Creative Writing for Live Performance

Book now for Creative Writing for Live Performance
Women writing in a classroom and smiling

Key information:

Course dates:
Wednesday evenings, 25 January - 01 March 2023
Course times:
Art form:
Drama | Other Art Forms | Writing
12pm, Monday 23 January 2023
Level of study:
Short Courses & Summer Schools (ages 18+)
Mode of study:
Guildhall School of Music & Drama
Evening | Spring

Course info

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Ages 18+

Course Dates & Times

Wednesday evenings on 25 January, 01, 08, 15, 22 February and 01 March 2023
7pm–9pm, weekly

About Creative Writing for Live Performance

This six-week course will develop your creative writing skills and provide you with inspiration to bring an idea for theatre to life. The course will focus on sparking ideas and creating theatre through text, with an active approach to creative writing that will bring writers away from their desks.

Who is the course for?

Anyone who has an idea for a story and wants to bring it to life, or anyone who wants to write for performance but doesn’t know where to start.

What can I expect?

You can expect to:

  • Learn how to write stories for performance
  • Develop writing techniques through exercises, including improvisation
  • Gain an understanding of structure, form and character development

There will be optional tasks for you to complete between each session, with the aim of having a completed piece of writing by the end of the course. You will have the opportunity to hear your writing performed by actors.

Do I need anything for the course?
  • There will be required reading and a brief written exercise prior to the start of the course
  • You will be given optional homework (written and/or practical) of which completion is recommended to gain the most out of the course (about one hour per week).
  • Attendance of all six sessions is recommended to allow progression of learning and for the benefit of the group as a whole.

Course Fee

"It will challenge you to start making the thing you've been thinking about, to take yourself seriously and free yourself to be playful and inspired - do it!"

– participant on Creative Writing for Performance, Autumn 2021

This course has now started. Join our mailing list to hear about future dates and new courses.


About the Course Tutor

The course has been developed by award-winning writers and performers Maddie Rice and Tom Machell. The course will be led by Tom Machell. 

Maddie Rice is known for her work on Fleabag (2016), Every Blank Ever (2018) and Handy (2019).

As a writer she is currently developing television projects with Apple TV, NBC Universal, AMC, Mammoth Screen, HatTrick, Rocliffe and STV and her first pilot HANDY was aired on RTE in April 2019.

Maddie is currently under commission to write a new play for SOHO Theatre and Drywrite as one of the SOHO SIX.

Her debut play Pickle Jar won the 'Three Weeks Editors award' in Edinburgh, transferred to SOHO Theatre and is now being developed for television with NBC Universal.

As an actress Maddie most recently won critical acclaim starring in the smash-hit Fleabag UK and Australian tour. She writes and performs with comedy groups zazU and Lead Pencil. 

Tom Machell is an award-winning writer and actor, his latest short film A Spoonful won Best Short Script at the UK Film Festival, Los Angeles Motion Picture Film Festival and Changing Face International Film Festival. 

Ticker, Tom's debut play, was published by Play Dead Press and completed a run at the Underbelly, Edinburgh Fringe in 2019 to critical acclaim. Tom's latest play Second The Best has just finished its initial ACE supported R&D and will run in 2021. 

Tom recently wrote and starred in his first comedy short for Channel 4 Junior Doctors Padz. He is currently writing his first children's TV series Elliot's Guide To Everything in partnership with the BFI and is adapting Ticker into a television series which he will write and star in. 

As an actor Tom made his Off-Broadway debut with Carol Tambor award winning play Life According to Saki, is a series regular on Comedy Central's viral sketch show Every Blank Ever and has appeared in a number of TV, feature films and shorts as well as off West End and regional theatre productions. 

Tom is part of award winning comedy troupe zazU who have four successful Edinburgh Fringe runs, transferring all shows to sell-out runs at the Soho Theatre. They are currently developing their work for radio and television.

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