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Like New York and other international cultural hubs, London is replete with theatres that support, curate and cultivate new writing. Here is our guide to some of the best.
Alight in Dalston and trot over the road to one of London’s most exciting off-West-End theatres, the Arcola Theatre. The Arcola runs a scheme for burgeoning playwrights called PlayWROUGHT, open to applicants of all ages and experience, offering new talent a creative platform. Successful applicants get the opportunity to receive feedback on their piece and to work closely with an established playwright or dramaturge to develop their play further, culminating in a rehearsed reading. Amongst the diverse productions staged at the Arcola are a range of UK and London premieres such as Clarion by Mark Jagasia, showing in April and May 2015. The Story Project, ten new stories created by new writers, is on at Arcola until January 10th.
A stalwart of the London new playwriting scene, the Royal Court Theatre, located on Sloane Square, London, is a paragon of support for new talent. Famous for its controversial inaugural play, Look Back in Anger by John Osborne staged in 1956, the Royal Court has always styled itself as the ‘writer’s theatre.’ Today the theatre still adheres to this founding raison d’etre; its in-house literary office reads and considers over 3,500 scripts annually. The studio at the Royal Court Theatre was established as a place where new writing talent could be discovered, cultivated and hoisted into life. One of the programmes run is called Rough Cuts, a biannual workshop and showcase of works-in-progress, a chance for playwrights to see their words transformed into live stagecraft. One notable play that has emerged from this program is Laura Wade’s Posh, recently converted into feature film The Riot Club.