Press Pack for theatrical productions

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					WACtheatre (The Writers & Actors Collaboration Theatre Company)

      Official Launch 28 October 2008:

       New Play Season
                       Press Pack

       Welcome to the WAC New Play Season!

The New Play Season
WAC on YouTube
The Plays
WAC Wednesdays

              WAC (Writers & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

WAC was set up in autumn 2007 following a series of events for writers and theatre
practitioners hosted by His Majesty’s Theatre in Aberdeen and the Playwright’s Studio,

We began as a small group of professional actors and writers who wanted to explore
ways of producing new work in Aberdeen and the Shire. WAC has benefited from
continued support from Aberdeen Performing Arts and in particular, their Education
Department. This, together with a successful funding bid through Aberdeen City
Council, enabled the team to fund the New Play Season.

The team responsible for running WAC are Liz Lees, Colin Garrow and Suzy

Suzy trained as an actress in London at Italia Conti, after which she spent several years
acting in Britain and Europe as well as setting up and running London-based
professional fringe theatre company First Draft.

Liz trained as an actress at Guildford. She is a member of the Writers Guild and has
written numerous pieces of theatre both for adults and children. She is also an artist
and runs Greenlight Gallery.

Colin studied Drama at the University of Northumbria and is a writer, facilitator and
musician. He has experience of working with many styles of theatre including puppetry
and multimedia work and has created theatre with young people, adults with learning
disabilities and those with low literacy skills.

WAC owes a huge debt of thanks to everyone who has supported us over the last year,
and we’d particularly like to thank the following, without whom we’d never have made
it this far:

Duncan Hendry, Cate MacPherson, Johanna Duncan, the marketing team at APA,
everyone at HMT and the Lemon Tree, Aberdeen City Council, Chris Mellor, Alexis
Gordon, Phil Thompson and Creative Cultures, the Playwrights Studio, Scotland, Janie
Garvie, Vanessa Chew at Livewire Productions, Marie Shaw, and Caroline Aston at NEAT.

                        WAC (Writers & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

The New Play Season
In Feb 2008 we launched the first WAC New Playwriting Competition for writers living in
Aberdeen and the Shire. We were impressed by the level of interest, especially from
people who had never written for theatre before. We intended to have one overall
winner of the competition, who would then have their play produced. However, half-
way through the judging process we heard about our successful funding bid with
Aberdeen City Council. This provided funds to enable us to produce 13 plays and we
embarked on the creation of what has become known as the New Play Season: 10
weeks of new plays in an exciting partnership production with the Lemon Tree.

All plays are being performed at the Lemon Tree, West North Street, Aberdeen.

Performances Tuesdays & Wednesdays at 7.30pm with Matinees Wednesdays at

Tickets for all shows will be available from the Box Offices at HMT, The Music Hall and
the Lemon Tree and online at (01224) 641122.

WAC on YouTube
WAC will be posting “trailer” type videos of all the plays on our YouTube site the week
before performances. Check them out at:

                        WAC (Writers & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

The Plays
Nov 18/19 New Horizons By Craig Sandeman
                  A dedicated director, a passionate producer and a star to die for – literally!

Craig Sandeman’s misspent childhood enjoying Doris Day movies, gave him a new outlet for his writing when he became
involved in the Auchenblae Drama Group. With a little push from destiny, he was thrust him into the heady world of
musical theatre.

Nov 25/26 Safe House By Tricia Harvey
                  Faced with your biggest fear – what would you do?

Trisha Harvey grew up in Aberdeen and t                                      n.
                                        trained at E15 Acting School in London. After years in the big city, she returned to
Scotland where she writes and produces plays for children. Safe House is the first play she has written for an adult
audience. Trisha’s drama explores the plight of a woman faced with a controlling, bullying husband.

Dec 2/3                      he
                  Clock Oan the Waa’ By Deborah Leslie
                  Lily Milne. Doing time. Guilty of living too long

                                          writer, children's novelist and prize-winning Doric writer. When she's not writing
Deborah Leslie is a published short story wri
                d                                                                                             on
she can be found avoiding housework, walking her dog and dreaming of things past and yet to come. Clock o the Waa’ is
her first play.

                  Abduction of the Innocents By Drew Young
                  They came to find love and...left.

In Abduction of the Innocents, the first of Drew’s two short plays in the New Plays Season, a meeting between a local lad
and a - well, let’s call them an odd couple - leads to a surprising turn-a-round. The relationship between Croydon and
hamsters is explored and resolved, albeit to nono-one’s satisfaction.

                  2001 (Almost) By Drew Young
                  Rage, rage against the machine. (Or at least get a bit grumpy).

The second of Drew’s short plays, 2001 (Almost), sees two friends present the history of their relationship with a new
computer. Featuring a brief exposition about the life of Rene Descartes, the play offers education as well as a romp through
the pitfalls of the computer age.

Dec 9/10          Birdhouse By Catriona Yule
                  Mother...teacher...son. What do you do when your house falls down?

                                       t                                     atre
Catriona Yule is a published poet, short story writer and playwright. Her theatre work includes Two Seconds (performed in
                                   g                                         ls,
May 2008 at Woodend Barn during the Wordfringe festival) and Kitten Heels, which received a rehearsed reading at

                                  WAC (Write & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

                                   ouse                                d
Aberdeen Arts Centre in 2005. Birdhouse grew out of a short story called Cuckoo written in 2005 while Catriona was
working as a supply teacher with pupils who had experienced emotional and behavioural problems.

Dec 16/17 WLTM By Gavin Cunningham
                  Nice guys do naughty things.

Gavin Cunningham’s first play follows the fortunes of three hapless souls - Wullie, Mario, and Big Sean - on a night out.
                                                                                                       night-time city life. Join
Seeking love and a taste for adventure, the trio soon find themselves in the dark, seedy underbelly of night
                        ey                                                           r         speed-dating before ending up
these three eejits as they dodge the local psychopath, swoon the lassies and try their hand at speed
in a dodgy massage parlour!

Jan 13/14         Agent 160 By Charles Barron
                  Secret agent. Writer of bawdy plays. Lover of a black slave.

Charles Barron began writing for theatre with a production in 1956 while he was at University. Since then he has had more
than100 plays staged by companies ranging from Children’s Theatre to Pitlochry Festival Theatre
Agent 160 is about Aphra Behn, the first female professional playwright. Intriguingly, she also worked as a spy in the service
of King Charles II.

Jan 20/21         Chanceshot By Gráinne Smith
                  The Bonnie Lassie sailed in a gale. But who did she bring back?

                                            can’t                           lays
Gráinne Smith says she writes because she ca stop…fiction, non-fiction, plays and poetry. Whatever she writes about,
                                ng                                                 knitted
whether prose or poetry, according to a friend she ‘always has a story up her hand-knitted sleeve’. For more information on
what keeps Gráinne out of mischief, check out her website:

With the family boat tied up to comply with fishing quotas, fisherman Danny attempts to make extra money with a
‘chanceshot’ - a trip on a boat other than his usual berth. However, when the skipper ignores a very bad forecast, the boat
sails into mountainous seas…

Jan 27/28         Oraculum By Johnny Keating
                  Two men. A rose. A nightingale. And maybe...a woman?

                      rt                                    ,
Johnny Keating’s short play is a witty comedy, set somewhere, sometime, with some people, and explores several
possibilities. Or does it?

“Heard a story. About a rose and a bird. Nightingale, I think it was. Made me think...”

                  At Home with the Smiths By Iain Mitchell
                              warrior...old                                         Earth.
         lady. A story of life, death and Mother Earth

              l                                                                             member of the Livingston Players,
Iain Mitchell began writing in 1995. While living and working in the Central Belt, he was a mem
performing in several musical productions. His first play Last on the Block was performed as part of the Aberdeen One Act
Festival three years ago. At Home with the Smiths is a comedy concerning two strangers who break into a house, only to
find all is not what it seems. Who are they? What do th want? And will they survive the night?

                                   WAC (Write & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

Feb 3/4                   Grave Concerns By Russell Adams
                 Buried with dignity. Dug up without it!

Retired Head Teacher Russell Adams has set his archaeological comedy on a stone age burial site, where the Part-Time
Team arrive to begin rehearsals for their TV show with a bit of excavating. But things get out of hand when an ancient
medallion is unearthed...

Feb 10/11                 The Body in the Bag By Colin Garrow
                 Darkly comic tale of death, drinking and deceit – with songs!

Colin Garrow was born in Newcastle and studied Drama at Northumbria University. Previous plays include Shadowsong
(Headway Theatre, 1997/8) and Oh What a Lovely Wardrobe (Frightened Horse, 1998). He is a founder member of WAC.

Edinburgh, 1827. In their shabby lodging house, William Hare encourages his drinking partner William Burke to think about
the future, about an easier way of making a living. When one of Hare’s lodgers dies, the scheming duo plan to take the
body to the medical school where corrupt surgeon Dr Knox exchanges cash for cadavers...

WAC will be casting and producing the New Play Season entirely from the directory that
we create through our website, so we want to hear from anyone who has ever acted,
directed, or thought about being involved in theatre. We are producing the plays to a
professional standard; although this does not necessarily mean cast and crew have to
be trained, as we recognise that natural talent, experience and dedication can produce
something better than all the training money can buy.

WAC would like to hear from actors, directors, stage crew, lighting and sound designers,
set designers, general arty people and anyone else who would like to be involved in any

At WAC we want to help people develop new skills, so lack of experience in a particular
area does not prevent anyone from applying. We will place individuals in a team with
experienced actors and theatre practitioners, so they can learn as they work.

WAC Wednesdays
WAC meets every week to read new plays, which are read by the actors in the group.
This gives writers a chance to hear their work read aloud and to see if it 'works'. We
then discuss the play and explore how it could be taken forward, staged and produced.
The writer also has a chance to ask any questions they have (What do you think of this
character / scene / setting / style etc?) and the group can give their opinions. These
meetings also give actors a chance to develop their sight reading skills and to become
involved in any new productions right from the outset.

                                 WAC (Writers & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

WAC Wednesdays are held every Wednesday at His Majesty’s Theatre from 7.00pm –
9.00pm (meet at Stage Door) and new writers are always welcome. Dates and times
may change during the New Play Season, so please contact us for details.

The WAC Team
Phone:        0785 054 6889

The Writers
Craig Sandeman (New Horizons)

Russell Adams (Grave Concerns)

Johnny Keating (Oraculum)

Drew Young (Abduction of the Innocents / 2001 Almost)

Gavin Cunningham (WLTM)

Iain Mitchell (At Home with the Smiths)

Trisha Harvey (Safe House)

Gráinne Smith (Chanceshot)

Charles Barron (Agent 160)

Deborah Leslie (Clock oan the Waa’)

                         WAC (Writers & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

Catriona Yule (Birdhouse)

Colin Garrow (The Body in the Bag)

Ticket Info:
                              His                ,
Available from Box Offices at H Majesty’s Theatre, The Music Hall and the Lemon Tree
and online at (01224) 641122.

                            WAC (Write & Actors Collaboration) Press Launch 2008

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