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503Studio – Spring 23: Write Your First Full Length Play

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503Studio: Write Your First Full Length Play

Eight Wednesday sessions starting from Wednesday 26 April, 7 – 9.30pm. The sessions will take place over Zoom.

Theatre503 introduces its flagship writing course, to support you to write your first full length play led by Literary Manager, Steve Harper.

Our course will provide a structured exploration at pivotal stages of the process and incorporate discussion, exercises and shared experience around particular points in the process and directly in response to the work you are creating throughout.

Acknowledging that not one given process works for all writers, we will aim to explore as many alternative processes as possible. Writers will be encouraged to explore and share their own experiences of what has been useful and what has got in the way, with the course providing a space within which to reflect on these and guidance to how we might best draw on these experiences to inform our writing processes going forward.

We will provide ongoing dramaturgical support throughout the process, but with an awareness to the fact that all writers processes are bespoke. In this sense, whilst structured, we will also have the flexibility to provide different levels of dramaturgical support to individual writers at different stages of the process.

Wednesday 26 April 23 – Session 1 – Ideas

Wednesday 17 May 23 – Session 2 – Mapping Your Play

Wednesday 31 May 23 – Session 3 – Character & Character Journeys

Wednesday 14 June 23 – Session 4 – Scenes

Wednesday 28 June 23 – Session 5 – Dialogue/Subtext

Wednesday 5 July 23 – Session 6 – Setting/Space

Wednesday 12 July 23 – Session 7 – Structure


Wednesday 6 Sept 23 – Session 8 – Tutorials/Feedback

Please note we cannot commit to an ongoing dramaturgical relationship with any pieces that may develop on this course, or commit to a production. However we will offer an open and honest discussion with all participants about possible next steps for their work, recommendations of other development opportunities that might be of benefit, and guidance to where their work may best be suited in terms of future engagement.

If you have any access requirements, you can let us know here. If you would rather discuss any access requirements and how we can accommodate them prior to booking, please get in touch with us here.

Maximum class sizes are 14.

To sign up for advanced booking for future iterations of the 503Studio: Writers Programme, please join the waiting list here.

It is important to consider that this is not an introduction to playwriting but a course that will provide opportunities to refresh our basic knowledge of the craft in direct relationship to our work and the objective of writing a play over the period of the next 4 months. It is a course aimed at helping those writers trying to move from writing short plays to full length work, or those who might have written some full length work and feel it would be helpful to have a structured and ongoing dramaturgical relationship throughout the process.

Dates/Times: Wednesday 26th April (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 17th May (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 31st May (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 14th June (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 28th June (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 5th July (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 12th July (7-9.30pm), Wednesday 6th Sept (7-9.30pm).

Steve Harper heads the Literary Department of Theatre503. In the 14 years he has worked at the venue he has been responsible for identifying and supporting over 1,000 debut playwrights and helping to start their career. He co-created the 503Five initiative and Theatre503 International Playwriting Award. He has developed an outstanding reputation for matchmaking writers, directors and producers including putting together the team that delivered the Olivier Award winning Rotterdam.


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