Escalator Plays is part of a wider Escalator Talent Development initiative that is supported by Arts Council England East. This particular strand is managed by HighTide Festival Theatre.
The scheme is designed to support early career playwrights from the East of England, and those wanting to work in the region to develop their work and showcase their work at partner theatres, who have included Eastern Angles, New Wolsey Ipswich, and Mercury Theatre Colchester.
As part of a writers’ group, 6 writers each year will be offered a bespoke package of development which is a means to grow their own writing and capacity to see that work produced. Escalator Plays aims to improve the quality of each writers work and connect each of the group to the wider theatre industry within the region. This development will include access to one on one sessions, workshops, time with creatives and other writers and may lead to work being shared or fully produced in the future.
Applications for the 2013/14 Escalator Plays intake open in May 2013.
Escalator writers will receive bespoke development of their work focussed around the starting of a new full length play or performance text. This development is based on the writer and their individual needs and where appropriate they will be supported to apply through Grants for the Arts (GfTA) to fund the development programme.
With this in mind, examples of support include:
- Targeted mentoring from fellow creatives, including HighTide Artistic Director, playwrights and directors.
- Opportunities to see new plays in London, regionally and internationally
- Support to write a new full length play or performance text.
- Workshop space to see the process from page to stage.
- Support and a platform to share work in the East of England and beyond and receive feedback
- Opportunity to be part of the Escalator Plays Writers’ Group, learning alongside fellow writers and developing work together.
- Opportunities to work on bespoke projects and shorter works throughout the year.
In addition to this, Escalator Writers’ also benefit from
- The recognition of being attached to Escalator Plays as a writer
- The opportunity to develop a relationship with HighTide Festival Theatre who will act as advocates for your writing to the wider industry
- Additional specialist support in supporting your writing through funding and application to Grants for the Arts.
- Support in establishing networks in the East of England and beyond.
Throughout the 12 months each writer will have a series of behind closed doors development opportunities as well as public sharings of work. One of these public sharings will occur at the annual HighTide Festival. However, we are keen to see these writers working in theatre buildings as well as with companies in the region and will be seeking platforms for this. It is the intention of the scheme to provide the region with a strong playwright focussed development opportunity and these writers will be keen to meet, discuss and share their work with our partners in the region.
Regional partners will be invited to all sharings of work and HighTide will facilitate conversations between the Escalator Playwrights and regional partners. Should you be keen to engage in any way please contact us. Furthermore, there will be an online presence for the work as well as regular updates on the playwrights and their work throughout the year.
Dates for 2013
May 30 2013
August 31 2013
Deadline for Applications to 2012/13 Escalator Plays
Escalator Plays announces the 6 successful playwrights and applications to Grants for the Arts are submitted (6 weeks wait until results of application announced)
October 2013 – April 2014
The 6 playwrights start their new work and receive bespoke development
Presentations of Escalator Plays work in development at the HighTide Festival
Each writer develops their work from feedback given by HighTide
Rehearsed Readings in the region in collaboration with our partners
Applications to Escalator Plays for 2013/14 will open on May 30 2013.
Successful applicants will be notified by the end of October 2013.
Do I have to be based in the East of England to apply?
No, you don't have to be living in or from the East of England to apply to Escalator Plays, although we do strongly urge playwrights who do, to apply to the scheme. However, we are keen to select playwrights and plays that are developed within the East of England, furthering the high quality work already present and developing new writing throughout the East. If you are not from or based in the region we would however like to hear why developing your play with HighTide in the East of England is important to you.
What financial support is available through Escalator Plays?
The 6 successful playwrights will each apply to Arts Council England, through Grants for the Arts (GFTA), for funding that we imagine will not be more than £10,000. HighTide will be offering support through this process and assisting where possible to strengthen the application. We imagine that this will be the first thing the successful playwrights do on the scheme, to fund their writing and development of their play.
N:B being selected to take part of Escalator Plays does not gurantee that your GFTA will be successful.
What type of plays and playwriughts are HighTide keen to develop through Escalator Plays?
HighTide are keen to see a varied group of playwrights supported through Escalator Plays and a group that reflects our festival programming ambitions of diverse, ambitious and bold new plays. We are keen to challenge and be challenged by the playwrights who apply and are looking for expansive vision but real attention to the details of writing for theatre. Have a look at recent productions and HighTide writers for a sense of our tastes but remember that we want 6 different playwrights and so might be looking for more than those plays we have programmed in the past.
How much time should I dedicate to Escalator Plays if I am successful?
Escalator Plays is a bespoke programme of development, designed to fit to each of the 6 individual playwrights. Although we imagine to be meeting as a group at least once a month, we will decide upon exact details once we have our group established. There will be numerous and extensive one on one sessions, correspondence and play development with further creative teams throughout the year, as well as public presentations and online elements to the work. This scheme is for playwrights and we are looking for dedication but understand that life is multi faceted and so have built a programme of activity that is flexible.