Rapid Write Response is a short play initiative to meet and engage with early-career creatives, by mounting seven 10-minute response pieces to our current full length production. Over a 3 week period the plays are written, selected, cast, rehearsed and staged, all co-ordinated by one of our Trainee Assistant Producers and a Curator. For more detailed information on the process and how to get involved as a writer, director or an actor, check out the sections below.
Our short play initiative is open to all early-career writers. Come on down to our writers night (the first preview of every show) and enjoy a £5 ticket and a chance to meet our literary department and the writer of the show. If you’re unable to make our writers night, our £5 writers ticket offer is then available for the second preview. For more information on the dates of the writers nights, head over to the event page for the upcoming show. After watching the show feel free to join us for an online Writers Space later that week as a chance to find out more about the play, and the process of Rapid Write Response. To sign up for this, please fill out our Google Form HERE.
You are then invited to write a 10 minute minute short play in response to the production and submit it via our Script Portal by the following Monday. All submissions will be read by a panel of the 503 Team, and 7 selected writers will get the opportunity to see their work performed live on our stage. All writers must be eligible under our Script and Programming Policy. Whilst this is currently an unpaid opportunity, there are a number of benefits to participating in Rapid Write Response:
– This is a great chance to introduce yourself as a writer to our Literary Department and to have your writing seen by the wider 503 team.
– The process means you will get to meet new creative collaborators in the directors and actors match-made with your piece.
– You also will receive feedback on your script, to help it develop further; several plays which started at Rapid Write Response have gone onto become full plays at various theatres, including Spiderfly which was a part of our Autumn 2019 season!
We’re always on the look out for a wide variety of directors from different backgrounds and levels of experience to take on the challenge of directing a RWR show, and helping the 7 selected writers see their words come alive onstage. If this is something you would like to be involved in, please register your interest HERE.
Directors will be recruited by the curator, who will be there to support the overall process and will allocate you one of the seven scripts. With the support of the 503 team, directors will have between Friday – Sunday to cast their show. Theatre503 will provide each show a total of 3 hours rehearsal time, split into two 1.5 hour slots within our theatre space. On the Sunday, each show will have a 45 minute tech slot and all teams will have the opportunity to watch each other’s performances in the dress rehearsal before the first show. Performances will be on Sunday and Monday evening.
Whilst this is currently an unpaid opportunity, there are a number of benefits to participating in Rapid Write Response:
– A free ticket to see our current full length production.
– Support and feedback on your practice from the Curator and 503 team.
– A chance to meet new creative collaborators in the writers and actors match-made with your piece. There have been many long-lasting and successful creative relationships that have begun from a RWR show, such as Rebekah Murrell and Yasmin Joseph who went on to stage J’Ouvert at 503, then the Harold Pinter Theatre.
– A way to introduce yourself to the 503 team as a director, with a mind to future projects.
We’re always looking out for brilliant actors of all experiences to help bring the words of 7 selected writers to life. If this is something you would like to be involved in, please register your interest HERE. Casting is dependent on the character breakdowns of the various plays, and by signing up, we will keep your details on file for consideration for Rapid Write Response nights across the entire season. We would be looking for a commitment of 3 hours of rehearsal time, a 45 minute tech slot on the Sunday, a dress rehearsal in the afternoon, followed by a performance that evening and Monday evening. We encourage actors to be off book for the performance, wherever possible. Whilst this is currently an unpaid opportunity, there are a number of benefits to participating in Rapid Write Response:
– A chance to work alongside exciting new directors and writers and develop long lasting professional relationships.
– Be seen by the 503 Team with a mind to potential future casting. We’ve gone on to work with lots of actors who we first met through Rapid Write Response.
– Challenge yourself as an actor and perform on our 503 stage in front of a public audience.
We understand that there are currently barriers preventing people being able to participate in our Rapid Write Response initiative.
If RWR is financially inaccessible to you, we are able to make a contribution to travel expenses for those who need it.
If RWR is geographically inaccessible to you, we hope to run another digital Rapid Write Response in the future. You can view our Online RWR: Paper Cut here.
If RWR is physically inaccessible to you, as the venue is currently up several flights of stairs, by 2023 we aim to have 2 physically accessible performance spaces both above the Latchmere pub at our new 503Studio in Nine Elms, through the installation of a lift and the levelling of the floor. We also hope to run another digital RWR detailed above.
To see the full list of what we currently offer at our venue, you can view our accessibility page here.
Previous participants include Andrew Thompson, the winner of our 2016 Playwriting Award (In Event of Moone Disaster), Anna Jordan (Yen, Royal Exchange Manchester, Royal Court & Broadway), Stuart Slade (BU21, Theatre503 & West End), Chris Urch (Land of Our Fathers, Theatre503, West End & 2 national tours) & Vinay Patel (writer of the BAFTA award winning Murdered by My Father)
The critically acclaimed production of Spiderfly by John Webber, first started it’s life as a Rapid Write Response before going on to be developed further into a full length play, programmed in our 2019 Autumn Season.
Yasmin Joseph, previous 503Five member and winner of the 2020 James Tait Black Prize for Drama, met director Rebekah Murrell through a Rapid Write Response. The two of them went on to form a production company, Bad Breed, and staged Yasmin’s play J’Ouvert at Theatre503 in 2019, and then again in 2021 at the Harold Pinter Theatre in the West End.