is an experienced playwright with a catalogue of short plays produced for and performed on the UK independent theatre circuit. Under the banner, Wistful Thinking Productions, Victoria also writes, directs and produces short films, with several recently enjoying success on the international film festival circuit. In addition to her currently being part of the 2020 Oxford Playhouse’s writer-on-attachment program, Victoria regularly script-reads for other theatres and offers professional support to those undertaking academic writing.
Natalia Knowlton is a Chilean-Canadian playwright and theatre maker based in London. In her writing, she explores female sexuality, gender and Latinx/immigrant identity. She is also the Co-Founder/Co-Artistic Director of Crossline Theatre, a female-led theatre company that tells women's stories. Natalia has an MFA in Playwriting from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
London based creative, with a background in Sociology. Began writing and performing poetry in 2015, which developed into playwriting. 2016, Emerging Artist Award Winner for “When Harlem Met Kenya” (Arcola Theatre). 2018, “Van Gogh On The Beach” at Camden Fringe (Cockpit Theatre) and Voila Festival (Etcetera Theatre) before taking its sibling project “Amsterdam” to Edinburgh Fringe, both receiving 4 star reviews. 2019, “Broken English” had a successful run at Edinburgh Fringe, followed by a sold-out run at the Tristan Bates Theatre/ Actors Centre in January 2020.
Rowena Cooper (she/her) is a writer based in Oxford. She wrote her first play as part of the coursework for an MSt in Creative Writing at Oxford University, which she graduated from in 2018. This play, titled After Aulis, was awarded ‘Fringe Event of the Year’ when it debuted in The Attic Theatre in 2018. In 2019, it was shortlisted for ‘Best New Play’ by New Writing South. Alongside playwriting, Rowena is a poet and board member of the Oxford Poetry Library, where she runs community-based workshops for budding writers of all ages and abilities. Her poetry has featured in Shooter Lit, Claudius Speaks, Panoplyzine, and the anthology Somewhere to keep the rain. In 2019, Rowena won the Shooter Lit Poetry Prize, was shortlisted for the Plough Short Poem Prize, and had two poems longlisted in the National Poetry Competition. Keep a lookout for a forthcoming poem of hers in Issue 3 of Bath Magg and read more at rowenacooper.co.uk.
Samson is a theatre maker from south Northamptonshire and the artistic director of 'tomfool' theatre company. Samson's wrote and directed 'Swan Bake' which was performed at The Edinburgh Festival and Soho Theatre, 'The Underwhelming Adventures of Prozac Man and Low Self Esteem Boy' at The Bunker, and 'Death is Wasted on the Old' at The Avondale Theatre. Samson has previously been a member of The Royal Court Writer's Group, Soho Writers Lab and Greyscale Play Development Project. As a director, Samson has been the resident of the Oxford Playhouse and the trainee director of The Orange Tree Theatre. Samson is currently on commission with The Nottingham Playhouse and BBC Radio 4, he is also in training to become a drag wrestler.