Monthly archives: March 2016

Open Auditions for BROKEN BISCUITS

London – Monday 11 April, 10am – 6pm 
Newcastle – Friday 15 April, 10am – 6pm

We’re holding some open auditions to find the stars of Tom Wells’ amazing new play BROKEN BISCUITS.

As we announced yesterday, we’re co-producing the world premiere of Tom’s hilarious and heart-warming play with Live Theatre in October before it embarks on a national tour until December 2016.

We regularly hold Open Auditions across the country just to meet new actors but they are usually general meetings. This time we’re looking for some specific people…

16-year-olds Megan, Ben and Holly are definitely not the cool kids. Holly’s into graphic novels and computers, Ben enjoys crochet and cross-stitch and Megan likes biscuits maybe a bit too much. They’ve just done their GCSEs and with a long summer holiday stretching ahead of them, Megan decides they have to make themselves cool. And there’s nothing cooler than being in a band.

So we’re hosting Open Auditions in Newcastle and London to meet some amazing Megans, Bens and Hollys. Is it you? Check the details below and get in touch.


We’re auditioning for three specific roles, so please only apply if you genuinely believe you are right for the part. Here are the character breakdowns:

MEGAN: 16. A force of nature. It’s hard to get a word in edgeways with Megan. She’s a big personality and the leader of the three friends. She’s quick and smart with words, very funny with a dry sense of humour. Her bravado sometimes covers the fact she feels unsure of herself. She is bullied at school for being overweight.

HOLLY: 16. Holly is super smart and top of the class. She is painfully shy and feels most comfortable with Megan and Ben, or on her own with her much loved graphic novels or online. She is hoping to go on to study computing and learn code. Boys scare her.

BEN: 16. Ben is the only boy at school studying textiles. Sometimes he likes to wear a dress, which is mostly fine except his Mum’s new fella has two macho sons who might be moving in with them and Ben’s not sure how they will feel about it. He works part-time in the local old people’s home running arts and crafts sessions.

Sound like you? Great. Keep reading…



Please note you must be over the age of 16 to apply for an audition. There is no upper age limit but we are looking for actors who can play 16 so please only apply if your playing age is a fit for the characters.


Please email your CV to with the name of the city you wish to audition in and the character you wish to audition for in the subject line. So if you want to audition for Megan in Newcastle your subject line should read NEWCASTLE / MEGAN.

The closing date for applications is 9am on Thursday 7 April.


We want these auditions to be genuinely open so if we receive more applications than we have spaces we will draw names at random from the submissions until the places are filled. We will then draw up a reserve list – again at random – and should more spaces become available we will fill them from the reserve list.


We will email you to let you know if you have an audition, or if you are on the reserve list by 6pm on Thursday 7 April.


When we email you to confirm your audition we will send you some text from the play to prepare.


You’ll be meeting the director James Grieve and Producer Hanna Streeter. Additionally in Newcastle you will meet Live Theatre Producer Graeme Thompson.


We want to meet as many people as we possibly can so each audition will be just a few minutes.


We’ll have a chat, find out a bit about you, and then we’ll ask you to read the text from the play we sent you in advance. That’s it. Easy.


Sorry, we don’t accept applications from agents. If you have an agent, you must still apply yourself using your own email address.

That’s because we want to maintain a fair system for everyone, including those actors who are unrepresented.


If we love what you do we’ll invite you back for another more in depth audition in the coming months. You will need to be available for the rehearsals and tour from September to December 2016.

Programme 2016

Here we go… the grand unveiling of our Programme 2016 in all its glory. A host of new plays from red hot writers hitting the road to the four corners of our green and pleasant land.

PP2016 season shows v8 web generic banner

Here’s a snapshot:

ROUNDABOUT features a new rep of three brand new plays by Katie Douglas, Alan Harris and Luke Norris at Summerhall in Edinburgh and on tour to Kent, Cornwall, Cumbria, Lincolnshire, Bedfordshire, Staffordshire, Yorkshire and Greater Manchester.

The world premiere of BROKEN BISCUITS by Tom Wells opens with our co-producers Live Theatre in Newcastle prior to a UK Tour.

WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK by Sabrina Mahfouz tours to 29 venues nationwide.

EVERY BRILLIANT THING is back on home soil by popular demand following an international tour.

COME TO WHERE I’M FROM comes to London with a week of live events across the capital featuring 30 playwrights.

Elinor Cook’s TEN WEEKS opens in London tonight.

Our transatlantic collaboration with legendary New York company Naked Angels sees two new radio plays by Nathan Bryon and Lucy Gillespie released as free to listen downloads.

Here’s what James & George have to say about it all:

“We’re raring to hit the road to the four corners of the UK with this cracking programme of new plays from some of the most exciting writers around. Roundabout will pop-up across the country with comedies from Luke Norris and Alan Harris, a superhero tale for children from Katie Douglas and a host of events from international visiting companies and local community groups, bringing a festival feel to every place it visits. We’re honoured to be working with talents as innovative as Sabrina Mahfouz – whose UK Garage musical is theatre you can rave to – and Tom Wells whose heart-warming new play will delight fans of his previous Paines Plough hit Jumpers For Goalposts. With Every Brilliant Thing returning to the UK after an international tour, London stories in Come To Where I’m From and new plays from Elinor Cook, Nathan Bryon, Lucy Gillespie, there’s a play for everyone, everywhere in Programme 2016.”

Paines Plough presents
2016 sees the return of Roundabout, our award-winning pop-up theatre. The all new Roundabout programme will preview from 19 – 24 July at Hackney Showroom in London before taking up residency once again at Summerhall during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and then touring nationwide.

Roundabout will tour nationwide in partnership with The Lowry, Hall For Cornwall, Margate Theatre Royal, Lincoln Performing Arts Centre, Brewery Arts Centre, Barnsley Civic, Appetite Stoke-on-Trent and Revoluton, Marsh Farm Estate in Luton.

In rep will be three World Premieres…

A Paines Plough, Sherman Cymru and Theatr Clwyd production
By Alan Harris

A deliciously quirky comedy from Alan Harris about two teenagers in Merthyr Tydfil who fall in love in Tesco but face a fight to save their parents from self-destruction.

LLT 466

A Paines Plough production
By Luke Norris

A very funny new play from Luke Norris about a 20-something who tries to ignore a lump until it’s almost too late.

GROW 466

A Paines Plough and Half Moon production
By Katie Douglas

An epic superhero quest for ages 7 to 11-year-olds from Katie Douglas.


PLUS… Roundabout will again host a programme of visiting companies at The Edinburgh Festival Fringe and on tour, and see the return of EARLIER / LATER, Paines Plough’s early morning and late night series of one-off shows, events, workshops and more.

A Paines Plough and Live Theatre production
By Tom Wells

The brand new play from JUMPERS FOR GOALPOSTS writer Tom Wells. A hilarious and heart-warming tale of three teenagers dreaming of rock ‘n’ roll stardom.

BB 466

A Paines Plough and Latitude Festival production
by Sabrina Mahfouz

Our hit UK Garage musical is back in our rehearsal room and getting set to hit the road to 29 venues nationwide. This is theatre you can rave to.


A Paines Plough and Pentabus Theatre Company production
By Duncan Macmillan with Jonny Donahoe

Our worldwide hit show is back on home soil in Edinburgh and on a UK tour this Autumn.

EBT 466

A Paines Plough and Tamasha production

Since 2010 more than 100 playwrights have written plays about the place they call home as part of our nationwide project, but never in London… until now…


A Paines Plough and Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama production
by Elinor Cook

Elinor Cook’s electrifying new play about the Alpha course transfers to The Gate in Notting Hill following its Cardiff premiere.

TW 466

Paines Plough and Naked Angels present
BILAL’S BIRTHDAY by Nathan Bryon
322 DAYS by Lucy Gillespie

Our transatlantic partnership with New York legends Naked Angels has resulted in these two cracking radio plays from rising US star Lucy Gillespie and our very own Playwright Fellow Nathan Bryon.

NA 466

Woop. And there’s lots more to come including a mega programme of visiting companies, one-off shows, events, workshops and fun stuff in Roundabout, the return of EARLIER/LATER, festival appearances, more tour dates, and probably other stuff we think up as we go along too.

But for now, welcome to Programme 2016. We hope you like it.


Hello (again!)… Charlotte



Hi everyone!

So, quick introduction, I’m Charlotte and I’m the new Finance & Admin Assistant here at Paines Plough.

I’ll probably be the one responding to your emails and greeting you at the office should anyone come calling (amongst other things of course).

I was first introduced to the world of new writing when I joined PP as Admin Placement in 2014. Getting to see shows such as HOPELESSLY DEVOTED and EVERY BRILLIANT THING make the journey from the rehearsal room out into the big wide world gave me so much enthusiasm at the thought that someday I’d be able to be a part of it all.

Fast forward 18 months and I’m back! As I write this, the WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK company are in their first day of rehearsals and it is sounding fantastic. I’m excited to see what this next year will bring, and even more thrilled at the prospect of experiencing my first (yes, I admit it, first) Edinburgh Fringe Festival with team PP in our wonderful ROUNDABOUT.

– Charlotte

Taste Tuesday: Caramelised Onion and Cheddar Cheese Quiche

Our General Manager, Aysha, totally spoiled us when her turn to rustle up something for Taste Tuesday rolled around, serving up a tangy, cheesy quiche with caramelised onions. If you fancy having a go at whipping up your own, here’s the how-to. 


Who doesn’t like quiche?! Following on from George’s breakfast bars, I thought I’d go for a lunchtime treat for the team – a nice simple Taste Tuesday to keep everyone happy.

Caramelised Onion and Cheddar Cheese Quiche
Serves 4
­ 300ml double cream
­ 500g onion, finely sliced
­ 3 tbsp balsamic Vinegar
­ 140g mature cheddar cheese, grated
­ Handful of pine nuts
­ 2 eggs
­ Seasoning

1. Fry the onions for 20-30 minutes in a little olive oil and the balsamic vinegar – this will give them enough time to start caramelising. You could leave them to cook for another hour, but we’re not looking for fully caramelised onions since they work nicely with a little texture remaining.
2. Meanwhile, whisk two eggs in a large measuring jug. To this add the cream, half the cheese and a generous pinch of salt and pepper.
3. Tip the onions into the pastry case before covering with the cream and cheese mixture. Sprinkle over the remaining cheese, pine nuts and season with a little more pepper. Then just pop the quiche into the oven at 170C for 20-25 minutes, or the cheese has turned golden brown.

Serve with rocket and more balsamic vinegar then get stuck in…




– Aysha x

What’s on the PP Stereo?

We are soooo excited for this weeks PP stereo because we’ve got tracks from our brand spanking new recruits. We can’t wait to introduce them to you all, right now all you need to know is that they are bloomin’ marvellous. In fact one of them has set the bar super high with this 2011 Frank Ocean classic….

‘I believe that marriage isn’t between a man and a woman; but between love and love’ – Frank Ocean

Developing New Writing: The Big Room

It’s hard to believe it’s been 12 months since the ray of sunshine that is Nathan Bryon joined Team PP as our Big Room Fellowship playwright – and what a year it has been! He’s been to Barcelona, joined us at Latitude and in Edinburgh, and also managed to squeeze in two development workshops to develop a new script. Not bad, eh? 

We got him to write one last blog for us before jetting off to film Benidorm – oh yeah, did we forget to mention that he acts too?! What a guy. It’s not goodbye, just see you later – it’s been a pleasure!

It’s that time again to blog for PP but sadly it will be the last time as the Big Room writer!

Down to business!!! I feel like I need to do one of those catch ups they put at the beginning of cheesy American show ‘Previously on the Big Room Fellowship…’ in bullet point form.

  • Another One Bites The Dust: A short play I wrote about police brutality in America was performed in Barcelona
  • I wanted to develop AOBTD play during my time with PP and after 3 days of workshopping and talking lots, the idea for Mixed Brain was floating around in my head, I just didn’t know what it was.
  • A further 4 days locked in the PP Big Room with no food or water resulted in me writing the first draft of Mixed Brain.

So after 4 days locked in the PP Big Room, OK I wasn’t technically locked in and OK there was food and water, lots of it actually. I had a first draft of my new play Mixed Brain… I wrapped up the first draft and ran off to the pub to see the Paines Plough Crew Dem and just forget about it for a while!

‘Mixed Brain is about exploring what it means to be Mixed Race in London in 2016, the story is set in a Mixed Race family about two brothers who have been bought up VERY differently and an incident that separates the whole family…’

Lots of Life happened and then George and James asked me what did I want to do to end this ‘Scheme??’ One thing was that I wanted see LOADS of theatre before I went back to Spain… so I did, I went and saw a lot, but what I really loved was ESCAPED ALONE – it was everything! MA RAINEY was magical!

I also wanted to hear Mixed Brain read out loud, as there is only so many times you can hear you own whiney voice saying your words! George and James then told me was money left over in the budget, after they had said no I couldn’t use it too fly first class to Jamaica for a week, I decided I wanted another 3 day workshop with Mixed Brain.

The script was in a first draft state, meaning bare spelling mistakes and just general chaos, and Rachel the legend then went around attaching dons to the workshop! First to the party is the Don of Dons, my flat white partner in crime, just general O.G Natalie Ibu was the director. We met in a PRET obvs, and I just thought YES she is a DON.  Natalie is the sort of person I can chat with for HOURS about everything and everything and just get wiser! SHE IS A WISE WISE DON!

Natalie and Rachel then literally got the avengers of young performers, god knows how all these dons were available at the same time.

The morning of the workshop Rachel texted me the cast list – I had just got back from working in Glasgow so was a bit knackered but I was just like RAAAAAAAAR!!! They are the fire of young British talent right now and I get to work with them for 3 days – what a fucking honor!

The first thing we did was a read of the text which for me was super useful to hear lots of other voices read in, and could allow me to realize that… the story would appear and disappear and some scenes were totally useless, but it’s cool I’m not down in the dumps – my first drafts I call my vomit draft: just getting it ALL out! There were also bits of text that I really liked as well it’s not doom and gloom out here.

Like most workshops WE debated WE Discussed LOADS over the 3 days, about things that give us rage and what we would like to change, revolving around mainly race.  We would leave a session and I think it’s fair to say everyone’s brains were bulging with thoughts of what we had discussed.

Unlike most workshops I’ve done, I usually bring in new scenes during the days to play with new material but this time I didn’t. It was great to interrogate the text and ask questions, exploring it more as it was a new writing style for me as I had written the play by assigning no characters or locations to the lines.

I almost wished we had a camera in the room filming us and you dons could just live stream in but a) that would be kinda creepy B) it wouldn’t be the same. Natalie created such a free raw space everything felt open to bring forward their thoughts and tings.

Before a workshop I usually write a list of things I want to achieve by the end of the days. My main one for this Mixed Brain pt 2 workshop was to leave inspired to make the next draft. I AM SOOOOO exited to re-draft it!!! Let’s hope I don’t make it shit…

We ate Caribbean for lunch like everyday, we were in Brixton so it was live! Then the workshop ended with BEERS and MUNCH, the way life should just end in general. We all sat down and I asked the actors questions like… ‘What scenes would you like to see in this play which I haven’t written?’ ( I’m such a lazy writer hahaha) ‘What characters would you like to see most developed?’ etc, and then we just chatted about life! It was VIBES.

My time at PP has been legit the best year of my life so far!!!!! I am soooooo fucking grateful to have had this incredible opportunity. I’ve done so much. I’ve literally just heard the first draft of my new radio play BILAL’S BIRTHDAY which was recorded in New York – yep NEW YORK!! CRAY CRAY CRAY!!!! A Naked Angels and Paines Plough production, it will be out mid March I’m guessing… I still can’t get over American’s reading my words hahahaha!

PPS. I am going to produce my play NEGRIL BEACH and I’m looking for producers – HOLLA at yo boy!!!!

Big Love

Nathan :)

Taste Tuesday: George’s Blueberry Breakfast Bars

Courtesy of Joint Artistic Director George (and his mini sous chef!), this week’s Taste Tuesday were some totally delicious, brain-boosting blueberry breakfast bars to kick off the day. Here’s the lowdown on how to make your own…



  • 4 tbsp coconut oil (or butter)
  • 3 tbsp honey / date syrup / maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp nut butter
  • 200g / 2.5 cups rolled oats
  • 150g / 1 cup blueberries


First you should preheat your oven to 170c / 340f. While this is heating up, line a baking dish with grease proof paper and then you can start to prep your mixture.

The next step is to melt the coconut oil, honey and nut butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Once melted and combined, stir in the oats and continue to mix until they have all been coated, then fold in the blueberries.

Once everything has combined, transfer the mixture into the baking dish and with the back of a spoon press down and into the sides. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until the sides are just beginning to brown.

Allow the dish to cool before lifting the grease proof paper with the oat mixture onto a cooling rack. Leave to fully cool in the fridge or at room temperature before attempting  to cut the mixture into bars – this mixture made about 16.

And you’re done!



– George x


General Management Workshop

Paines Plough is delighted to invite you to our first General Management workshop.

Here at Paines Plough we are always looking for ways to demystify the way we go about commissioning, producing and touring new plays, in order to provide support for theatre makers at any stage of their careers.

This workshop is a chance for anyone interested in working in the theatre industry as a General Manager, or in Finance and Administration, to find out more about the profession.

The evening will be a discussion and Q&A with members of the theatre community that work in General Management. Full panel list to be confirmed.

The event will take place on Tuesday 29 March, 6.30- 8.30pm in the Paines Plough Rehearsal Room. We are located on 4th Floor, 43 Aldwych, London, WC2B 4DN. There will be drinks and a chance to get to know everyone before and after the workshop.

If this is something you’d be interested in and would like to register for a place, please email Bhavini at with the following information by noon on Friday 11 March:

– Your name.
– Current role and where you work, if applicable.
– A few sentences on why you’d like to attend this workshop.

What’s on the PP Stereo?

AD George has gone away to Australia to revisit the EBT team, but really we think its so that he can go away and learn the lyrics to ‘Hip Hop Hooray’ ready for Hip Hop Karaoke.

‘Look at me, I’m a loser, I’m a winner, I’m good, I’m bad, I’m a sinner, I’m a killer. What am I doing, I’m saying that I’m human’ – Kendrick Lamar

Come To Where I’m From: Otley – Postponed

Bad news folks, unfortunately we’ve had to postpone tonight’s performance of COME TO WHERE I’M FROM: OTLEY due to poor weather conditions.

Many apologies to all who were planning to come along. Wrap up warm, stay safe, we’ll announce a new date soon. Anyone who bought tickets should have been contacted by the venue directly.

Thanks for your understanding.

– Team PP x