2019 WRiTEON Stage Festival

WRiTEON Stage Festival

6 Plays, 3 Venues, 5 Nights

Tue 23 July to Sat 27 July 2019

In 2019 WRiTEON produced its biggest ever project, an entire festival of one-act plays at The ADC Theatre, The Corpus Playroom and the Larkum Studio. Our six tremendous plays are listed below:

Rose’s place was the best home Alan and Kurt ever knew, and years later they return for their foster mother’s funeral. Alan is haunted by scenes from their childhood that he longs to put right. The young never appreciate the consequences of their actions, but whatever happened in the summerhouse, it’s time to face the truth.

Writer Dave Pescod
Director Chris Avery
Producer Julia Bolden
Producer Pam Jenner
Older Kurt Nicholas Frankau
Older Alan Steve Atmore
Young Kurt Nathan Colley

2003- UK oil consultant Ryan Ellis is working in the Balkans. Although miles from the civil unrest (following the collapse of the Yugoslav Federation), Ryan is taking no chances. So when his wife Lidia comes out for a short visit, he hires Masluch, a local bodyguard, to look after her.

Writer Lorraine Forrest-Turner
Director Sean Baker
Producer Julia Bolden
Producer Pam Jenner
Lydia Carla Keen
Ryan Mark Philip Compton
Masluch James Inman

Shelagh is in her thirties. She has everything she could wish for: healthy body, long-term relationship, job with prospects of promotion … But in order to keep up with the competitive world she lives in, she will have to up her game. Is it worth losing yourself so that you can have it all?

Writer Kim Komljanec
Director Andrew Bailey
Producer James Stedman
Shelagh Liz Barker
Liz Trish Peroni
Tom Antony Quinn
Katie Roz Fearon
Rosie Leigh Chambers

Participation of Kim Komljanec kindly supported by the Slovenian Ministry of Culture and Embassy of Slovenia in London.


 “All brains and no blood…well that’s just no good for anyone.”

Emily and Andy said they were soulmates, but the music of their blood broke them apart. How will a chance reunion impact their lives now they’re “all grown up”? A gently comic exploration of friendship, love, sex and meaning.

Writer James Stedman
Director Richard McNally
Producer James Stedman
Emily Tamsin McNally
David Daniel McKeown
Andy Ramon Clarke
Beau Oliver Howarth

John and Claire Cunningham are an average couple: married for years, they’re stuck in a rut, with only experimentation seeming to hold the key to invigoration. Except, those aren’t their real names, and their attempts to inject some much-needed excitement into their lives has led to a crisis of identity from which neither seems able to awaken.  

Writer James P Mannion
Director Alan Hay
Producer Leigh Chambers
Clare Emma Harpley
John Rory Lowrings
Sally Sam Billing
Neil Warren Clark
Policeman Paul Clark

Three Gargoyles, The First, Second and Third, sit static atop three plinths atop a cathedral.  They spend their nights prattling on about priceless nonsense, until one night ‘The First’ is granted the gift of movement. The Offensive explores the case for freedom of expression and satirically navigates the logical rabbit holes of modern day identity politics.

Writer Aga Serugo Lugo
Director Hellen McCallum
Assistant Director Maddie Forrester
Producer Leigh Chambers
First Sandra Birnie
Second Tracy James
Third Rosemary Eason


The Artistic Director of the Festival, Richard McNally, was interviewed about the Festival on Cambridge 105 by Liz Barker. Catch up on the interview by clicking here.


The Shortlist Readings

The six other plays that made the shortlist but were not selected to be staged as part of the Festival were of such an exceptionally high quality that WRiTEON showcased these to audiences as well in the form of script-in-hand staged readings in the Larkum Studio back in April:

Canopy by Rachel Carnes

Canopy explores the sheltering space that people foster over time, as their mutual annoyance creates a kind of protection. When do the things that drive me crazy about you, become the things I would miss most? What if we were so busy caring for our family, we forgot to care for ourselves? What if we live long enough to discover that life’s promises are still ours to fulfill? What if we’re afraid? Where does love go — When we’re separated? And what remains? Canopy is about love — In whatever form that takes — And the patience love requires.

The Way it Is by Donna Hoke

After eight years, Cane dumps his fiancee Yasmine because he thinks he’s found “the one.” But when he heads back to their apartment to collect his things, Yasmine’s not about to let him go without getting what she wants–starting with an explanation about why he wasted her time for so long, and ending with something Cane never expected. In real time, Cane and Yasmine fight for the lives they think they deserve in a taut two-hander about inertia, truth… and consequences.

Headhog by Tom Jensen

Life is fairly humdrum for Malcolm, until a rather prickly problem raises its head and turns his world upside down. He is forced to take drastic action that results in a truly mind-blowing experience.

Member by Hugo Chiarella

‘Member’ takes place entirely in the bedroom of a couple, Jo and Steve. Jo is a PR manager for a ride sharing startup. Steve is tepidly volunteering for a fledgling foundation that wants to transform the democratic process. Jo wants to work and prosper within the system, Steve has lost faith in the system. 

The play is a philosophical and political exploration about the tension between idealism and action. In a time when the world is increasingly divided by totalizing ideological positions, ‘Member; examines the ways in which these positions affect our interactions on an intimate and interpersonal level as well as a societal and global level.

A Mandarin Remembers by David Hutchison

Sir Andrew Drummond is a former civil servant who has had a distinguished career first in the Foreign Office and then elsewhere in government and public life. He is visited by a researcher who is employed by an up-market version of ‘Desert Island Discs’. She is ostensibly there to check on his choices for the programme but she is not all that she seems, and Sir Andrew finds himself having to confront the human consequences of policies for which he had a major responsibility.

With British troops still fighting – and dying – in the Middle East and Afghanistan, this play explores how politicians and civil servants reach decisions which can have fateful, and sometimes catastrophic, consequences.

Participation of Kim Komljanec kindly supported by the Slovenian Ministry of Culture and Embassy of Slovenia in London.

The Contract by Trish Rawson

Two young people rescued from homelessness by a kindly, older and childless woman seems to be the perfect ending to cold nights sleeping rough in a doorway.  But Cynthia, their landlady, proves to be a challenge to live with. Who keeps knocking on the door? And why won’t she answer it?  Insistent on changing the ‘contract’ which she thinks binds them together, Joe and Deborah find their lives much more of a challenge than they could possibly have envisaged.  But living with Cynthia has affected their mental health. Will they manage to escape and if so, how?

Participation of Kim Komljanec kindly supported by the Slovenian Ministry of Culture and Embassy of Slovenia in London.

The Producing Team

The project was artistic directed by Richard McNally supported by a team of producers who worked working diligently to bring this all together: Julia Bolden, Pam Jenner, Leigh Chambers and James Stedman.