6. Playwrights Program

A new program of skills and craft development, exclusively for playwrights. Held at the Seymour Centre’s Sound Lounge, these morning sessions provide playwrights with an opportunity to share, learn and be inspired.

NOTE: Participants must register online for these sessions prior to the event

Click here to download the Playwrights’ Program PDF

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Playwriting Masterclasses

Michael Gow and Joanna Murray-Smith, two legends of Australian theatre, will each teach a masterclass for playwrights sharing their practical expertise and wisdom drawn from a lifetime of celebrated writing for the stage. More info

Michael Gow, writer of Australian classics including Away, Toy Symphony and, most recently, Once in Royal David’s City explores “how to write” texts, from William Archer in the 19th century (and Chekhov’s letters) up to David Edgar and beyond, taking in some film writing and how to write fiction books. He looks at one thing he’s picked up from each and how they might apply to writing in general.

Joanna Murray-Smith’s plays include Honour, The Gift and The Female of the Species. She will lead a masterclass in how to access a real emotional connection with what is being written. Good writing is hard. How do we engage the parts of us we least want to know in order to write with intensity, truth and courage? A broader discussion of what a valuable writing life requires will be interspersed with real-time writing exercises, to be shared and explored in the group.

Friday 13 June

Michael Gow, 9.30 – 11.30am
Cost: $35

Joanna Murray-Smith, 11.30am – 1.30pm
Cost: $35


Places for these two masterclasses are strictly  limited.
Participants will be notified by no later than 8 June

Playwrights’ Open Space

The largest gathering of playwrights we’ve ever held. A series of discussions on things that matter to playwrights, with the agenda entirely decided by the writers present. An opportunity for artists at every stage of their career to share, inspire, provoke and learn as we chart the course for the place of playwriting in our culture now and in the future. More info

Saturday 14 June, 10.00am – 1.00pm
Registration from 9.30am

More info:
Read more about the Open Space Gathering on the PWA Blog



A multi-skilled, multi-layered masterclass in the craft of playwriting, led by five leading playwrights. Our challenge: to share their favourite element of craft – whether it be character building, dramatic structure, or how to write believable cracking dialogue – the how, when and why they do it. Listen, learn, take note(s) and be motivated and inspired beyond your imagination. More info

Presented by Jane Bodie, Mary Rachel Brown, Caleb Lewis, Debra Oswald and Lachlan Philpott 

Sunday 15 June, 11.00am – 1.00pm




All events in the Playwrights’ Program will be held in the
Sound Lounge at the Seymour Centre.


Registered playwrights have access to concession discounts for all National Play Festival tickets.

To register, head to www.pwa.org.au/playwrights 

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