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The WFTS Podcast

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WriteForTheStage is a development agency for stage writers and theatre producers: helping writers of all levels of experience to hone their skills and get to the heart of what they want to say. They've helped hundreds of writers to bring their work to stages around the UK, including major theatres in Manchester and London, at the Edinburgh Fringe, Greater Manchester Fringe, and beyond.

Playwriting masterclasses.
Go to www.writeforthestage.co.uk for more info
19 Episodes
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We talk to Stefanie Moore, writer of Blue Lines (performed at Greater Manchester Fringe Festival 2019).  Stef applied to The Hive for a mentoring opportunity, supported by Arts Council England. Tim Firth was her appointed mentor. We talk to Stef about the experience: about the process of being mentored, as well as how to be a good mentee.  We talk about how to take feedback and how to develop a script from the initial idea, up until it goes live in front of an audience.  Presented by Mike Heath and Stephen M Hornby. For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to WriteForTheStage.co.uk. To follow Stephen on Twitter, search for @StephenMHornby and @Inkbrew.
We're very lucky, for this episode, to have had the opportunity to interview the Head of New Works at Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse.  Francesca Peschier is the Head of New Works at Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse and she shares her insights into the art of dramaturgy and how it can help draw out theme, character, and structure in playwriting. We explore the idea that  a dramaturg is an early outside eye that can be invaluable to a playwright of any experience and we discuss how she has helped me as a playwright during the development of my latest play.   Francesca explains how the relationship between writer and dramaturg often works, as well as the relationship with the director when she goes into the rehearsal room.  For more information about opportunities at Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse, including access to the Playwrights Programme, go to everymanplayhouse.com. For more information about WriteForTheStage courses, publications, and to read our blog, go to writeforthestage.co.uk. Thanks for listening. 
Mike Heath speaks to Laura Harper, writer of "A Quick Guide To Ruining Your Life". The piece was performed at this year's Greater Manchester Fringe Festival and won first prize in The WriteForTheStage Prize for New Writing. Laura tells us about how she develops her ideas, how she juggles her home life with her writing, and how she develops character voices and story arc. Laura's play will be published by WFTS Books in 2020.  For more information about The WriteForTheStage Prize for New Writing, our courses, our publications, and to read our blog, go to writeforthestage.co.uk
We're at the Greater Manchester Fringe Festival launch during this episode, talking all things process and development with some of the artists bringing their work to this year's Greater Manchester Fringe Festival. We talk with the makers of Aussie Animal Hospice, The Book Of Now, Bypass, Boots and Braces, Bard, The Earl of Winchelsea's Brother, Revolt She Said/Revolt Again, The Joy of Cannes, Disrupted, Death of a Muse, and This Way Up. And a special interview with Meredith.  Details of all the shows are available at greatermanchesterfringe.co.uk. For more information about WriteForTheStage and our courses, go to writeforthestage.co.uk. Presenters are Stephen M Hornby (@stephenmhornby) and Mike Heath (@spikal).
WriteForTheStage are official sponsors of The Greater Manchester Fringe Festival. This year, we’re meeting the artists who are bringing their work to the festival and discussing their respective creative processes.  In this episode, we interview the creatives behind Tits Up; Adam, History of Man; Man Chase Women Choose; Best Girl; Kasterborous in Bolton; Skank; Big Box Aliens; Mojo.  For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to WriteForTheStage.co.uk. For information about the Greater Manchester Fringe Festival, go to greatermanchesterfringe.co.uk
WriteForTheStage are official sponsors of The Greater Manchester Fringe Festival. This year, we’re meeting the artists who are bringing their work to the festival and discussing their respective creative processes.  In this episode we feature the creators of: My Bottom Did A Burp In Class; Our Kid; Once Upon a Time In Trieste; Is Trying Enough; Fifty & Nifty; and we talk to Jonathan Hall about winning the WFTS Prize for New Writing in 2018. For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to WriteForTheStage.co.uk. For information about the Greater Manchester Fringe Festival, go to greatermanchesterfringe.co.uk
In this episode, we explore how to create tension and conflict, and how to get those devices to propel the action of your story. We examine the construction of The Dramatic Question - a device that helps to keep the writer on track and the audience on the edge of their seats.  We also introduce the first listener's challenge - to write a piece that we'll read out during a future podcast.  If you enjoy this podcast, please give us a rating on iTunes, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or Spotify. It helps more people discover us. If you have a question, send us a Tweet @Write4TheStage, and follow us on Instagram for accompanying images.  For more information about WFTS, our courses, our publications, our support of the GMFringe Festival, The WFTS Prize for New Writing, or to read our blog, go to writeforthestage.co.uk
After a three-month break, Mike and Stephen come back together to be rude to each other all over again. This week we discuss our retrospective writing processes: Mike discusses the process of taking a script through a development process with actors and feedback from the audience, and Stephen discusses working with archive material and how he gathers material in the writing of history-based plays.  We discuss Trainspotting Live; working with living legend, Peter Tatchell; Stephen's play, The Adhesion of Love; and how we start and develop new work from the seed of inspiration.  For more information about WriteForTheStage, our courses, and our blog, go to writeforthestage.co.uk.
In this episode our regular hosts, playwrights Mike Heath and Stephen M Hornby, interview Dr Szilvi Naray-Davey. They share their favourite theatre experiences from 2018 and get a bit pissed on cheap Prosecco. Szilvi discusses the intricacies of dramatic language translation, and tells us about how European theatre differs with British theatre, with a specific focus on the thriving theatre world of Budapest.  There's a loud bang at 4min45secs. Don't worry - nobody died.  This is the final episode of Series 1 of The WriteForTheStage podcast. We've loved making it and we've loved hearing from you. Thank you for your support.  Have a great Christmas and New Year everyone, and we'll see you again in 2019 with Series 2.  For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to writeforthestage .co.uk
This week we’re going to be analysing the second half of our study movie - When Harry Met Sally. We’re going to explore the falling action of Act 2 where the protagonist goes from triumph to despair, and the new tension and twist that helps our protagonist seek out a resolution to the POTW by addressing their emotional need in Act 3. For more information about WFTS, go to writeforthestage.co.uk - or email us at podcast@writeforthestage.co.uk. Follow us on Insta and Twitter @Write4TheStage
Cathy Crabb is one of the North West's most prolific playwrights. She has written over 20 stage plays and her work has appeared extensively on Manchester's fringe theatre scene, as well as at main-house theatres, such as Oldham Coliseum, Royal Exchange, and Contact Theatre. Mike Heath interviews Cathy, asking about what inspires her, how she develops her characters, and what drove her to write in the first place. He asks a list of listener questions. They hark back to the good old days of Studio Salford and swinging from a chandelier at Manchester's Palace Theatre. For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to writeforthestage.co.uk Follow Cathy on Twitter and Instagram - @CathyCrabb
In this episode, we explore how the classic 1989 movie, When Harry Met Sally, uses the 3-act structure to tell a satisfying story. We explore the set-up of Act 1 and the Rising Action of Act 2. The second half of the film will be analyzed in Episode 9. For more information about WriteForTheStage and their courses, publications, and their blog, go to www.writeforthestage.co.uk
Mike Heath and Stephen M Hornby discuss the functions of Act 3 and how playwrights have approached the end of their plays. We explore The Habit of Art, by Alan Bennett; The Dumb Waiter, by Harold Pinter; and Escaped Alone, by Caryl Churchill. Banter and exploration of the 3-act structure. For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to www.writeforthestage.co.uk
Episode 5 - Act 3

Episode 5 - Act 3

2018-11-1720:37

In this episode, Mike Heath looks at the functions of Act 3 within the 3-act structure. We explore how the set-up of Act 1 and the build of Act 2 contribute towards a whole, creating a resolution that feels satisfying and logical. Mike addresses a question from an audience member, and talks about how Act 3 in his play, The Game of Two Halves, is used to affirm the theme of the play. The Game of Two Halves is available from Amazon in paperback and Kindle edition - search "Mike Heath: Plays One". For more information about WriteForTheStage, go to WriteForTheStage.co.uk
Mike and Stephen discuss Act 2 of their favourite plays. They explore Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, by Tennessee Williams; and Angels of America, by Tony Kushner. They also discuss by Ear For Eye, by Debbie Tucker Green, and Faraway by Carole Churchill.
In this episode we’re going to talk about the Rising action of Act 2, and how it sets up the Falling Action; driving the character from a moment of triumph towards a pit of despair. We’re also going to include a question from a listener regarding the function of dialogue. The study play is The Game of Two Halves, by Mike Heath. Buy a copy of the play on Amazon (paperback and Kindle versions available. It's an Amazon Prime item, so will arrive within a day or two. Go to Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com and search for "Mike Heath: Plays One".
Introducing our co-host, Stephen M Hornby. Mike Heath and Stephen discuss the openings of some of their favourite plays: exploring what makes a powerful, striking opening (and what doesn’t). Bants and conversation about modern theatre, along with a fair amount of opinion and mutual ribbing. Go to www.writeforthestage.co.uk for information about WriteForTheStage courses. Follow us on @Write4TheStage on Instagram and Twitter.
In this episode we’ll be exploring the functions and purpose of Act 1 in the 3-Act Structure. The study piece is The Game of Two Halves, by Mike Heath. You can get a copy of the script (first play in Mike Heath:Plays One) in either paperback or on Kindle at writeforthestage.co.uk/wfts-publishing
In this episode, Mike Heath and Stephen M Hornby interview award-winning playwright, Rob Ward. They discuss the development of Rob’s one-person and multi character shows. For more information about WriteForTheStage, our courses, our publications, or to read our blog, go to www.writeforthestage.co.uk
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