Write to Play year 4

The fourth year of our Write to Play programme has recently launched in The Midlands, with partners Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Belgrade Theatre Coventry and Curve Leicester.


Headshot of Jessica LovettJessica Lovett
“I applied for Write to Play at the very last minute, after debating it for several weeks. I didn’t think there was a chance I’d get selected, but my wish to be chosen outweighed my worry and I applied (and I’m glad I did!). Write to Play is an amazing opportunity. You get to work with industry experts, exciting theatres, and have one to one mentoring throughout the year. The opportunity to work on one piece of writing is great enough, let alone two short pieces and one longer piece that are all showcased throughout the programme. A busy but exciting year ahead, I can’t wait to get started.”


Headshot of Michael SouthanMichael Southan
“Quite simply, I love theatre. It’s such a blank canvas, the possibilities are literally endless. I was drawn to Graeae’s Write to Play programme because of the mentoring system. The type of writer I am, I need that structured time with deadlines. I see writing as a bit of jigsaw puzzle in that I have all of these pieces that I might need to chop and change through feedback and working with my peers to improve my craft. I love collaborating with people and Graeae’s history of this was a big reason for me applying to the programme.”


Headshot Hannah Torrance Hannah Torrance
How can you break the rules if you don’t know what the rules are to begin with? Write to Play sounded perfect for me because it’s a mix of taught sessions, mentoring and writing challenges. I see the world up close, in minute detail, and through the programme I hope to find a way to pull back and take in the overall picture as well as increase my confidence and get my ideas onto the page and into the real world.”


Naomi WestermanHeadshot Naomi Westerman
“I was an actress for more than a decade, during which time I kept my disability (I have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome) a secret. I started playwriting three years ago, and have since had three full-length and multiple short plays produced. Playwriting has given me a voice to talk about what I consider crucial socio-political issues and allowed me to give other marginalised people a voice. I applied to Write to Play because I wanted to explore ways of making theatre with and about people with disabilities, and I hope to build relationships with other theatre makers and potential collaborative partners.”


Khush ChahalHeadshot Khush Chahal
“I applied to Write to Play because I saw it as an amazing opportunity for me as a writer to develop my work through mentoring and workshops as well as having my pieces performed. I can’t think of any other company that does this. I am looking forward to engaging with the full aspects of the writing course and hope by the end of it I will have gained new insights into the writing process.”


Karran CollingsHeadshot Karan Collings
“I studied Creative & Professional Writing and Drama & Performance at Wolverhampton University from 2006-10.  However, I couldn’t find the next step until I stumbled across the Write to Play programme. Life-changing opportunities like this don’t happen very often; a chance to write for theatre, work with professional practitioners, and receive one-to-one mentoring, workshops and placements!  Each aspect of it feels like a promise of revelations, excitement and drama. This programme will take me to a completely new exciting level and give me unparalleled real theatre experience. At the end of Write to Play I’m aiming to be a working playwright.”


‘We’re thrilled to join Graeae’s trailblazing Write To Play programme in its fourth year, giving D/deaf and disabled playwrights in our city and region the opportunity to develop their voices, make new work with our support, and get to know us better. Being a home for our community’s diverse audiences and artists is at the heart of everything we do at Curve, and it’s an honour to form this new partnership with Graeae, a company that boldly, brilliantly pushes for greater accessibility in the arts. Joining forces with our friends at Birmingham Repertory Theatre and Belgrade Theatre Coventry, it’s a real Midlands powerhouse of venues on the programme and I can’t wait to see what stories we all discover.’
Suba Das, Associate Director, Curve Leicester

‘We are delighted to partner with Graeae, The Belgrade and The Curve on this most exciting and ambitious of projects. To be a part of this programme on a region wide scale, to discover, nurture and support a new generation of D/deaf and disabled writers and to diversify the pool of fantastic storytellers in the Midlands is a great honour. I really look forward to seeing how these writers, ideas and plays develop and grow with the support and focus that the mentoring, workshops and sharings of work that this scheme offers.’ Tessa Walker, Associate Director, Birmingham Repertory Theatre

‘The Belgrade is delighted to be working in partnership with Graeae on the fourth year of its Write to Play Programme. The Belgrade Theatre is committed to telling the stories of the diverse range of communities that make up the city, the region and the country; and to developing artists from this broad range of contexts – so it is great to be involved in a project that is contributing to redressing the balance in terms of the development of skills / stories from D/deaf and disabled artists. We are also pleased to be working again with regional partners, Birmingham Repertory Theatre and Leicester Curve.’
Justine Themen, Associate Director, Belgrade Theatre Coventry

Write to Play year 4 is funded with support from The Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, The Backstage Trust and The Big Lottery Fund. 

Ola Animashawun
Chris O’Connell
Emteaz Hussain
Jane Fallowfield
Tom Wells
Laura Lomas

Vivienne Franzmann
Ola Animashawun

Masterclass facilitators:
Chris Thorpe
Gez Casey
James Grieve
Selma Dimitrijevic
Steve Camden aka Polarbear

  • Introducing our year five Write to Play writers!

      For the first time since Write to Play launched, year 5 will specifically focus on nurturing D/deaf and disabled writers within the BAME community. Graeae will be working alongside Bush Theatre, Soho Theatre, Ovalhouse, Talawa and Tamasha. Get to know our writers as we ask them a few questions about the year ahead and what their […]

  • Introducing our year four Write to Play writers!

    Write to Play has landed in the Midlands for its fourth year, where Graeae and our brilliant partner organisations are about to start working with six brilliant new writers. To get to know them a little better, and to get us all in the festive spirit, we asked them three questions.