Coming up


Sun 13 Oct

A one day symposium for aspiring and professional playwrights and those supporting them in the East of England. Speakers include John Whiting award winner and author of In Battalions Fin Kennedy and Steve Waters, acclaimed playwright and author of The Secret Life of Plays.

During the day we will address the question ‘What do Playwright’s Need?’ Fin Kennedy will open with a provocation based on the findings from his In Battalions report into the effect of Arts Council cuts on theatres’ capacity to develop new plays and playwrights; Steve Waters will give a concluding speech drawing out the themes that have emerged from the day; Nick Herne will be there with a book stall; Rebecca Prichard will deliver a provocation on ‘the gender agenda’ in playwriting and there will be some readings from ‘My First Play’, an anthology of theatrical beginnings recently published by Nick Herne Books. The day will be full of opportunities to network, chat and play and will include readings from this year’s Escalator playwrights who are currently being mentored by HighTide.

Price includes buffet lunch, admission to readings and to 6pm performance at the Lakeside Theatre of Elizabeth Kuti’s critically acclaimed new play, Fishskin Trousers. (“…entrancing viewing” **** Lyn Gardner, The Guardian / “…a fascinating and lyrical piece of writing” **** Critic’s Choice. Patrick Marmion, Time Out)

How to claim your free ticket to Fishskin Trousers

1- Add your ticket(s) for What Do Playwrights Need to the basket.

2 – Search for Fishskin Trousers in the What’s On listings.

3- Add your ticket(s) for Fishskin Trousers to the basket.

4 – The offer will automatically appear. Confirm, pay and turn up on the day!

Please note, the total price discounted for your Fishskin Trousers ticket(s) will be deducted equally from both events. This is a box office system requirement, you’ll still pay the correct reduced total price.



 Sunday 13 October 2013


When? Where? What?
10:30 – 11:00 Foyer / café bar Registration / coffee
11:00 – 11:05 Auditorium Introduction from Barbara Peirson
11:05 – 11:15 Auditorium Speed dating for playwrights, introduced by Barbara
11:15 – 11:45 Auditorium Provocation by Fin Kennedy, based on ‘In Battalions’
11:45 – 11:55 Auditorium Barbara Peirson to set up breakout groups and brief them on 2 questions to explore during next session
11:55 – 12:00 Move to breakout spaces
12:00 – 12:40 Breakout spaces Discuss the two breakout topics, giving each one 20 minutes
12:40 – 12:45 Move back into auditorium Red = auditorium stageYellow = auditorium seating

Green = Studio Theatre

Blue = Foyer

Orange = Foyer

12:45 – 13:15 Auditorium Spokesperson from each breakout group to relate group’s findings on each topic.  Note taker to flag up findings on flipchart or screen.
13:15 – 14:00 Foyer / café bar Lunch + book stall from Nick Hern Books
14:00 – 14:30 Auditorium Provocation by Rebecca Prichard: The Gender Agenda
14:30 – 16:00 Auditorium Readings: 

Elizabeth Kuti reads from ‘My First Play’


Tom Clancy to talk about what got him started in playwriting and explain about HighTide’s Escalator Plays


Actors will read an excerpt from Tom’s Wendy House


Catriona Kerridge to explain what got her started in playwriting


Actors will read an excerpt from Catriona’s Fast Track


Danae Brook to explain what got her started in playwriting


Actors will read an excerpt from Danae’s Brief Lies


Jonathan Lichtenstein to read from ‘My First Play’


Vinay Patel to explain what got him started in playwriting


Shane Shambhu to read an excerpt from Vinay’s True Brits


Nicola Werenowska to explain what got her into playwriting


Actors to read an extract from Nicola’s Hidden


Joe Wilde to explain what got him into playwriting


Actors to read an excerpt from Joe’s Last of the Pigs


Kenny Emson to explain what got him into playwriting


Actors to read an excerpt from Kenny’s Capital

16:00 – 16:15 Foyer / café bar Tea break
16:15 – 16:30 Auditorium Summary and overview about playwriting today by Steve Waters.
16:30 – 16:50 Auditorium Steve Waters to invite contributing writers to today’s symposium to join him on stage and then facilitate an audience  Q&A session
16:50 – 17:00 Auditorium Barbara Peirson – concluding remarks, thank yous and reminder about Fishskin Trousers performance at 18:00






  • Sun 13 Oct
  • 10:30am - 5:00pm (Fishskin Trousers begins 6pm)
  • 20 Full / £10 Semi Conc / £5 Full Conc
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