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The Week Ahead

Peter Saracen is performing in Urban Fright for Offbook, bringing pages of novels on to the stage at Waterstones, Piccadilly on the 27th October 7.30-9pm.

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The Around Readers present a matinee performance of short plays by writers from the Society of Women Writer & Journalists and AWL at the CAA on 25th October. The readings are directed by Martin Cort. AWLies taking part include Dorothea Phillips, Mary Drake, Anne Rutter, Sophie Morris-Sheppard, Terry Perkins, Eleanor Caird Rhodes & Paul Antony-Barber.

2.30 pm on Wednesday 25th October

Entry is by programme £5. Call Martin on 020 7582 5839 if you wish to reserve a programme.

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Charlie Dupré’s Macblair is back, after successful runs at the Brighton and Edinburgh Festivals. Catch it if you can, at King’s Head Theatre from 23rd - 28th October at 9.30 pm.

1994. Returning from a successful parliamentary meeting, Macblair and Macbrown meet three weird hacks on a stairwell in the House of Commons. They prophesy that Macblair will become leader of the Labour Party, then Prime Minister, and eventually... King of the World. This is the story of Tony Blair as a Shakespearean tragicomedy.

£15 (£12 concs)

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Alice De-Warrenne is touring the United Arab Emirates with Lollipop Theatre’s productions of Jack and the Giant and Santa’s Invitation. The shows are running from 24th October to 17th December.

Following the tragic death of Alexander Jonas’s brother Cris, in September, aged just 37, a Kickstarter project has been raised to honour his memory.

Cris Jones was a highly rated Australian film director. His film, The Death and Life of Otto Bloom, in which Alex appeared as a BBC journalist, was presented as the closing night feature film of the OZ Film Festival at Regent Street Cinema earlier this year. The Kickstarter campaign, organised by Oz Film Festival, aims to install an exclusive director’s chair at Regent Street Cinema as a lasting memorial to Cris.

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Melanie Hughes’s novel, War Changes Everything, was published by Patrician Press on 30th September, with help from the amazing Nadia Ostacchini and much support and encouragement from friends at AWL.

This is Nita’s Story. Born during the First World War, she is illegitimate. When her mother marries, she doesn’t get on with her stepfather. At grammar school she meets Yolanda who introduces her to the vibrant Italian community. The two young women become involved in the left-wing intellectual life of London in the 1930s. She meets Rikh, an activist in the India League. When war is declared, Rikh is seconded to bomber command and they marry in haste. While Rikh is away, she meets Lal, an Indian prince, and they have a whirlwind love affair. As the war engulfs the world, Rikh is posted back to India and Nita goes with him even though their marriage is unhappy.

Nita’s story continues in Melanie’s second novel, Midnight Legacy, which is to be published on 1st November.

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Tony Parkin plays Dr Rodrigo de Lopez in Julian JonesDocumentary with Narrative series Queen Elizabeth’s Secret Agents. Three episodes to be shown on BBC2: Mondays at 9pm: 23rd & 30th October; 6th November.

Brian Abbott is the writer for the Parrabbola website,, a monthly series of audio dramas which look at historical events of all kinds, big and small, public and personal, from the eyes and in the imagined words of those who were there, or who might have been there.

In a new departure, the latest iwitness audio drama is actually five short, interlinked dramas. This is a collaboration between Parrabbola and the My Bluecoat Project, celebrating the 300th Anniversary of The Bluecoat Building and Centre of the Arts in Liverpool: the oldest building in Liverpool and the first centre for all the Arts in the UK. The audio will also be available as an app to all visitors and audiences attending he Bluecoat during the Tercentenary year.

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Rosalind Adler’s short story Summer’s Lease has been published as part of an anthology - With Our Eyes Open - by curtisbaussebooks, with the print version available on 15 October. All proceeds will go to Against Malaria.

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Christopher Owen’s story The Drownings is to be published by the Literary Journal of Coastal Maine at the University of Maine at Machias.

Olivia Busby, Stephanie Connell and Richard Ward will be performing in The Wet Peacock and an adapted version of The Owl and the Pussy-Cat, with Carolyn Lloyd-Davies, as part of Living the Drama’s short tour of care and residential homes around Oxford in October.

See Part 1 of Wally Sewell’s serial Signifying Nothing on YouTube, featuring a pageant of AWLies: Neele Pels, Michael Duran, Ben Owora, Liam O’Grady, Tony Parkin & Susan Casanove.

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Congratulations to Robin Miller, whose play Liberty Hall, read at AWL just a few months ago, is now published by Stagescripts.

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Living the Drama - Carolyn Lloyd-Davies, Stephanie Connell and Jo Boston) is seeking a new (unpublished) play by an up-and-coming writer, to produce and perform in Oxford, in the Summer of 2018. Following this performance, a transfer to London is a possibility. The play will be directed by Kevin Tomlinson (Artistic Director of KEPOW! Theatre). This will be Living the Drama’s third professionally produced play in the last 3 years.

Submissions deadline is midnight October 31st. We’ll create a shortlist of two or three plays with each play receiving a reading in Oxford in late November - involving professional actors led by Kevin Tomlinson - before the final play is selected. We’ll be seeking Arts Council funding to perform the play at the Offbeat Festival in Oxford (July 2018).

Guidelines for submission

We are looking for a full length play (minimum 75 pages - see the format requirements) which has a cast of 2-5 actors (preferably 3-4 actors) and at least one strong female role. We have no specific, fixed age or gender requirements for the characters other than a preference for gender balance if relevant to the story line.

Preference will be given to scripts which reflect one of our main corporate objectives which is: “focussing on ethical dilemmas, conflicts and pressures in today’s multi-cultural and socially diverse Britain”. Ideally, the play should be a comedy or have elements of humour or at least light/dark contrast within the main storyline.

Scripts should adhere to a standard stage play format, using Arial 12, with title and page numbering on the bottom of each page. As we will be using an initial ’blind assessment’ process please do NOT include your name or contact details in the header or footer. Your name, email and phone number plus any relevant web site should be clearly presented on the cover page only, along with the title of the play. The first page should only have the title and a brief character list.

Script should be emailed to Jo Boston. Contact via the Living the Drama website.

Kenneth Michaels is directing three new shows for White Horse Theatre (Europe’s largest educational theatre company).

The productions will tour Germany and several other countries until July 2018.

The shows include a new musical, Lip Gloss, and two plays, Move to Junk and the children’s show Fear in the Forest.

Further Events in the Month Ahead

North London Actors celebrates its 10th anniversary on Wednesday November 15th with a performance of The Marriage of Figaro at Park Theatre. AWL members taking part are Michael Duran, Gareth Pilkington, Hayward B. Morse, Andrew Loudon, Eleanor Caird Rhodes, Neele Pels and Rick Alancroft. The director is Monty Holender.

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Georgia Riley will be performing as Hero in Controlled Chaos Theatre Company’s production of Much Ado About Nothing, running from the 14th-26th November at the Waterloo East Theatre.

14 November: Tuesday - Saturday 7.30; Sunday 4.00

£14 (£12 if booked by 1st November)

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Tom Jensen’s 10-minute play Clean Break, which has been read at AWL, will be performed in Short(s)Wave, an evening of new writing at the Old Red Lion Theatre on 12th and 13th November.

£12 (£10 concs)

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Future Plans

Lee Peck will be playing Abanazar in Aladdin at the Corn Hall Arts Centre, Diss, Norfolk.

16 December to 28 December

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Maurice Thorogood directs this year’s Chequer Mead (East Grinstead) Christmas pantomime, Beauty and the Beast.

16 December to 31 December

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Keith Warren has launched a new singing practice: Singing Lessons | UK | The Vocal GP. Keith studied at Guildhall School of Music and Drama and went on to complete the prestigious postgraduate Music Theatre course at The Royal Academy of Music in London.

“I will demonstrate everything for you, by example - proving the technique with real & tangible results. Total transparency; fully explained. I am dedicated to a school of singing that has been empowering singers for over a century. (The main influence for Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Rihanna’s teacher, Seth Riggs) Championed and perfected by the great singing teacher, E. Herbert-Caesari and his colleague, the legendary tenor Beniamino Gigli, this approach provides us a totally natural, healthy, vibrant, beautiful, flexible and utterly sustainable technique that will allow for many years of great singing and pure enjoyment.”

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Bronwyn Baud is a qualified teacher of the Alexander Technique and has been for almost 20 years.

Sessions are normally £35. Bronwyn is offering a 20% discount to AWL Members for 5 sessions, thereafter 10%.

People use the Technique for a wide range of reasons, including preventing injury in music, drama and sport, enhancing business and presentation skills, developing ease and elegance in movement, and supporting pregnancy and childbirth.

To book a lesson or just to find out more about the Technique, call Bronwyn Baud on 07531 447 887 or email her via her AWL page.

07531 447 887

Viv Lake has done quite a bit of research into theatrical and family history and accumulated a lot of information which might prove useful to other AWL members who have been looking into family or theatrical history.

She has lists of information such as stage names and aliases, biogs, obituaries, where they are buried, census returns which mention performers, old theatrical companies and theatres, actor-managers, and photocopies or pdfs of very old playbills, as well as text from theatrical journals and newspapers, most of which are from the Georgian and Victorian eras, and earlier, in Great Britain and America.

If you’re interested in Viv doing just a basic search for free through her files, please speak to her at an AWL meeting, or email her via her AWL page.

Hedley England a director/editor, is offering his services to provide a professional Showreel for AWL members for a reasonable price.

The AWL deal is that actors only pay for the hire of the camera, the price obviously to be agreed upon, and Hedley would give his time free to direct and edit the showreel professionally. He can provide a DVD with a menu, and also work with existing footage.

Click for examples of his work.

Contact Hedley on 07984 616 711

Stephanie Connell is an award winning web designer who has been creating websites for the past seven years. Each website is handmade and specific to the client’s requirements and is therefore unique. She will guide you through the process and provide design and practical suggestions where necessary. She offers aftercare service which she feels is just as important as the creative process. A discount to AWL Members only.

AWL Members who have had their websites created recently: Carolyn Pertwee, David Hampshire, Julia Haythorn and Hedley England


Masterclass aims to offer young people between 17-30, exceptional creative opportunities and experiences with leaders of the theatre industry. A year-round programme of talks, workshops, special projects and career advice is intended to give people insight into all aspects of theatre from writing and directing to acting and producing. Masterclass strives to provide all the events for free, so that people of all abilities, status and background can be inspired by and learn from masters of the craft.

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