Our friends at ETT (English Touring Theatre) have announced the inaugural Nationwide Voices; a year-long development programme for six playwrights across the UK.
The scheme is led by ETT in collaboration with six companies and venues including Sheffield Theatres, each offering a year-long attachment for each of its chosen playwrights. This year we're excited to announce that we'll be working with John Rwothomack who wrote and performed Far Gone in the Studio, and was the Assistant Director on The Last King of Scotland.
Nationwide Voices aims to connect writers with mid-scale theatres and support them through the crucial career transition onto main stages, while also enabling theatres nationwide to platform fresh and imaginative voices with a connection to their local area.
These six talented writers will broaden and develop their craft through regular workshop sessions led by the award-winning playwright and our Associate Artist Chris Bush.
Chris Bush added,
“A lot of writers seem to spend years (if not decades) in a state of perpetual emergence. What makes this scheme so important is its specific aim to get newer writers creating work for bigger auditoriums and wider audiences. At the moment, everyone in our industry is understandably preoccupied with how to survive the current crisis. However, in the long term the theatre will only thrive by investing in talent and commissioning "riskier" work from artists who aren't yet established names. If we keep looking to the same few 'safe pairs of hands' we doom ourselves to ever-dwindling audiences and diminishing artistic returns. Instead, our ambition must be to create work that is truly representative of our nation, by championing voices that haven't yet been given a large national platform. Nationwide Voices has selected six of the most exciting writers from across the country, and I can't wait to start working with them."