Cardiff University Seminar: Performance in Place of War

Beacon for Wales Lunchtime Seminar

Performance in Place of War – engaging locally and internationally

Professor James Thompson, Professor of Applied Theatre and Associate Dean for External Relations, University of Manchester

Thursday 8th December, 12.30pm – 1.30pm, Glamorgan Council Chamber, Glamorgan Building, Cardiff University

In Place of War was awarded the THE ‘Excellence and Innovation in the Arts Award’ 2010 and has now been developing and supporting theatre and arts programmes in sites of armed conflict since 2004. It started as a research project funded by the AHRC, and has subsequently developed online resources and publications, organised seminars and conferences, and developed practical arts projects in both the UK and abroad. In the last three years it has developed an artists network that has involved practitioners from DR Congo, Kosovo, Northern Ireland, Sri Lanka and South Sudan. In the summer of 2011 it ran the first ever theatre conference in the eastern DR Congo town of Goma.

James will present the project, giving examples of different arts programmes, the varying activities of the network of artists and how it has sought to engage with both academic and non-academic audiences. One of the principles of In Place of War has been to explore how its work can relate to groups internationally and locally – and James will discuss the relation between Manchester-based activities and work that has been focused overseas. Performances by refugees within the University to family audiences will be compared to programmes for refugees in Sudan and DR Congo. In Place of War hopes to be a positive example of how arts and humanities researchers can develop projects that interact with diverse communities beyond the University.

For further information:

James Thompson is Professor of Applied Theatre and Associate Dean for External Relations at the Faculty of Humanities, University of Manchester. He is director of the In Place of War project – a research and practice-based initiative that works with artists who live and work in war zones. He has published widely in the field of Applied Theatre, including with colleagues ‘Performance In Place of War’ (Seagull/University of Chicago) and ‘Performance Affects’ (Palgrave). His current position involves developing the public engagement, outreach and social responsibility programmes for the University’s Faculty of Humanities.

This seminar is free to attend.

To book your place visit:

And again in Welsh:

Goleufa Cymru Seminar Amser Cinio
Perfformio Yn Lle Rhyfel – ymgysylltu’n lleol a rhyngwladol

Yr Athro James Thompson, Athro Theatr Gymwysedig a Deon Cyswllt Cysylltiadau Allanol, Prifysgol Manceinion

Dydd Iau 8 Rhagfyr, 12.30pm – 1.30pm, Ystafell Gyngor Morgannwg, Adeilad Morgannwg, Prifysgol Caerdydd

Enillodd Yn Lle Rhyfel ‘Wobr Rhagoriaeth ac Arloesi yn y Celfyddydau’ 2010 ac mae bellach wedi bod yn datblygu a chefnogi rhaglenni theatr a chelfyddydau mewn mannau o wrthdaro arfog ers 2004. Dechreuodd fel prosiect ymchwil wedi ei ariannu gan yr AHRC, ac yn dilyn hynny mae wedi datblygu adnoddau ar-lein a chyhoeddiadau, wedi trefnu seminarau a chynadleddau, ac wedi datblygu prosiectau celf ymarferol yn y DU a thramor. Yn y tair blynedd diwethaf mae wedi datblygu rhwydwaith o artistiaid sy’n cynnwys ymarferwyr o’r Congo, Kosovo, Gogledd Iwerddon, Sri Lanka a De Swdan. Yn ystod haf 2011 cynhaliodd y gynhadledd theatr gyntaf erioed yn nhref Goma yng Ngweriniaeth Ddemocrataidd y Congo.

Bydd James yn cyflwyno’r prosiect, gan roi enghreifftiau o raglenni celf gwahanol, gweithgareddau amrywiol y rhwydwaith o artistiaid a sut mae wedi ceisio ymgysylltu â chynulleidfaoedd academaidd ac anacademaidd. Un o egwyddorion Yn Lle Rhyfel oedd archwilio sut gall ei waith gysylltu gyda grwpiau rhyngwladol a lleol – a bydd James yn trafod y berthynas rhwng y gweithgareddau a wneir ym Manceinion a’r gwaith y bu canolbwyntio arno dramor. Caiff perfformiadau gan ffoaduriaid yn y Brifysgol i gynulleidfaoedd teuluol eu cymharu i raglenni i ffoaduriaid yn Swdan a Gweriniaeth Ddemocrataidd y Congo. Mae Yn Lle Rhyfel yn gobeithio bod yn enghraifft gadarnhaol o sut gall ymchwilwyr y celfyddydau a’r dyniaethau ddatblygu prosiectau sy’n rhyngweithio gyda chymunedau amrywiol y tu hwnt i’r Brifysgol.
Am ragor o wybodaeth:

Mae James Thompson yn Athro Theatr Gymwysedig ac yn Ddeon Cyswllt Cysylltiadau Allanol yng Nghyfadran y Dyniaethau, Prifysgol Manceinion. Ef yw cyfarwyddwr prosiect Yn Lle Rhyfel – menter ymchwil ac ymarfer sy’n gweithio gydag artistiaid sy’n byw ac yn gweithio mewn rhanbarthau rhyfel. Mae wedi cyhoeddi’n helaeth ym maes Theatr Gymwysedig, gan gynnwys gyda chydweithwyr ‘Perfformio Yn Lle Rhyfel’ (Seagull/Prifysgol Chicago) ac ‘Affeithiau Perfformio’ (Palgrave). Mae a wnelo ei swydd bresennol â datblygu’r rhaglenni ymgysylltu â’r cyhoedd, allgymorth a chyfrifoldeb cymdeithasol i Gyfadran Dyniaethau’r Brifysgol.

Gellir mynychu’r seminar hon yn rhad ac am ddim.

I archebu’ch lle ewch i

Doctor Who Movie Rumors

Okay, so this is something I find interesting: today I received an e-mail from Variety, to which as someone in “the industry” I subscribe. It announced that David Yates–helmer of some of the Harry Potter films–was teaming up with the BBC to do a Doctor Who movie. NOT one that has anything to do with the current television program, mind you. The movie would be all new, its own thing.

This makes sense in a broad audience appeal kind of way. You don’t necessarily want to launch a movie franchise that requires viewers to slog through a lot of backlog. Look at the X-Files movies. Hell, I watched that series and still didn’t understand those films. Never mind people who went in cold.

Now there’s no script and no cast yet, just some big names behind getting the project off the ground. (By the way, if they want a script, I’d be happy to oblige . . .) Other, previous attempts have not borne fruit, so there’s reason to think the odds of anything happening are 50/50.

But what I really find intriguing is the protest-too-much reaction I’ve witnessed on Twitter. So many people in the DW camp coming out and saying that it’s just a rumor, there’s nothing in it. Really? Because I can usually trust Variety. I won’t say they’re always right, but Yates had some quotes in there that made this project sound very possible. So why the fuss? Do they see this as a rival instead of a boost? Do they only want a DW movie if Moffat and Smith and co. are involved?

The issue of creative control is always a touchy one. And fan loyalty plays into the dynamics as well in terms of planning big projects. Anyone who’s had to adapt a bestselling, much-loved novel knows that. And here is a possible recasting of a cult classic television program, so there’s bound to be some strong feelings involved. Though in the end it’s a legal issue of who has rights to what, whose contracts say what and so on.

I, for one, am curious to see what comes of it, if anything. After all, people had reservations about the television show, too, when it rebooted in 2005. They had doubts when David Tennant was replaced by Matt Smith, too. But it’s all turned out okay so far. Why have so little faith now?

Wait and see is the watchword. (And maybe consider Benny Cumberbatch for the film version of the Doctor. We already know he can rock a scarf.)

My Name in Lights

Not really, but “Warm Bodies” is now officially listed as a semi-finalist at The Valley Repertory Company‘s 3rd Annual LabWorks. Auditions are on December 4th, and it’s very weird to think about actual people acting out what I’ve written. Just so different from screenwriting, which feels a bit more removed. But I’m hugely excited anyway and hope to travel down and see the play in February. I wonder if I’ll be able to stand it? (I can’t stand watching myself on video after a performance; will watching others perform my play be any different?) I guess we’ll see . . .

What I do like about playwriting is that I tell a story and then different directors can do any number of things with it. Like we’re all having the same dream but it looks different to everyone.

Playwriting Opportunity (in English and Welsh)

Launch of DAW’s One Act Playwriting Competition 2012

Monday 17th October 2011. Today, DAW launched its annual Playwriting Competition. The competition aims to encourage the writing of plays for theatre in English and Welsh. Previous prizewinners have been published and performed as a result of promotion through our New Writing Scheme.



An Adjudicating Panel appointed by the Drama Association of Wales will read and consider the plays entered into the Competition and will award the following prizes:

• Best Play for a Youth Cast (16-25 years) – £250
• Best Play in the Open Category – £250
• Best Play in the Welsh Language – £250
• plus commemorative Prizewinners Medals
• The above plays will also be published by DAW Publications

• The Best Play from a Wales Based Playwright will be awarded a bursary to Tŷ Newydd, the National Writers’ Centre for Wales

If you would like to make use of DAW’s Script Reading Service whilst your play is with us, please send £37.50 as the combined price of both competition entry – £17.50 and Script Reading Service – £20.00

For a hard copy of the application form, please contact Teresa on Cardiff +44 (0) 29 2045 2200 or

For a downloadable entry form by pdf or word format, visit our website

Closing date: 31st January 2012


With special thanks this year to Christchurch Theatre Club, Dorset

And in Welsh, for the curious, if not for those who actually read and speak it . . .


Yr wythnos hon, fydd CDdC yn lawnsio’r gystadleuaeth ysgrifennu drama un act 2012. Bwriad y gystadleuaeth yw annog ysgrifennu dramau ar gyfer theatr yn y Gymraeg ar Saesneg. Yn ogystal a gwobr ariannol byddem yn ystyried cyhoeddi rai o’r dramau buddugol. Yn y gorffennol maer dramau buddugol wedi cael ei cyhoeddi a’i perfformio o ganlyniad i gynllun hyrwyddo ysgrifennu newydd CDdC.



Penodir panel o feirniaid gan Gymdeithas Ddrama Cymru i ddarllen, dadansoddi dramau ar gyfer dewis ennillwyr yr gwborwyon canlynol:

• Drama orau ar gyfer cast ieuenctid (15-25mlwydd oed) – £250
• Drama orau yn yr gystadleuaeth Agored – £250
• Drama cyfrwng Gymraeg orau – £250
• Medalau i’r ennillwyr cofiannol.
• Bydd CDdC y ystyried gyhoeddi’r dramau uchod

Yn ogystal:
• Mi fydd yr ddrama orau gan ddramodydd o Gymru yn ennill bwrsariaeth i Ty Newydd, Canolfan Ysgrifennu Cenedlaethol Cymru.


Os hoffech wneud defnydd o wasanaeth darllen sgriptiau Cymdeithas Ddrama Cymru tra bod eich drama gyda ni y pris gyfunedig yw £37.50 sef £17.50 i gystadlu yn y gystadleuaeth ysgrifennu a £20.00 am ein gwasanaeth darllen sgript.

Am ffurflen gais ar gyfer y gystadleuaeth, cysylltwch â Teresa, Swyddfa Cymdeithas Ddrama Cymru (CDdC) drwy ffonio +44 (0) 29 2045 2200 neu ebost: neu am ffurflen gais pdf neu word

Dyddiad cau: 31ain o fis Ionawr, 2012


Diolch yn fawr iawn i Christchurch Theatre Club, Dorset

Another Writing/Continuing Ed Opportunity

Scriptwriting course in New Theatre

There will be a new ten week course leading to a ten page short and showcase at Bridgend College Sony Theatre.

The course will look at story structure, format, finding your voice and getting your work on.

The course begins Tuesday the 4th of October 5.30 – 7.30.

There are opportunities to do it on line or through drop in to allow for work hours. Each session is not compulsory and students can drop in on sessions they would like to attend.

Cost: Waivered for Unemployed etc. £115 to full time employment.

Enquiries to Carmen at

Opportunity for Writers

I was asked to pass this on to anyone who might be interested . . . Alas, it’s for UK residents only, but I’m doing my part here.

Creative Diversity Network
in partnership with BBC Writersroom

TV Drama Writer Lab

There is a prevailing problem in the industry when it comes to finding, keeping and protecting Black and Minority Ethnic writers for TV drama. TV Drama Writer Lab is a targeted development scheme, working across the industry and broadcasters, bringing together a group of up to 10 of the most talented writers with a real commitment to TV drama. This unique opportunity has come about at short notice – but this is just the beginning of an ongoing journey for a group of talented voices.

Selected writers will take part in a three/four day residential in Kent, between 7-10 November, where they can develop their ideas, craft and knowledge, and network with other writers and producers across the TV drama industry. This is a scheme for talented writers on the cusp of a career in television, and as such applicants will need to have some form of professional experience under their belt – eg a full commission, production or professional showcase in theatre, radio, film or TV.

Writers must submit an original calling card script (written for any medium – TV, film, stage, radio), a TV drama idea they would like to develop (at least one paragraph, and up to one page), and a biog or brief CV of previous experience. Writers will be selected on the basis of the ability shown in their script and the potential for TV shown in their idea.

Email submissions with the subject header ‘CDN TV Writer Drama Lab’ to:
Deadline for submissions: 9am, Monday 3rd October
Selected writers informed: by 5pm, Friday 7 th October
Residential: 7-10 November (3 or 4 days to be confirmed)
Please note: the residential will be all expenses paid, however there will not be an attendance fee available to writers.


What will I get out of this as a writer? The opportunity to: get your work noticed by the BBC and other producers in the industry; to develop a TV idea further in a safe, creative environment; to develop TV craft and skills through workshops and discussions; to network with other writers and producers, and develop relationships with both; to hear direct from the industry about how things really work in practise; to ask burning questions and get honest answers.
What does BME mean? It means Black and Minority Ethnic; or non-caucasian.

Why is this only for BME writers? Because there is a very specific problem and editorial need in the TV industry, where BME writers are not adequately represented in programming and output

I’m disabled but not BME – what about me? Writersroom has previously run schemes and partnerships for writers with disabilities and intend to do so again in the near future under the BBC’s tenure of CDN. And any UK-based writers with disabilities can send us an eligible script at any time:

I am BME but not living in the UK? Then unfortunately you are not eligible to apply.

Is there a commission/job at the end of this? Not directly, no – but we hope it may be the first step towards that for selected writers.

What do you mean by ‘professional experience’? We mean that you have been engaged and paid to write a script by a professional company/organisation (as opposed to amateur, self-funded or student work).

What do you mean by a calling card script? It must be all your own work and entirely original. It should not be an episode from an existing show or series, even if professionally commissioned/produced. It should be a full script – either an entire single drama, or the pilot episode from a series or serial.

Can I send a sitcom/sketch show/sketches? No – we want to see drama. But comedy-drama does count.

What do you mean by TV drama idea? An original proposal for a new TV drama, whether a single drama, a series or a serial. It should be at least one paragraph and up to one side of A4 maximum, outlining the title, world, idea/premise, format, genre/tone, story and characters. We don’t need lots of plot detail – we need to know what the show is really about and what it will feel like for an audience watching.

What do you mean by biog/CV? We need to know about any writing experience you have – but also do tell us anything else about yourself that you think we might be interested to know. Please send no more than one side of A4 if it’s a CV; if it’s a prose biography, please write no more than half a side of A4.

How will the residential work? We will arrange and pay for the travel, accommodation and food for all writers attending. Writers will stay overnight (2 or 3 nights – to be confirmed) at Bore Place in Kent, where there will be a BBC member of staff at all times. During the day, there will be a series of sessions, workshops, brainstorms, one-on-ones, Q&As and individual writing time.

Why is there no attendance fee? We are able to facilitate the residential but are unfortunately unable to provide a fee for writers.

Why is this at short notice? The opportunity came up at short notice to repurpose a pre-existing residential booking, and we decided that the BBC’s tenure of CDN and the general editorial need for BME writers meant that this was the first choice project to undertake.