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Beyond COVID-19: A future of living creatively

On Tuesday 18 August, we hosted a Playwrights' Gathering to address the creative possibilities for theatre beyond COVID-19.

The aim of the Gathering was to look at how playwrights can respond creatively to this 'new normal' and how might it influence the writing of new plays. As theatres slowly begin to reopen with public health measures in place, including restricted numbers and physical distancing, there will be an urgent need to explore alternative models of production, for example, outdoor performances and site-specific work, as well as hybrid theatre and digital projects.

Facilitated by playwright and theatre-maker Davey Anderson, the attendees collectively discussed questions such as:

  • How can we tailor our plays for a physically distanced cast and audience? 
  • How can we create new plays for digital platforms as well as live performance? 
  • How can we connect with audiences in real life but outside of traditional venues? 


We heard from theatre-makers in Scotland and internationally who have explored these ways of working, to inspire us to think outside the studio theatre box and come up with creative responses to the practical challenges posed to the performing arts by the pandemic.

The speakers were:

  • Gordon Barr (Artistic Director, Bard in the Botanics)
  • David Greig(playwright, Artistic Director, Royal Lyceum Edinburgh)
  • Becky Minto (stage designer, and Freelance Task Force)
  • Adura Onashile(playwright)
  • Adrienne Wong(playwright, Canada)


The event sold out, with 78 playwrights attending on the day, from across Scotland and at every career stage. If you were unable to attend and would like to know what was discussed in detail, please see the
 transcript of the event.

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