Introduction to Playwriting Introduction to Playwriting short course


Introduction to Playwriting

Key Information
  • Times

    0930 – 1630

  • Price


  • Dates

    The course runs from Monday 11th September to Wednesday 13th September.

  • Location

    Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, 1-2 Downside Rd, Bristol, BS8 2XF

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This course is a fast-paced introduction to the craft of writing plays and suitable for those with an existing interest in theatre and writing for live performance. You may have had a go at writing a play already, or just be looking for the confidence to put pen to paper in a supportive environment. If you want to write lots, share ideas, learn in a group setting and hear from professionals and actors in training on the craft of writing for theatre, this course will be a perfect fit.

Course Structure

Our first day will be a grounding in the fundamentals of playwriting: dramatic action, character, dialogue, location and structure. We’ll also delve into personal experience and memory, alongside looking at the world around you to find subject matter to spark an exciting new idea for a play.


We’ll develop your ideas as a group via workshop exercises and discussion, and think about the scope of your premise. You might be writing a short play, or exploring the beginning of something much bigger. We’ll write quickly, share writing together, and build one another’s confidence for an overnight polish of a five-minute excerpt from your new idea.

In the morning you’ll watch a piece of theatre together (a recording of a live show) and then hear about the professional development process that led to its making, giving you an insight on the collaborative nature of creating a new production. In the afternoon we’ll welcome BOVTS actors to bring your work to life in a round-table reading – an invaluable opportunity to hear your work in the mouths of performers.

A notebook, a pen or a laptop – whatever you would like to write on.


We advise you to bring food and drink with you each day. Otherwise shops can be found nearby on Whiteladies Road.

Headshot of Head of Performance Design
Working relationships made at BOVTS often extend beyond the course, design commission rates are excellent, it’s fantastic to see the graduates embracing successful and rewarding careers as Performance Designers in a professional environment. Angela Davies, Head of Performance Design