Monday, October 01, 2012

The Gatekeepers

I've rather controversially, and perhaps a little unwisely, agreed to chair a debate between a panel of 'gatekeepers' (ie. literary managers) in a few weeks' time. The general angle seems to be whether new writing has gone all shit or not, and if it has, whose fault it is.

I hope I don't accidentally commit career suicide live on stage by pissing any of them off. But if I do, you can be there to watch if you like. It should be worth the entry fee. And if it does all go tits up, it would be nice to have some friendly faces there to pick up the pieces...

The Gatekeepers: Theatre

A Spread the Word Panel debate with Q&A.

Free Word Centre | 60 Farringdon Road | London EC1R 3GA | Saturday 8 December | 6pm – 8pm (followed by networking and a complementary drink till 9pm)| £20/£12 (concessions)

“Ours is not a literary profession. It’s a dramatic profession.” (Simon Stephens on the Royal Court’s Young Writer’s Festival tips.)

Wright’ is an archaic English term for a craftsman (as in shipwright or cartwright). A playwright is someone who has wrought words into a dramatic form; she/he is someone who crafts a play. Most unsolicited plays sent to new writing theatres arrive at the Literary Department – and the first hurdle is the theatre’s script readers. Other routes into production exist, yet putting on your own work or seeking ventures outside of London’s various bastions of drama is no mean feat.

Does ‘new writing’ mean today what it did in its heyday of the mid-90s? Have theatres lost the ability to experiment and take risks? Can theatre ever be writer-led? These and other questions will be put to a panel of key figures from within the London new writing scene. The evening opens with a plenary speech from Amanda Whittington of The Writers Guild, and a panel debate will be followed by questions from the audience. After the event join us for a festive drink and mingle.

Panel: playwright Fin Kennedy (Chair), Christopher Campbell (Literary Manager, Royal Court), Sarah Dickenson (Senior Reader, Soho), Nadia Latif (Freelance Theatre Director), Karis Halsall (Literary Assistant, Bush) and Will Mortimer (Literary Manager, Hampstead). With an opening plenary from Amanda Whittington (Playwright and Chair of Theatre Committee, Writers Guild of Great Britain).

For more information and to book please visit: or call 020 8692 0231 (ext 249)