TalkFest at the Tron

TalkFest at the Tron 2014

Monday 31 March to Saturday 5 April 2014
Tron Theatre, Glasgow


TalkFest at the Tron was a week of workshops, rehearsed and unrehearsed readings and masterclasses expertly led by Scotland's leading playwrights and theatre-makers. 

The Readings

Le Cle Image

La Clé by Lesley Hart, directed by Alison Peebles
Tuesday 1 April, 7.45pm.
Performed by Alison Peebles and Elexi Walker.

Two women, worlds apart but locked together - by secrets, by sex, by handcuffs, whips and bondage straps - struggle to break free of each other. If each had their way, the other wouldn't exist. They certainly wouldn't want to meet like this...

I had hoped for... I fantasised a handshake - a good firm grip. And a smile. I had pictured a smile. You're not smiling, are you? 

When their two worlds collide - twice, ten years apart - everything they think and feel and want changes forever. But at what cost?

Lesley Hart was a New Playwrights Award recipient in 2011. Lesley Hart is an actor as well as a playwright.

Close Encounters - 5 Billion Years by Jim Bay and The Bedding Tunes by Nuala O'Sullivan
Tuesday 1 April, 8.30pm.
Performed by Johnny Austin, George Docherty, Janette Foggo and Helen McAlpine.

Peter Arnott and a team of actors will encounter two new plays by Jim Bay and Nuala O'Sullivan in a live experiment. During the day, the actors immediate first responses to the unseen texts as they unfold will be used to find each play's strengths and weaknesses. Peter will then compile extracts from both plays to be presented on the same night, bringing the audience into this close encounter with new writing.



Descent by Linda Duncan McLaughlin, directed by Allie Butler
Wednesday 2 April, 8pm.
Performed by Elaine C Smith, Barrie Hunter, Kirstin McLean.

What makes you 'you'? Your thoughts, your loves, your experiences, your memories? What happens, then, if you begin to lose them...? Descent is about one couple's struggle to hold on to each other in the face of the terrible force of dementia. Can love survive?

Linda Duncan McLaughlin was a New Playwrights Award recipient in 2013. Linda is based in Glasgow and has been an actor for 20 years.

Rachels House


Rachel's House written and directed by Nicola McCartney
Thursday 3 April, 7.45pm.
Performed by Paul Cunningham, Mary Gapinski, Jenny Hulse, Anne Lacey, Louise Ludgate, Helen McAlpine, Adura Onashile.

A work-in-progress based on the true stories of eight women leaving the US criminal justice system. Over the past three years Scottish playwright Nicola McCartney spent time working with the women of Rachel's House, a remarkable recovery community in Columbus, Ohio, which serves women leaving prison. It has an 86% success rate of non-recidivism. She heard their stories and followed their battles with addiction and despair. Not everyone made it. There will be a Q&A after the reading. You can find out more about Rachel's House and their work here.

Nicola McCartney, originally from Belfast, is an award-winning writer and director, based in Scotland.

Sin Eaters

The Sin Eaters by Ronan O'Donnell, directed by Michael Emans
Friday 4 April, 7.45pm.
Performers include Iain Robertson, Stewart Porter, Anne Lacey, Kirsty Mackay, Jimmy Chisholm, James Mackenzie. 

The Scottish Gothic is awakened in this haunting tale of religious fundamentalism and sexual mania. Set during the Covenanter uprising of 1679, fanatic, Silas Johnston, tormented by lust for his servant lass seeks out martyrdom. Meanwhile a dead heretic posts 'instructions' to schoolmaster Gabriel Riddell who is seduced by ideas of escape.

Ronan O'Donnell is a playwright based in Scotland whose work has been staged by the Traverse Theatre, LLT and Arches/Theatre of Imagination, amongst others.

Mother Courage


Mother Courage translated by Tom Leonard, directed by Tam Dean Burn
Saturday 5 April, 7.45pm.
Performed by Anne-Marie Adriansen, Gary Lewis, Camille Marmie, Paul McCole, Aly McCrae, Davey McKay, Anita Vettesse, Benny Young.

Mother Courage by Bertolt Brecht is the great anti-war play of the twentieth century. In Tom Leonard's new translation a Glasgow mother follows the war that never ends with her multinational family in tow. In partnership with AyeWrite! Tom Leonard is a Scottish poet, writer and critic.


The Workshops

Stage to Page
Guest: Fiona Sturgeon Shea (Creative Director of Playwrights' Studio, Scotland)
Monday 31 March, 6.30 - 10pm.

Stage to Page is a voluntary collective of writers, directors and actors who meet monthly to conduct short public workshops of scenes from brand new plays. This lively exploration of new writing is an opportunity for writers to be actively involved in an exciting, short workshop process, hear their work being read and get feedback from directors, actors and audiences. Find out about submission guidelines or come along on the night to join in or just observe the process from page to stage!

Script Surgeries
Script Surgeries
Thursday 3 April, 3 - 5pm.

Written a play and looking for some advice on how to take it to the next draft? The script surgeries will be half hour, one-to-one sessions with George Aza-Selinger (Literary Manager at National Theatre of Scotland), Isabel Wright (playwright) and Frances Poet (playwright and dramaturg).

David Harrower Masterclass
Here and Now: Where a play begins with David Harrower
Friday 4 April, 5pm. Places available through prior application only. Tickets £3.

Join award-winning playwright, David Harrower (Blackbird, Knives in Hens, Ciara) to explore where a play begins. David Harrower is one of Playwrights' Studio's Associate Playwrights.

David Harrower lives and writes in Glasgow.

Douglas Maxwell
A Playwright's Guide to Timewasting with Douglas Maxwell
Saturday 5 April, 12pm.

Douglas Maxwell  (Decky Does A Bronco, A Respectable Widow Takes To Vulgarity, Promises Promises) shares his process of selecting, developing and selling the right idea - and some survival techniques for when it becomes clear that you're wasting your time on the wrong one. An inspirational lecture that gets you away from your desk for about two hours.

Douglas Maxwell is a playwright currently based in Glasgow and his plays have been performed around the world.

Oliver Emanuel
Playwright (etc.) with Oliver Emanuel
Saturday 5 April, 2.30pm.

Join playwright, dramaturg and adapter, Oliver Emanuel (The Adventures of Robin Hood, Dragon, Titus), for a practical workshop on where ideas come from and how to balance the different roles inherent within the catch-all title of 'playwright' in the 21st Century.

Oliver Emanuel is a playwright who also writes for radio.

Clare Duffy
The Value of the Local: writing for a specific theatre with Clare Duffy
Saturday 5 April, 2.30pm.

This masterclass with award-winning playwright, Clare Duffy (Money: The Game Show, Crossings, ANA) will explore writing theatre-specific drama. Writers will then be contacted by Playwrights' Studio prior to the workshop.

Clare Duffy is a playwright and director. She is currently Associate Playwright at Playwrights' Studio, Scotland and Artist In Residence at Summerhall Arts Centre in Edinburgh.

TalkFest is Playwrights' Studio's professional and public workshop programme. TalkFest takes place at the Edinburgh Festival (at the Traverse and Fringe Central) and at various locations throughout the year. It includes script development workshops, readings, skills' workshops and masterclasses with Scotland's leading playwrights and theatre-makers.

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