Two writers have been selected to receive bespoke support for their writing, developing an existing idea and transferring it from the page to the stage in just six weeks.
Led by Resident Directors Emily Aboud and Anthony Simpson-Pike, we opened this window for submissions in the summer exclusively for Black writers, with a particular focus on amplifying stories from writers of Caribbean descent – with playwrights, comedians, poets and actors all submitted new writing to us. After an interview process, the final two writers were paired with a director to receive tailored dramaturgy support throughout September and October.
Excerpts of the final drafts were meant performed in script-in-hand readings by Young Actors in the TP network. Due to the second lockdown, this in-person night had to be cancelled.
However, Theatre Peckham is proud to present a trailer for Highlife Romance by Jacob Roberts-Mensah, and an extract of One Way Out by Montel Douglas. These were both recorded over Zoom during the lockdown period, and then edited by Audio Producer Weyland Mckenzie. This created the chance for the writers to test their work out, to hear it performed by actors, to enable crucial discussions to be had and to receive feedback for the next stages of their work. TP will continue to guide the writers with programming opportunities and writing funding applications.
One Way Out by Montel Douglas
Can we determine our fate? Or do we only have one way out? When young men from London finally are open to the independent world, what challenges do they face and how do they overcome them – ‘I feel like we live in fear. Fear of being our true selves’ ‘its generation of conditions’. When faced with challenges physically and mentally, we discover how their bond or lack of it, channels the journey of how their individual lives go on.
The soundcloud includes a 15 minute extract of the piece.
|Montel Douglas||Writer||Montel Douglas is an Actor and Writer who trained at Drama St Mary’s Twickenham & Identity Drama school. One Way Out is Montel Douglas’ writing debut. Theatre credits include START ( Theatre Peckham)Run It Back ( Talawa Theatre)Macbeth (Orange Three Theatre)Shebeen (Theatre Royal Stratford East/ Nottingham Playhouse). Television credits include Ransom (CBS),Code 404 (Sky One). Theatre credits whilst training include Revolt.She Said. Revolt again. (Drama St Mary’s), Macbeth (Drama St Mary’s), The Frontline (Drama St Mary’s), Ich Bin Faust (Courtyard Theatre), Me and My Friend (Courtyard Theatre) and Chatham Avenue (National Theatre Studio).|
|Emily Aboud||Director and Mentor||Emily Aboud is a theatre director, a film director and a writer born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, based in London.|
She is an associate artist at the Bush Theatre and Artistic Director of Lagahoo Productions.
She was shortlisted for the Genesis Future Directors Award and the Old Vic 12 2020. She is currently shortlisted for the JMK Award 2020.
Her directing credits include The Fairytale Revolution (Theatre503), Pink Lemonade (Gate Theatre, Edinburgh Fringe 2019), the OFFIE-nominated SPLINTERED, also writer (Bunker Theatre, Edinburgh Fringe 2019, Vault Festival 2020), Exceptional Promise (Bush Theatre), Salty Irina (Ovalhouse), What We Talk About when We (Don’t) Talk about Race (Theatre503), Hopes, Dreams or Goldfish (Bunker Theatre) among others
Highlife Romance by Jacob Roberts-Mensah
Love is unpredictable, messy and complicated. Often, there is one unifying thread that brings two souls together; for Nana Akua and Michael, the magnetic rhythm and sultry sounds of Ghanaian highlife music is that thread. In this short comedy drama, the audience can expect to explore issues of identity within the diaspora, love and the impact and power of music.
Soundcloud includes an interview with Jacob Roberts-Mensah and Anthony Simpson-Pike on what Scratch That is about and what it has been like, as well as a trailer for the piece.
|Jacob Roberts-Mensah||Writer||Jacob is a British-Ghanaian producer/writer living in London. He is the founder of OUR DAY, a company focused on producing narrative storytelling podcasts, born out of a passion to tell authentic African stories from the continent and the Diaspora. His flagship production is DEM TIMES, a young adult comedy-drama following the re-education of British-born troublemaker, Samuel Adjei, in a Ghanaian boarding school. DEM TIMES has been featured among the New & Noteworthy on Apple Podcasts, the Best Podcasts of the Week and Top Podcasts of 2020 for Spotify UK and one of The 79 Best Podcasts You Can Listen To In 2020 by Esquire.com. It has also been recommended by The Guardian and was featured on The Black Culture Channel at Deezer.|
|Anthony Simpons-Pike||Director and Mentor||Anthony Simpson-Pike is a director, writer and dramaturg whose work has been staged in theatres including The Gate, The Young Vic and The Royal Court. He is currently the Associate Director at The Yard Theatre, was previously the associate director at The Gate Theatre and was a finalist for the 20th JMK award.|
|Vanessa Owusu||Actor||Nana Akua|
|Yomi Bello||Music featured in the piece|
Weyland Mckenzie, Audio Producer, is a multidisciplinary Audio Artist born and raised in Stoke Newington, London. As an audio producer Weyland has worked as a producer on Small Axe: The Podcast, assistant producer on the BBC Sounds podcast commissioning team, producer on multiple shows for Transmission Roundhouse and co-producer on ABOE RADIO for No Signal. Weyland’s has also created music for worldwide ad campaigns for companies like Samsung, Absolut Vodka and Just Eat.