How do I apply and any tips on applications?

Applications are currently closed and we aim to re-open in July 2023. The application is an online form which will be available on this page and the questions are listed below.

It’s really helpful for us to get to know people through their application answers, so we’d recommend using up your whole word count /video time limit and answer in as much detail as you can. We appreciate people just being themselves, there’s no need to try to impress us, just be open and honest in your answers about why you want to take part.

You can apply to more than one course if you want to, just submit one application and select the courses you’re interested in, talking through each of them in your answers.

When applications are open, we offer zoom Q&As and Writers’ Lab tasters, hosted by our Labs team, where people can find out more. These will be listed here once confirmed and usually take place in July.

Who should apply to Writers’ Lab?

This is an entry-level programme, designed for people who want support to write their first full length play. Maybe you’re sitting on a story you’ve always wanted to share. Maybe you have a passion for creative writing and want to make something for the stage. Maybe you’re not seeing yourself represented in the theatre you’re reading/seeing.

The course is designed for ages 18+, with no upper age limit.

We aim for the majority of the course to take place in person at Soho Theatre, Dean Street. We are very happy to receive applications from outside of London, for people who are happy to travel to Dean Street for workshops on Tuesday evenings and Saturday daytimes. We’re not looking for any particular ‘experience’, just a passion for writing for live performance and open-ness to collaborate with other people on the programme.

If you have written multiple plays, have had a full production staged, or have received playwriting commissions, this course is probably not the right match for you. Equally, if you will be in full time education over the course period, we recommend you apply once you have completed your formal education, as we find play deadlines land at busy times of year for academic timetables.

Soho Theatre is an equal opportunities organisation, and is using positive action to make sure that the people we work with are representative of our diverse community.

We actively welcome applicants who identify as LGBTQ+, disabled, people of the *global majority and people living in the London Borough of Waltham Forest.

*people who identify as Black Caribbean, Black African, South Asian, East Asian, Middle Eastern or Latinx.

I am having trouble with the application form.

The application form works best from a computer, but you can also complete it on a smartphone or tablet. For the open questions, you can also submit your answer by video, by pasting your Youtube link in the answer box. Please attach the 1-2 page writing extract in either a Word or PDF format.

For other support regarding the application form, please email engagement@sohotheatre.com

Here are the list of questions on the application, in case you’d like to see them in advance:

1-What is your name?

2-What email address can we contact you on?

3- What’s the best phone number to reach you on?

4- Which Lab(s) are you applying for? (multiple choice)

5- If you selected writers lab, please attach 1-2 pages of script sample here, as a Word or PDF doc.

6-What interests you about the course(s) you’re applying for? (300 words, for a text answer, or 3 minute video link)

7- Have you had any connection with Soho Theatre before? For instance, have you seen any of our shows, taken part in any other Labs or taster workshops, or applied to our labs before? (200 words, for a text answer, or 2 minute video link)

8- Have you been involved in creative writing/theatre/comedy/cabaret before? For instance, through studying, performing, or as a hobby? (200 words, for a text answer, or 2 minute video link)

9- If applying for Comedy Lab Plus, we would love to watch 3-5 minutes of your material, please provide a video link below.

10- Do you require a bursary in order to take part in the Lab(s) you are applying to? (Yes/No)

11- If yes, please let us know which bursaries you are eligible for. (multiple choice)

12- If you require a bursary, please let us know a little bit about your circumstances.

13- Where did you hear about Soho Theatre Labs?

As we are a charity, the following questions are to do with equal opportunities data which our funders request.

14- Do you live in London? (Yes/No)

15- If you live in London please let us know which borough you live in. (multiple choice)

16- If you don’t live in London, please let us know which town or City you live in.

17- How do you describe your gender? (multiple choice)

18- How do you describe your sexual orientation? (multiple choice)

19- What will your age be on 1 Oct 2021?

20- Please describe your ethnic origin. (multiple choice)

21- What was the occupation of the main/highest income earner in your household when you were 14? (multiple choice)

22- Do you consider yourself to be disabled?

23- If yes- please let us know how you describe yourself. (multiple choice)

Thank you, you should receive a confirmation email once you have submitted, we aim to respond to all applicants by Fri 23 September, 6pm.

What does the course structure look like?

The course involves 48 writers, who are placed into 3 classes of 16, participants attend one workshop per month. Some months, the workshops involve all 48 writers, meeting on a Saturday daytime. Some months, the workshops are classes of 16 which take place over the first 3 Tuesdays evenings of the month.

Oct- Saturday 22 Oct, daytime
Nov- Tuesday 6.30-9.30pm
Dec- Tuesday 6.30-9.30pm
Jan- Saturday date TBC
Feb- Tuesday 6.30-9.30pm
March- Tuesday 6.30-9.30pm
April- Saturday date TBC
May- Saturday date TBC
June- Saturday date TBC

Writers are placed into either:

Writers’ Lab 1- meeting the first Tuesdays of the month

Writers’ Lab 2- meeting the second Tuesdays of the month

Writers’ Lab 3- meeting the third Tuesdays of the month

Reading and writing homework is set at the end of each workshop and the course is designed for writers to connect with each other outside of the workshops, to get the most out of the programme. We have designed the course to be around 35-40 learning hours, including script feedback sessions.

Do writers submit work and receive script feedback through the Writers’ Lab?

Yes! We pair up writers for a 1-2-1 feedback process with the course leaders or people from our script reading freelance pool. Writers receive three pieces of script feedback, which are designed to be face-to-face sessions. Following the third and final draft, writers have the opportunity to submit the script to the Tony Craze Award.

The process usually looks like this:

January: scene submission

March: first draft submission

May: second draft submission

July: final draft submission to be read for Tony Craze Award 

What are bursaires?

We receive a limited amount of funding to enable people to participate in the programme, if they are unable to pay the full course fee (£150). The bursaries can cover the full cost, or half of the cost of the programme, depending on the circumstances of the person.

If you are unemployed, receiving Universal Credit or other benefits, receive a low income or would like to request a bursary for another reason, please complete the bursary section on the application form. As well as general bursaries which are available to all, we also have a number of sponsored bursaries available:

-Matilda Ibini bursaries for people who identify as disabled

-Alistair Wilkinson bursaries for people from low socioeconomic backgrounds

-JBR bursaries for people who identify as trans or non-binary

How do I send a video Link?

So, in the application form, we’ve indicated the three questions that help us learn a bit about you. You’re welcome to type these out but also, answer via video. If you’d like to go for the video option, simply film yourself answering the questions, stopping between each one. The idea is you have a separate video for each answer. Then upload this onto YouTube (there’s a ‘create’ or + button for web or the app, followed by an ‘upload video’ option), or other video platform. Be sure to set your privacy settings so only those with a link can watch the video and then copy and paste the link as your answer.

How many applications do you usually receive?

In previous years we have received 500-750 applications for writers’ lab, for 48 places.

Can I have some feedback on my application?

As we are a small but mighty team, managing a large volume of applications, unfortunately we are not able to offer feedback. Inevitably, there are brilliant artists and writers we’re not able to offer places to each year, due to the high application volume and limited course spots available.

How will I know you have received my application?

Once you have submitted an application through our online Typeform survey, you will receive an automatic confirmation email from the Typeform website to let you know it has been submitted. You should receive this email on the same day you submit the application. Sometime these emails may end up in junk/spam folders, particularly for Hotmail accounts.

Once I have submitted my application, when will I hear from you?

We aim to respond to all applicants by Fri 23 September, 6pm. We will be in touch with all applicants, whether or not we are able to offer a place on the programme.

I have a question which isn’t covered here, what should I do?

We will be hosting taster workshops on zoom and an open Q&A session through Instagram live, as mentioned below, please do join us if you’d like to take part or ask a question and hear more about Writers’ Lab.

Taster workshops and Q&As July 2022:

Playwriting taster open to all, on zoom

Tue 19 July 6.30-8.30pm

Led by course leader Lakesha Arie-Angelo

 

Playwriting taster for people who identify as LGBTQ+, on zoom

Thu 21 July 6.30-8.30pm

Led by course leader Jules Haworth

 

Playwriting taster for people of the *Global Majority, on zoom

Tue 26 July, 6.30-8.30pm

Led by course leaders Lakesha Arie-Angelo and Sharmila Chauhan

This workshop is designed for people who identify as Black Caribbean, Black African, South Asian, East Asian, Middle Eastern or Latinx.

 

Playwriting taster for people who identify as disabled, on zoom

Wed 27 July, 3-5pm

Led by course leader Jules Haworth

This workshop will be limited to 15 people and have zoom integrated captioning available.

 

Writers’ Lab Q&A open to all, on zoom

Thu 28 July, 12.30-1.30pm

Hosted by course leaders Sharmila Chauhan and Jules Haworth

 

Playwriting taster for people who live, work or study in Waltham Forest, on zoom

Thu 28 July, 6.30-8.30pm

Led by course leader Jules Haworth

 

You can also email any queries to engagement@sohotheatre.com

Confirming participation and refund policy

Once offers are made, participants are able to confirm their place by email and by making their course payment. We do recommend applicants check course dates before applying and make sure they are able to commit to the full course programme, before accepting a place. We are sometimes able to accommodate participants who may miss 1-2 sessions, but participants must be available for the first session. We are not able to offer refunds to participants once payments have been made.

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