For theatre... online, non-professional, amateur
YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – Wales goes to… Wales

YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – Wales goes to… Wales

Image: Their Royal Highnesses watching MA actor Zoe Goriely perform a speech from Shakespeare.  Photo: Simon Gough Photography

Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama’s Extraordinary Year Ends with a Royal Visit from its President, The Prince of Wales

RWCMD has ended its academic year with a visit from its President, HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall.
Their Royal Highnesses spent the morning meeting staff, students and graduates, and learned more about how the College has managed through the pandemic and is now investing and fundraising to support the launch of exciting new programmes, including a re-designed undergraduate Music degree, a BA in Musical Theatre and a Foundation course in Scenic Construction.
“We are honoured to welcome Their Royal Highnesses to the Royal Welsh College during their week in Wales and it feels very special indeed to have our President with us as part of our final week of term,” said RWCMD Principal Helena Gaunt.
“Of course it’s been a challenging year for our College community but we’ve been able to continue our training throughout, and still create and programme a wide range of excellent performances in these remarkable spaces that have served us and our audiences so well over the last ten years.
“We are looking forward with ambition now and it is wonderful that we have had the opportunity to brief His Royal Highness about future strategies that will ensure we emerge stronger from the experience of the last 18 months as we fundraise and invest to widen access to training, deepen connections to the industries and develop our impact.”


YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – European Theatre Arts Programme Flourishing

YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – European Theatre Arts Programme Flourishing

Over thirty students from Rose Bruford College on its world-renowned European Theatre Arts Programme are now successfully on placements in Spain, Germany, the Czech Republic and France.

Students were due to travel in January 2021, but the surge in coronavirus cases in the UK and Europe and ensuing lockdowns meant plans were delayed.
Other obstacles included extra costs for enhanced testing, due diligence around insurance regulations and navigating each partner country’s individual visa and covid security regulations and bureaucratic requirements.
Rose Bruford College has a very high percentage of students undertaking placement abroad or on its UK campus. In 2018 it was recognised as one of the top twenty-five performing universities for student mobility in the world. After a successful bid for two years’ Erasmus funding in 2020, which enabled it to continue funding and supporting the cross-border collaboration and learning, Rose Bruford College intends to continue to provide financial support for students across the College to undertake these kinds of placements by applying to the UK Government’s new Turing Scheme.
The training is built on three foundational principles: working as an ensemble, crossing borders (artistic, cultural and geographical), innovation, and aims to train performers, makers, and practitioners who are proactive, adaptable and rigorous who can sustain careers in the performing and creative industries.

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YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – A Decade of Innovation and Collaboration

YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – A Decade of Innovation and Collaboration

RWCMD Fellow Kate Burton unveiled the bronze bust of her father, the great Welsh actor Richard Burton, opening the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama’s world-class facilities.

RWCMD Celebrates 10 years of its World-Class Performance Facilities

The award-winning new buildings included the acoustically outstanding Dora Stoutzker Concert Hall, the Richard Burton Theatre, the Carne Foyer and The Linbury Gallery.
The college launches a year of celebration with ten selected events over the course of the next year, showcasing all that it has achieved over the decade and signposting its ambition for the next ten years.
“The college believes passionately in our sense of artistic community and our world-class new buildings have enabled us to welcome students, artists and audiences of all ages from around the world, uniting them in a shared and fundamental belief in making work of the highest quality and in the value of the arts and artists,” said Principal Helena Gaunt.
“While celebrating our achievements over the last ten years we are also focused on looking forwards and enhancing the potential of future generations of diverse young artists who can become the change-makers and lead the power of the arts into the future.”
The ten events to celebrate the past decade are: The Flying Bedroom; Amser JazzTime; Celebrating the music of Errollyn Wallen; WNO Opera Gala; A Song for Us; Anthony & Kel Matsena; NEW ’22; Balance; Musical Theatre show; World Harp Congress.

YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – Student Wins National Theatre Competition!

YOUR NEWS (Youth, Student, Graduate) – Student Wins National Theatre Competition!

Image: Mackenzie Wellfare

National Theatre announces winner of 2021 nationwide New Views playwriting competition for young people


17-year-old student, Mackenzie Wellfare, from HSDC Alton in Hampshire has been announced as the winner of the National Theatre’s annual playwriting competition for 14–19-year-olds.

This year has seen more first drafts of scripts submitted to the competition than ever before, with the winning play, Perspective, selected from over 400 final entries from 74 secondary schools and colleges across the UK.

Inspired to write this play to share his own experience of autism as well as others’ Perspective by Mackenzie Wellfare explores the experiences of a teenage boy, Leo, with autism through his conversations with his best friend Shaun. Set in his bedroom, Leo’s big imagination fills the stage as he considers how the world sees him.

Perspective was selected from a shortlist of nine plays by a panel of judges including NT’s Head of Play Development Nina Steiger, playwright & screenwriter Beth Steel, playwright & performer Mojisola Adebayo and Jenny Sealey, Artistic Director of Graeae Theatre Company.

The play was performed in a full production by professional actors at the National Theatre and was also streamed to participating schools across the UK in July before the end of termtime, alongside rehearsed readings of seven shortlisted plays as part of the digital festival of new writing. Following the production, Mackenzie also took part in a live streamed Q&A about his play alongside the director.

The digital festival also showcased the work of a group of D\deaf students from Eastbury Community School’s Alternative Resource Provision.

The students have taken part in playwriting workshops facilitated by Jenny Sealey, Artistic Director of Graeae Theatre and have developed scenes exploring their experiences of the world. A selection of these scenes entitled Conversation Breakdown were directed by Jenny Sealey and performed as part of the rehearsed readings.

Mackenzie Wellfare said, “I’m so excited to have won! To have my play performed is just unbelievable and I can’t wait to see how it turns out! I want to show a perspective of Autism that I believe hasn’t been truly shown in modern media, and yet which some people experience every day of their lives.”

Jenny Sealey, Artistic Director of Graeae Theatre and member of the judging panel added, “Perspective has a matureness in its unpacking of the heart stuff. It’s an important play, beautifully simple in its mass of complexity.”

Nina Steiger, NT’s Head of Play Development and member of the judging panel, told us, “In what was a landmark year that took a particularly heavy toll on young people and the performing arts, it was thrilling for us to receive over 400 submissions from all over the UK. The final plays were about identity, imagination, and love and the bravery of expressing these elements of what makes us human, and perhaps what we’ve missed most in being together. That these plays were written at home in lockdown, developed with teachers and mentors over the difficult platform of group Zoom sessions, and that the voices in these plays nevertheless resonate with truthfulness, joy and life force is a testament to the importance of this programme and the self-expression it enables.”

This year the programme was delivered digitally through workshops with professional writers, a playwriting course and the opportunity to watch NT productions for free online, as well as a pre-recorded masterclass on writing for audio with Audible, the official Audio Partner of New Views. Students wrote their own original 30-minute plays, exploring topical issues from mental health and the pandemic to politics & relationships.

The seven shortlisted plays are:

  • In a Room with Gavin and Francesa
    by Aran Grover
    St Olave’s School, London
  • The Nursing Home
    by Charlotte D’Angelo
    Wimbledon High School, London
  • Childhood, War and Love
    by Ellie Sharman
    Ricard’s Lodge, London
  • Colour Inside the Lines
    by Jamila Salim – Haberdashers’
    Aske’s Boy’s School, Herts
  • Billionaire’s Row
    by Joel Wall
    Oxted School, Surrey
  • Bus Stops
    by Mia Galanti
    Lady Margaret School, London
  • Rose Coloured Glasses
    by Nyah With
    Southend School for Girls, Essex


New Plays,  Books & Musicals

New Plays, Books & Musicals

Our regular up-to-date selection of recently published books as well as new or re-released plays and musicals, many of which are now available for amateur performance. As a result of the pandemicsome licensors are now offering special online-performance arrangements, so please get in touch with the appropriate company to find out more. Show listings are not proof that respective titles are available for amateur performance. Please make appropriate enquiries with respective licensors.


F: ConcordShows | T: @ConcordUKShows

A GIRL IN A CAR WITH A MAN by Robert Alan Evans

Full-Length Play, Drama / F2, M3 / Contemporary / 978 0 573 13217 9 / £9.99

As Stella leaves her job at the shopping channel, Alex prepares for a night out, and Paula can’t stop thinking of the girl who’s gone missing, her face all over the news. Slowly the missing girl weaves her way through all their lives in the course of a very wet and wild night.



THE GRINNING MAN by Carl Grose, Tom Morris, Tim Phillips, Marc Teitler

Full-Length Musical, Dark Comedy / F5, M7 / Fantasy / 978 0 573 13220 9 / £9.99

A strange new act has arrived at Trafalgar Fair’s freakshow. Who is Grinpayne and how did he get his hideous smile?
With the help of an old puppeteer, his pet wolf and a blind girl, Grinpayne’s tale is told. When word spreads across the capital, everything changes. Desperate to know the terrible secrets of his mysterious past, Grinpayne leaves his true love behind and embarks on a journey into an even crueller world – the aristocracy.
The Grinning Man is a fairy-tale love story streaked with pitch-black humour, lashings of Gothic horror and swashbuckling adventure. It opened at Bristol Old Vic in 2016 to great acclaim and transferred to the West End’s Trafalgar Studios in 2017 where it achieved cult status and rave reviews.
The musical premiered at Bristol Old Vic in 2016, with a production directed by Tom Morris. Following the success of the Bristol run, the show transferred to Trafalgar Studios in the West End from 5 December 2017.


Full-Length Play, Drama / F1, M1 / Contemporary / 978 0 573 11662 9 / £9.99

Leonard and Violet, young, restless and in love, spend their first night together knowing it may also be their last. It’s 1942 and, in a hotel room in Bath, they dream of their future while preparing for Leonard’s departure to the war. But the bombs begin.




Monologues, Comedy / F1 / Contemporary, Present Day / 978 0 573 13260 5 / £9.99

This title is not currently available for performance. To be informed as soon as it becomes available in the future, please submit a license application.
For a long time I didn’t know how it’d work.
Or what I’d be able to feel.
People would ask me if I could have sex and I’d feign shock and act wildly offended whilst secretly wanting to grab them by the shoulders and be like “I don’t know, Janet!”
Juno was born with spina bifida and is now clumsily navigating her twenties amidst street healers, love, loneliness – and the feeling of being an unfinished project.
Winner of The Women’s Prize for Playwriting 2020, Amy Trigg’s remarkable debut play Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me is a hilarious, heart-warming tale about how shit our wonderful lives can be.


Full-Length Musical, Comedy / F3, M3, Girl(s)1, Boy(s)3 / 1980s / 978 0 573 11665 0 / £9.99

Life’s pretty hard when you’re a 13¾-year-old misunderstood intellectual living in a cul-de-sac in 1981. With dysfunctional parents, ungrateful elders and a growing debt to school bully Barry Kent, Adrian Mole’s life simply couldn’t get any worse. So when luminous new girl Pandora joins Adrian’s class, things look set to change for our hapless hero. She immediately captures his heart, only for his best friend Nigel to steal hers…
Based on the classic bestselling novel by Sue Townsend, this critically acclaimed West End musical brings Britain’s best-loved spotty teenager’s story to life for a new generation of theatregoers.
Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application. Please submit a license request to determine availability.
“…warm and joyful energy.” – Evening Standard
“…the musical precisely captures the growing pains of a self-aware Leicester boy with literary leanings.” – The Guardian
“Delightful” – The New York Times
“endearing and thoroughly enjoyable…” – Independent
“…a continual mood of unforced tongue-in-cheek freshness.” – The Telegraph


Full-Length Play, Drama / Large cast (smaller possible) / Contemporary / 978 0 571 31558 1 / £9.99

This title is not currently available for performance. To be informed as soon as it becomes available in the future, please submit a license application.
The Two Worlds of Charlie F. moves through the stages of service, from the war in Afghanistan, to dream-like states of morphine-induced hallucinations, to the physio rooms of Headley Court. All through the view of soldier Charlie Fowler’s service, injury and recovery. The play explores themes of physical and psychological injury and its effects on soldiers as they fight for survival.
Drawn from the personal experience of the wounded, injured and sick service personnel involved, The Two Worlds of Charlie F. premiered at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, London, in January 2012 and toured nationally. It was revived for an international tour in 2014.


Full-Length Play, Drama / M2 / Contemporary / 978 0 573 13259 9 / £9.99

This title is not currently available for performance. To be informed as soon as it becomes available in the future, please submit a license application.
“So there’s a theory that we all have a finite number of heartbeats. We all have a billion heartbeats to live. Humans, cats, dogs, rats – all our hearts beat at different speeds but we all have the same amount. A clock with a billion ticks.”
Inspired by the incredible true story of the last greater mouse-eared bat living in Britain, Vespertilio explores the tender romance between introverted bat-enthusiast Alan and Josh, the charming young runaway he meets in an abandoned railway tunnel. As their relationship develops, these two damaged men might fix one another. If only a little. Vespertilio is a story of love, loneliness and bats, an exploration of the difference between merely surviving and truly living.

WARHEADS by Tarek Skylar, Ross Berkeley Simpson

Full-Length Play, Drama / F2, M4 / Contemporary / 978 0 573 13258 2 / £9.99

This title is not currently available for performance. To be informed as soon as it becomes available in the future, please submit a license application.
Upon return from his first tour of Afghanistan, 19-year-old Miles isn’t quite himself. Noises don’t sound the same. People don’t look the same. Pizza doesn’t taste the same.
The harder he tries to act normal, the harder it gets to be normal. And all his loved ones’ attempts to help him just keep making things worse.
The play oscillates between multiple timelines. We get to see glimpses of the child that was Miles Weppler before he signed up for the army, the man he’s become post war, and everything that happened in-between. We get an intimate view into what motivates a young man towards the military, and what motivates him to stay in the military, at any cost.
Through the eyes of his therapist, he’s just a lost boy. Through the eyes of his girlfriend, he’s a stubborn and sometimes scary man. Through the eyes of his best friend, he’s paranoid. And through his not-so-best friend’s eyes, Weppler’s just a dick.
Warheads is a punchy, urban drama based on a true story.


Music Theatre International (Europe)

T: 020 7580 2827
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F: mtieurope | T: mtieurope

The Hunchback of Notre Dame – Book: Peter Parnell. Music: Alan Menken. Lyrics: Stephen Schwartz

Based on the Victor Hugo novel and songs from the Disney animated feature, The Hunchback of Notre Dame showcases the film’s Academy Award-nominated score, as well as new songs by Menken and Schwartz. Peter Parnell’s new book embraces story theatre and features verbatim passages from Hugo’s gothic novel.
The musical begins as the bells of Notre Dame sound through the famed cathedral in fifteenth-century Paris. Quasimodo, the deformed bell-ringer who longs to be ‘Out There,’ observes all of Paris reveling in the Feast of Fools. Held captive by his devious caretaker, the archdeacon Dom Claude Frollo, he escapes for the day and joins the boisterous crowd, only to be treated cruelly by all but the beautiful gypsy, Esmeralda. Quasimodo isn’t the only one captivated by her free spirit, though – the handsome Captain Phoebus and Frollo are equally enthralled. As the three vie for her attention, Frollo embarks on a mission to destroy the gypsies – and it’s up to Quasimodo to save them all. A sweeping score and powerful story make The Hunchback of Notre Dame an instant classic. Audiences will be swept away by the magic of this truly unforgettable musical.

Disney’s THE LITTLE MERMAID – Book: Doug Wright. Music: Alan Menken. Lyrics: Howard Ashman & Glenn Slater

Based on one of Hans Christian Andersen’s most beloved stories and the classic animated film, Disney’s The Little Mermaid is a hauntingly beautiful love story for the ages. With music by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater, and a compelling book by Doug Wright, this fishy fable will capture your heart with its irresistible songs including ‘Under the Sea,’ ‘Kiss the Girl,’ and ‘Part of Your World.’
Ariel, King Triton’s youngest daughter, wishes to pursue the human Prince Eric in the world above and bargains with the evil sea witch, Ursula, to trade her tail for legs. But the bargain is not what it seems and Ariel needs the help of her colorful friends Flounder the fish, Scuttle the seagull, and Sebastian the crab to restore order under the sea.
Disney’s The Little Mermaid offers a fantastic creative opportunity for rich costumes and sets, and the chance to perform some of the best-known songs from the past thirty years.

Roald Dahl’s MATILDA THE MUSICAL JR. – Book: Dennis Kelly. Music & Lyrics: Tim Minchin.

Rebellion is nigh in Matilda JR., a gleefully witty ode to the anarchy of childhood and the power of imagination! This story of a girl who dreams of a better life and the children she inspires will have audiences rooting for the “revolting children” who are out to teach the grown-ups a lesson.
Matilda has astonishing wit, intelligence… and special powers! She’s unloved by her cruel parents but impresses her schoolteacher, the highly loveable Miss Honey. Matilda’s school life isn’t completely smooth sailing, however – the school’s mean headmistress, Miss Trunchbull, hates children and just loves thinking up new punishments for those who don’t abide by her rules. But Matilda has courage and cleverness in equal amounts, and could be the school pupils’ saving grace!
Packed with high-energy dance numbers and catchy songs, Matilda JR. is a joyous girl power romp. Children and adults alike will be thrilled and delighted by the story of the special little girl with an extraordinary imagination.



Nick Hern Books

T: 020 8749 4953
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F: NickHernBooks | T: @NickHernBooks

Hamilton and Me AN ACTOR’S JOURNAL by Giles Terera

Theatre book / 978 1 848 42999 4 / Special Offer – see cover story

‘One of the most joyous and clear-eyed approaches to playing a character that I have ever read… I am so grateful Giles took notes on his process and turned them into this book. I was already in awe of his performance; now I’m in awe of his humanity and attention to detail and willingness to share the hard work and magic that goes into it.’ Lin-Manuel Miranda, from his Foreword.

‘One of the most joyous and clear-eyed approaches to playing a character that I have ever read… I am so grateful Giles took notes on his process and turned them into this book. I was already in awe of his performance; now I’m in awe of his humanity and attention to detail and willingness to share the hard work and magic that goes into it.’
Lin-Manuel Miranda, from his Foreword
Our latest cover star’s book is published on the same day as this new, back-to-print edition of Sardines. Make sure you read our interview with Giles Terera on page 14.
When Lin-Manuel Miranda’s groundbreaking musical ‘Hamilton’ opened in London’s West End in December 2017, it was as huge a hit as it had been in its original production off- and on Broadway. Lauded by critics and audiences alike, the show would go on to win a record-equalling seven Olivier Awards – including Best Actor in a Musical for Giles Terera, for his portrayal of Aaron Burr.
For Terera, though, his journey as Burr had begun more than a year earlier, with his first audition in New York, and continuing through extensive research and preparation, intense rehearsals, previews and finally opening night itself. Throughout this time he kept a journal, recording his experiences of the production and his process of creating his award-winning performance. This book, ‘Hamilton and Me’, is that journal.
It offers an honest, intimate and thrilling look at everything involved in opening a once-in-a-generation production – the triumphs, breakthroughs and doubts, the camaraderie of the rehearsal room and the moments of quiet backstage contemplation – as well as a fascinating, in-depth exploration of now-iconic songs and moments from the musical, as seen from the inside. It is also deeply personal, as Terera reflects on experiences from his own life that he drew on to help shape his acclaimed portrayal.
Illustrated with dozens of colour photographs, many of which are shared here for the first time, and featuring an exclusive Foreword by Lin-Manuel Miranda, this book is an essential read for all fans of Hamilton – offering fresh, first-hand insights into the music and characters they love and know so well – as well as for aspiring and current performers, students, and anyone who wants to discover what it really felt like to be in the room where it happened.

15 Heroines by Various authors

Monologues / short plays / f15 max. / Various settings, can be simply staged / 978 1 848 42986 4 / £10.39 direct from the publisher

Fifteen inspirational women – queens, sorcerers, pioneers, poets and politicians – are given new voice in this award-winning series of monologues by exciting female and non-binary playwrights, inspired by Ovid’s The Heroines. These monologues can be performed as three complete productions, individually, or in any combination.
“Compelling… sometimes funny, often moving, this is a phenomenal collection of monologues.”


Chaos by Laura Lomas

Full-length play / Flexible – any size, any gender / Various settings, can be simply staged / 978 1 848 42987 1 / £7.99 direct from the publisher

A series of characters search for meaning in a complicated and unstable world in this symphony of interconnected scenes. Written specifically for young people as part of the National Theatre Connections Festival, it offers opportunities for a large, flexible cast, and can incorporate chorus work, movement and music.
“Potent, beautifully crafted, with rich theatrical texture.”
The Stage on Laura Lomas’ ‘Bird’


Little Wars by Steven Carl McCasland

Full-length play / F7 / Country home in the French Alps, 1940 / 978 1 839 04003 0 / £7.99 direct from the publisher

An enthralling, entertaining, and moving portrait of seven exceptional women. A dinner party during the Second World War unites a group of celebrated writers – including Agatha Christie, Dorothy Parker and Gertrude Stein – with a mysterious guest. With booze flowing, barbs flying, and the threat of global conflict looming, the guests are close to boiling point – and someone has a secret.
“The script is smart and witty… admirably bold and asks big questions.” The Stage


Stuff by Tom Wells

Full-length play / F5, M4 / Various settings, can be simply staged / 978 1 848 42988 8 / £7.99 direct from the publisher

A funny, touching play about friendship and loss – and the way people try to do the right thing for their mates when there isn’t really a right thing to do. Written specifically for young people as part of the National Theatre Connections Festival, it offers rich opportunities for an ensemble cast of teenagers.

“Perceptive about the characters’ concerns and insecurities… Tom Wells clearly understands teenagers, so we really do believe what we are seeing”
British Theatre Guide on Tom Wells’ ‘Broken Biscuits’



Bloomsbury – Methuen Drama

T: 01256 302699
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F: BloomsburyPublishing | T: @bloomsburybooks

Hamlet: The State of Play – Edited by Sonia Massai & Lucy Munro

Theatre Book / 978 1 350 11772 3 / £67.50 (Online, Hardback)

This collection brings together emerging and established scholars to explore fresh approaches to Shakespeare’s best-known play. Hamlet has often served as a testing ground for innovative readings and new approaches. Its unique textual history – surviving as it does in three substantially different early versions – means that it offers an especially complex and intriguing case-study for histories of early modern publishing and the relationship between page and stage. Similarly, its long history of stage and screen revival, creative appropriation and critical commentary offer rich materials for various forms of scholarship.
The essays in Hamlet: The State of Play explore the play from a variety of different angles, drawing on contemporary approaches to gender, sexuality, race, the history of emotions, memory, visual and material cultures, performativity, theories and histories of place, and textual studies. They offer fresh approaches to literary and cultural analysis, offer accessible introductions to some current ways of exploring the relationship between the three early texts, and present analysis of some important recent responses to Hamlet on screen and stage, together with a set of approaches to the study of adaptation.

Shakespeare in the Theatre: Peter Hall – Stuart Hampton-Reeves

Theatre Book / 978 1 472 58708 4 / £17.99 (Online, Paperback)

Peter Hall is one of the most significant and influential directors of Shakespeare’s work of modern times. Through both his own work and the management of two national theatre companies, the National Theatre and the RSC, Hall has promoted Shakespeare as a writer who can comment incisively on the modern world.
His best productions exemplified this approach: Coriolanus (1959), The Wars of the Roses (1963) and Hamlet (1965) established his reputation as a director able to bring Shakespeare to the heart of contemporary politics. However, Hall’s career has been very varied, and sometimes his critical failures are as interesting as his successes. The book explores Hall’s work as a deliberate articulation of Shakespeare and national culture in the post-war years. The main focus is on his Shakespeare work, but critical attention is also given to non-Shakespearean productions, notably his 1955 Waiting for Godot (and his relationship with Samuel Beckett in general) and his 2000 Tantalus (and his work with John Barton), placing Hall’s work in its cultural and creative context.
Setting Hall’s work against the post-war development of national culture, the book explores how his work with other writers and artists (including Beckett, Pinter and Barton) informed his approach to directing as well as his rehearsal methods and his approach to Shakespeare’s text.

Staging Britain’s Past Pre-Roman Britain in Early Modern Drama – Kim Gilchrist

Theatre Book / 978 1 350 16334 8 / £67.50 (Online, Hardback)

Staging Britain’s Past is the first study of the early modern performance of Britain’s pre-Roman history. The mythic history of the founding of Britain by the Trojan exile Brute and the subsequent reign of his descendants was performed through texts such as Norton and Sackville’s Gorboduc, Shakespeare’s King Lear and Cymbeline, as well as civic pageants, court masques and royal entries such as Elizabeth I’s 1578 entry to Norwich. Gilchrist argues for the power of performed history to shape early modern conceptions of the past, ancestry, and national destiny, and demonstrates how the erosion of the Brutan histories marks a transformation in English self-understanding and identity.
When published in 1608, Shakespeare’s King Lear claimed to be a “True Chronicle History”. Lear was said to have ruled Britain centuries before the Romans, a descendant of the mighty Trojan Brute who had conquered Britain and slaughtered its barbaric giants. But this was fake history. Shakespeare’s contemporaries were discovering that Brute and his descendants, once widely believed as proof of glorious ancient origins, were a mischievous medieval invention.
Offering a comprehensive account of the extraordinary theatrical tradition that emerged from these Brutan histories and the reasons for that tradition’s disappearance, this study gathers all known evidence of the plays, pageants and masques portraying Britain’s ancient rulers. Staging Britain’s Past reveals how the loss of England’s Trojan origins is reflected in plays and performances from Gorboduc’s powerful invocation of history to Cymbeline’s elegiac erosion of all notions of historical truth.

ANGELA – Mark Ravenhill

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 25559 3 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

Mark Ravenhill’s autobiographical radio play explores the way culture, high and low, impacted both his mother’s and his family’s lives.
Starting an adult ballet class as the only male in the group sparks a memory of life through the eyes of Ravenhill, the playwright. As time intertwines through alternating perspectives we see his family at different stages of their life. From childhood dreams of being a dancer and performer through to the creativity that brings his parents together for the first time and into their old age, this is a deeply personal and resonate drama about the intersects of life and culture.
Commissioned by Sound Stage, a new immersive audio theatre, designed by theatre-makers and leading technologists, giving audiences a unique and engrossing online theatre experience of new plays from the best in British theatre.

CRUISE – Jack Holden

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 27069 5 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

Set in London’s Soho in the 1980s, Cruise tells the story of what should have been Michael Spencer’s last night on Earth. Diagnosed with HIV in 1984, he’s told by doctors that he has just four years to live, so as the clock runs down, Michael decides to go out in style. As he parties and bids final farewells to his friends, the clock strikes zero and Michael… survives. With the gift of life, how can he go on living?
Jack Holden’s debut play Cruise is a kaleidoscopic new monologue celebrating queer culture and paying tribute to a generation of gay men lost to the AIDS crisis. This edition was published to coincide with its West End production in May 2021.


Hymn – Lolita Chakrabarti

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 24305 7 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

Two men meet at a funeral. Gil knew the deceased. Benny did not. Before long their families are close. Soon they’ll be singing the same tune.
Benny is a loner anchored by his wife and children. Gil longs to fulfill his potential. They develop a deep bond but as cracks appear in their fragile lives they start to realise that true courage comes in different forms.
Featuring music from Gil and Benny’s lives, Lolita Chakrabarti’s searching, soulful new play asks what it takes to be a good father, brother or son.
This edition was published to coincide with the world premiere at London’s Almeida Theatre in February 2021.


Mugabe, My Dad and Me – Tonderai Munyevu

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 18607 1 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

April, 1980. The British colony of Rhodesia becomes the independent nation of Zimbabwe. A born-free, Tonderai Munyevu is part of the hopeful next generation from a country with a new leader, Robert Mugabe.
Mugabe, My Dad and Me charts the rise and fall of one of the most controversial politicians of the 20th Century through the lens of Tonderai’s family story and his relationship with his father. Interspersing storytelling with Mugabe’s unapologetic speeches, this high-voltage one man show is a blistering exploration of identity and what it means to return ‘home’.



Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 26709 1 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

Early one morning on Putney Bridge, three strangers’ lives collided for one fleeting second.
Inspired by real events, Once Upon a Bridge weaves a tale about human triumph and frailty, about the power of destiny and chance, and why sometimes we choose to hate and other times we choose to dance.
Commissioned by Ireland’s Druid Theatre and live-streamed from Mick Lally theatre in Galway, Sonya Kelly’s latest play received a string of excellent reviews for its bold intimacy and engaging story telling.


Orpheus in the Record Shop …and… The Beatboxer – Testament

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 26766 4 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

Two new plays from acclaimed rapper and playwright Testament (Black Men Walking).

Orpheus in the Record Shop
Orpheus is alone, playing tunes in his record shop. After a visitor leaves him an unexpected gift strange things start to happen and music, myth and reality collide. Together with Orpheus we go in search of something ancient, contemporary and hopeful.

The Beatboxer
A beatboxer goes into a call centre to run a training day. But the bosses have ulterior motives for him being there.
Testament takes inspiration from the classical Greek myth of Orpheus, in a show that fuses spoken word and beatboxing with the musicians of the Orchestra of Opera North. Published alongside his radio play The Beatboxer which was shortlisted for The Imison Award, BBC Audio Drama Awards, these two plays are inspiring pieces of contemporary theatre. Orpheus in the Record Shop was broadcast as part of the #BBCLightsUp season on BBC television in 2021.

Sadie – David Ireland

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 25657 6 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

Sadie has a one-night stand with the new office temp, Joao, but it develops into something much more serious when Joao reveals he’s in love with her. Sadie is flattered but she has a long history of terrible relationships. She wonders if it’s even possible for her to be happy in love? To answer that question, she calls upon her long dead uncle Red and her abusive ex-husband Clark, as well as her new therapist Mairead. Together they help her face some horrifying truths she’s kept hidden for too long.
Lyric Theatre Belfast, in association with Stephen Rea’s Field Day Theatre Company, bring this powerful new play to the stage, to be broadcast on BBC Four as part of BBC Arts ‘Lights up’ for the new Culture in Quarantine Season – a celebration of British theatre, bringing newly-recorded staged productions from UK theatres to audiences across television, radio, iPlayer and BBC Sounds.
Directed by Conleth Hill (Lord Varys, Game of Thrones) it stars award-winning actress Abigail McGibbon.

TARANTULA – Philip Ridley

Full-Length Play / 978 1 350 27445 7 / £9.89 (Paperback, Online)

It’s a sunny, spring day in East London.
On a street corner, two teenagers kiss.
One of them is Toni. This is her first kiss.
It makes her very happy.

But someone is watching.
Someone who doesn’t care about her happiness at all.
And they’re about to change Toni’s life… forever.

Philip Ridley’s thrilling new play is a startling exploration of identity, memory, love, and the lengths it takes someone to free themselves from the web of their past.



The Crowood Press

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Shakespearean Wig Styling A Practical Guide to Wig Making for the 1500s-1600s – Brenda Leedham and Lizzee Leedham

Theatre book / 978 1 785 00882 5 / £16.99

The poetry and plays of William Shakespeare continue to provide inspiration for designers in all aspect of media. Shakespearean Wig Styling offers detailed historical guidance on the styles and fashions of the day, and guides yo through twelve different wig designs covering a wide range of archetypal Shakespearian characters. Each example offers different techniques to meet the needs of the design, from material, knotting and curling to the final styling choices. Covering both the Tudor and Stuart periods, there are clear instructions within each example for making wigs from start to finish and adapting from the universal full-lace foundation to create alternative foundations, including added support for complicated styles such as the fontange.

In addition, the book covers:

  • what to expect when working in the theatre or as a freelance wig-maker;
  • fitting your client, measuring and taking a shell;
  • methods for preparing the hair under a wig;
  • knotting facial hair, hairpieces, hairlines, napes and partings;
  • methods for breaking or dirtying down;
  • creating bald caps and receding hairline effects.

This comprehensive book is an ideal companion for the newly qualified wig-maker and all professionals looking for a detailed reference guide to hairstyles from the Shakespearean era.



Theatrical Rights Worldwide

T: 020 7101 9596
F: TRWMusicalsUK | T: @trwmusicalsuk

Million Dollar Quartet – Colin Escott, Floyd Mutrux

Full Length Musical / F1, M7 / 1950s / Memphis, Tennessee, USA / Rock and Roll

The Tony® Award-nominated musical is set on December 4, 1956, when an extraordinary twist of fate brought Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley together at Sun Records in Memphis for what would be one of the greatest jam sessions ever.
MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET brings that legendary December night to life with an irresistible tale of broken promises, secrets, betrayal and celebrations that is both poignant and funny. Relive the era with the smash-hit sensation featuring an incredible score of rock ‘n’ roll, gospel, R&B and country hits, performed live onstage by world-class actors and musicians.
Showcased numbers include ‘Blue Suede Shoes,’ ‘Fever,’ ‘Walk the Line,’ ‘Sixteen Tons,’ ‘Who Do You Love?,’ ‘Great Balls of Fire,’ ‘Folsom Prison Blues,’ ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,’ ‘Hound Dog,’ and more.

Priscilla Queen of the Desert – The Musical – Stephan Elliott, Allan Scott

Full Length Musical / F7, M9, Boy(s)1 / 1990s / Australia / Pop Rock, Comedy

Based on the popular 1994 film of the same name, Priscilla Queen of the Desert follows two drag queens and a transsexual who buy a run-down old bus (they call it Priscilla) and set out on a road trip across the Australian Outback when one of them, Tick, is invited by his ex-wife to perform his drag show at her far-away resort. However, Tick is hesitant to tell his friends, Bernadette (a former performing icon whose best days are behind her) and Adam (a rambunctious young troublemaker), his own personal reasons for taking the trip.
During their journey, the trio encounters an array of Australian citizens.


All Shook Up – Inspired by and featuring the songs of Elvis Presley. Book: Joe DiPietro

Full Length Musical / F5, M4, Flexible ensemble / 1955 / Various settings / Rock ‘n’ Roll

It’s 1955, and into a square little town in a square little state rides a guitar-playing young man who changes everything and everyone he meets.
Loosely based on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, this hip-swiveling, lip-curling musical fantasy will have you jumpin’ out of your blue suede shoes with such classics as ‘Heartbreak Hotel,’ ‘Hound Dog,’ ‘Jailhouse Rock,’ and ‘Don’t Be Cruel.’


MONTY PYTHON’S SPAMALOT A Socially Distant Concert-ish Version – Book, Lyrics & Music by Eric Idle. Music by John Du Prez

Full Length Musical Comedy / F1, M6, Many casting opportunities for female roles in the ensemble. / Middle ages / King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table / Various (Monty Python)

To address social distance restrictions during the pandemic of 2020, this “concert-ish” version of Spamalot is intended to be played to a socially separated audience by a cast of socially separated actors, appropriately placed.
To avoid closely placed musicians and stage crew, TRW recommends the use the recorded full orchestration, StageTracks, and the scenic projections that were designed in collaboration with the original 2005 Broadway production.

YOUR NEWS – New School… New Adventure

YOUR NEWS – New School… New Adventure

Photos: Alicia Clarke


New Adventures has announced a brand-new training programme, Cygnet School, principally funded by The Dorfman Foundation.
The programme will be resident at The Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury for the next three years. Not to be mixed up with ‘Cygnet Theatre’ in Exeter which also happens to train tomorrow’s performers (who, I bet, are more than a bit miffed!), swans & cygnets are pretty synonymous with Sir Matthew Bourne. His all-male production of Swan Lake is the stuff of legend – whether you’ve seen Billy Elliot or not!
Matthew Bourne’s Cygnet School is a dance training programme for young people predominantly from backgrounds with limited access to arts provision and has been developed as part of New Adventures commitment to increase diversity in the sector and provide equity of opportunity.
This programme fills a fundamental gap between young people participating at a grass-roots level through their engagement work and those who progress onto vocational training. Believing that talent is everywhere but opportunity is not, they are committed to changing this through the launch of Cygnet School.

The first cohort of twelve young dancers aged 12-24 from across the country will take part in an annual programme of monthly workshops and holiday residencies at The Marlowe Theatre launching in July 2021. Cygnet School will harness raw potential, enabling participants to develop a breadth of creative performance skills and a passion for dance to equip them with a range of skills and training to progress into the second year of Cygnet School training or onwards.
This might be through other New Adventures pathways including Swan School or other creative opportunities and vocational training across the dance sector.
Participants have been identified through New Adventures’ wider participation work including Sadler’s Wells Curtain Raiser, 2020 (residency and response piece to the production of The Red Shoes), Civil Blood, 2019 (performance partnership with Dance United Yorkshire and Studio 3 Arts, London), Romeo and Juliet auditions, 2019 (engaging eighty of the finest emerging artists aged 16-19 alongside professional dancers over thirteen UK cities) and Dancers in Residence, 2018 (entire school performance programme with William Patten Primary School).
New Adventures and The Marlowe are passionate about diversifying the dance landscape and removing barriers for those who typically struggle to access opportunities in the arts, from limited training opportunities at a young age to prohibitive associated costs. Given the detrimental impact the pandemic is having on opportunities to progress within the arts, they are more committed than ever to inspiring and providing clear pathways for young people to grow and succeed, regardless of background or their circumstances.
Matthew Bourne said: “This past year has highlighted an ever more urgent need to address the lack of accessible opportunities to enter the arts. New Adventures is passionate about diversifying the industry and celebrating talent from across a broad spectrum of backgrounds.
“The launch of Cygnet School is an important cornerstone in our commitment to increasing diverse representation within the arts. We are sincerely grateful to The Dorfman Foundation for their support and encouragement of this pioneering programme, and to The Marlowe Theatre for welcoming Cygnet School to their building.”
Deborah Shaw, Chief Executive of The Marlowe Theatre added: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with New Adventures on this project and we are very much looking forward to welcoming the first Cygnet School cohort to our theatre in July. We are passionate about levelling up access to the performing arts and the impact of the pandemic over the last year has made this more important than ever.”
New Adventures is an Associate company at The Marlowe and this new three-year programme will see both organisations build on previous collaborations which have included; the Romeo and Juliet local cast (2019), Cinderella Curtain Raiser (2018) and Lord of the Flies (2014).

YOUR NEWS – Keeping Summer Alive

YOUR NEWS – Keeping Summer Alive


As amateur theatremakers we have to live with the burden of being tagged ‘hobbyists’, no matter how committed of ‘professional’ our approach to the arts might be.
But, if this really is the sum of all fears, perhaps this would be an appropriate moment to spare a thought for the myriad of professionals out there. The freelancers. Many of whom have had little or no financial support from the government or arts organisations since every theatre in the country closed their doors.
If the professionals have had a bad time of it during the pandemic, imagine what it must have been like if you were slap bang in the middle of an expensive drama course when Covid hit!? That’s exactly what drama and musical students have experienced. I mean. how does one graduate for a career that doesn’t exist?
Thankfully, there now appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel and theatre schools are (slowly) coming back to the thought that face-to-face teaching is essential for the country’s future generation of actors.
One school crossing it’s fingers for a return to some kind of normality this summer is the acclaimed Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, one of the UK’s leading establishments.
BOVTS is taking the bull by the horns and committing to a quartet of summer school courses in 2021. Here are the details to whet your appetites.

YOUR NEWS – New School Final Patron

YOUR NEWS – New School Final Patron


In our previous issue we announced how Strictly winner, Joanne Clifton, had been announced as patron of JGH Academy of Theatre Arts.
Well, now the new school in Canterbury, Kent, has doubled its patron count with the announcement that Olivier Award-winner, Jenna Russell, has been announced as its second and final patron.
JGH Academy was founded by theatre producer, Joseph Hodges, and casting director, Jay Gardner, in January 2021 to bring an intensive full-time training academy to the south east, from September 2021, specialising in outstanding musical theatre training.
Pooling together their many years of performing arts experience from across the globe and unique set of contacts and relationships within the professional musical theatre industry, they will offer two courses (a two-year Sixth Form and a one-year ‘Intensive’) that allows students to gain the knowledge, training and skills to audition for further performing arts training or, alternatively, prepare for a career in the arts.
Jenna Russell is an actress and singer with an inspirational career in both the West End and on Broadway in shows such as Sunday in the Park with George, High Society, Follies, Guys and Dolls, The Bakers Wife, Fun Home, Merry We Roll Along, and Urinetown.
She’s also had a strong television career with notable roles including Christine in Home to Roost, Maggie Lomax in On the Up and, recently, Michelle Fowler in the BBC’s big soap, EastEnders.
Each year, one lucky Sixth Form student will be awarded the ‘Jenna Russell Scholarship’ for both years of their training with JGH, with Jenna joining the school from time to time, in the form of workshops, to share her knowledge, experience and skills with students.
Both courses offered by JGH are geared towards performance and technical skills, as well as audition technique, with training in:
‘Singing’, ‘Musicianship’, ‘Voice’, ‘Acting’, ‘Ballet’, ‘Acrobatics’, ‘Jazz’, ‘Tap’, ‘Contemporary’, ‘Commercial’.

Applications are now open for their September 2021 intake, for anyone aged 16-plus, with a view to obtaining a career in the performing arts.
The application and audition process is completely free of charge and can be accessed online by visiting:

Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @JGHCanterbury


YOUR NEWS – Smile Please!

YOUR NEWS – Smile Please!


The 2021 bursery scheme from the Association of Professional Headshot Photographers supports emerging talent from drama schools across the country.
Entering its 5th year The APHP Headshot Bursary is a major, annual, charitable initiative run by non-profit organisation, which is now open for 2021’s nominations.
The scheme donates a headshot session with an APHP-qualified photographer to a student at each of over twenty major UK drama schools, with each student being nominated by their school.
APHP photographers work with hundreds of UK drama students each year, and the scheme allows the APHP to contribute to the success of emerging actors across the UK at a vital stage of their training.
The following students were the recipients of the 2020 bursary. The first nine have now completed their socially distanced Covid-19 compliant studio shoots and their photographers are noted in brackets. The rest will be completed after restrictions are lifted.

Top Row (l-r):

  • 1. Annabel Bennet (Robin Savage), Fourth Monkey
  • 2. Ameer Aqeel (Robin Savage), Royal Birmingham Conservatoire
  • 3. Maya Elliott (Nicholas Dawkes), ArtsEd

Middle Row:

  • 4. Joshua Robinson (John Clark), Rose Bruford
  • 5. Finn Graham (Alishia Love), The Oxford School of Drama
  • 6. Ida Kummervold (Adam Hills), London Studio Centre

Lower Row:

  • 7. Charlotte Ayers (Tom Barker), The Academy of Live & Recorded Arts
  • 8. Erwan Hughes (Kim Hardy), Royal Central School of Speech and Drama
  • 9. Rachel Ellen (Michael Wharley), Royal Central School of Speech and Drama


  • Conor McLeod, Guildhall School of Music and Drama
  • Lena Robin, Drama Studio London
  • Marco Voli, London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
  • Tia Jackson Owens, London College of Music
  • Jessica Elsie Dunn, Drama Centre London

Financial need: although this is not a hardship bursary, the question is asked that students in need are given first consideration.
Performance excellence: exemplary displays of acting ability during the year.
High academic achievement: superb performance in the written and reflective aspects of training.
Awards are announced throughout the year, according to each school’s timetable, and are published in full on the APHP website by the end of December 2021.

YOUR NEWS – LAMDA Degree Decree

YOUR NEWS – LAMDA Degree Decree

Photo: LAMDA

By Francesca Hoare

LAMDA (London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art), one of the country’s most prestigious drama schools, has announced that it has been granted full Degree Awarding Powers.
Since its inception LAMDA has been recognised as a pioneer in its field and is now regarded as one of the world’s leading conservatoires, providing exceptional training to actors, directors and technicians.
Graduates of LAMDA have gone on to have enduring and successful careers in the creative industries and beyond, with alumni including Benedict Cumberbatch, Ruth Wilson and David Oyelowo.
Degree awarding powers recognises the quality of LAMDA’s training and will build on the drama school’s history and reputation.
In order to be granted full degree awarding powers, a provider must demonstrate that it is a self-critical, cohesive academic community with a proven commitment to the assurance of standards supported by effective quality systems. All the underpinning criteria must also be fully met, so the QAA scrutiny covered academic governance; regulatory frameworks; academic standards; the quality of the academic experience; staff scholarship and pedagogical effectiveness; the environment for supporting students and an evaluation of performance.
LAMDA currently offers these accredited degree level courses:

  • BA (Hons) Professional Acting
  • MFA Professional Acting
  • MA Classical Acting for the Professional Theatre
  • FdA Production and Technical Arts
  • BA (Hons) Production and Technical Arts
  • MA Directing