New commissioning opportunity for BAMER playwright- Arcola Theatre

Arcola Theatre is partnering with The Orseis Trust to commission a talented and committed playwright from a traditionally underrepresented background (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic or Refugee) to develop an original work for Arcola’s main stage.

They say;

‘While great progress has been made in the last decade, BAMER writers continue to face significant inequality of opportunity in their progression to larger platforms and main stages; especially in getting subsequent plays commissioned and produced, even after a successful debut. Working together, Arcola and The Orseis Trust hope to play a significant part in helping to usher in a new generation of exciting writers.’


The Orseis Trust / Arcola Theatre Co-Commission is looking to identify and develop one BAMER writer who:

  • is over the age of 18, and has been based in the UK for at least TWO years;
  • has had at least ONE, but no more than THREE professional stage productions in the UK;
  • has NOT previously received a PAID full-length play commission. The only exception to this is if the paid full-length commission has not been produced, and the option on the commission has now expired. This is to not disadvantage those who have received a commission previously but have not seen this play produced on stage.

For the purposes of this commission, a professional production is defined as a run of over two weeks, for a full-length play with a paid cast and creative team.


Commission and support

One writer will be selected and commissioned to write a new stage play for the main house in Arcola Theatre’s 2018/19 Season. This will be paid at the agreed UK Theatre / Writers Guild rates for Arcola Theatre Studio 1 productions.

The work may be an original idea, but adaptations will also be considered if the writer can demonstrate that:

  • the rights are obtainable (if relevant);
  • the material is particularly suited for the stage;
  • the writer can provide a new perspective on the source material.

Following the commission, the writer will have access to the resources and expertise in Arcola’s existing new writing programmes (including R&D space, dramaturgy and readings), and one-to-one mentorship by Arcola’s Artistic Director Mehmet Ergen to support the development of the play.

While Arcola Theatre cannot guarantee that any play commissioned will be produced, the track record of producing plays commissioned and developed at Arcola is exceptional.


Deadline: Applications close at 5pm on Tuesday 19th September 2017


How to apply

To apply, please complete this simple application form. and send the following supporting documents to

  • A writing CV, or one page statement that lists any training and development programmes or opportunities you have taken part in, and a production history (including production dates, venue, director and play);
  • A one-page idea or pitch for a new play;
  • A 20-30 page extract of a previously produced play

Any questions or queries, please contact Arcola’s Creative Engagement Manager Nick Connaughton – / 0207 503 1645

Published on:
8 Sep 2017


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