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Playwriting in the Marketplace - TFT00065M

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  • Department: Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Lisa Peschel
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2021-22

Module summary

This module introduces you to the entire sequence of new play development, from the beginning of the creative writing process to workshopping with other theatre practitioners to the redrafting process.  In weeks 5-9 of the autumn term, you will explore key points in the development process and the documents and practices necessary to move through this process (how to write a treatment, preparing for and running a new play workshop, different approaches to commissioning, presenting a first draft to a funding board, etc.).  In weeks 2-5 of the spring term, you will practise new play workshopping techniques and the redrafting processes that follow such workshops.

Professional requirements


Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2021-22 to Spring Term 2021-22

Module aims

The aims of the module are:

¿ to introduce you to new play development processes in the UK, from pitching of initial ideas to submission of production drafts

¿ to stimulate critical analysis of the marketplace for new writing in the UK

¿ to expose you to the types of practical writing necessary to engage in these processes (writing a pitch letter, writing a grant application, etc.)

¿ to provide you with opportunities to practise describing and promoting your own dramatic writing, both in writing and through presentations

¿ to explore collaboration with other theatre professionals and members of the public as part of the workshopping and development process to prepare a new play for staging

¿ to provide you with opportunities to engage in the vital step of redrafting during and after a reading/workshop

¿ to explore different ways that playwrights, directors and dramaturgs collaborate during rehearsals of the finished draft of the script.


Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module you will be expected:

¿ to demonstrate an understanding of various new play development processes

¿ to have developed the practical writing and presentation skills that will enable you to engage in those processes

¿ to be able to work collaboratively with other theatre professionals to workshop a script in development and to rehearse a script for production

¿ to have learned to analyse and evaluate feedback received as part of a workshopping or play reading process to help you in the process of redrafting your script

¿ to exercise a critical understanding of playwriting in the theatre industry.


Task Length % of module mark
N/A 70
Oral presentation/seminar/exam
N/A 30

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
N/A 70
Oral presentation/seminar/exam
N/A 30

Module feedback

Students will receive written feedback on their summative work within the 20-working day University feedback policy, with an option of an individual follow-up meeting if any aspect of the feedback is unclear to the student or if more guidance on interpreting the feedback is requested.

Indicative reading

Grace, Fraser, and Clare Bayley. Playwriting. London: Bloomsbury, 2015.

Lane, David. Contemporary British Drama. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2010.

Neipris, Janet. To Be A Playwright. New York: Routledge, 2005.

Radosavljevic, Duska. Theatre-Making: Interplay Between Text and Performance in the 21st Century. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.

Rebellato, Dan (ed.). Modern British Playwriting: 2000-2009: Voices, Documents, New Interpretations. London: Methuen, 2013.

Sierz, Aleks. Rewriting the Nation. London: Faber, 2011.

Simonsen, Barbara (ed.). The Art of Rehearsal. London: Bloomsbury, 2017.

Tomlin, Liz. British Theatre Companies: 1995-2014. London: Bloomsbury, 2015.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.