Immediate, keen feedback from an audience with a pulse - Paul G Raymond, In Cahoots

New Writing Night

What's It All About?

On the last Wednesday of every other month, Blackshaw hosts a New Writing Night at The Horse and Stables in Lambeth. It's an opportunity for writers to showcase what they're working on and get constructive feedback from the audience.

Get involved

Blackshaw's Showcase

Have you got a half-finished play lurking on your desktop that you’ve always wanted to see finished and staged? Maybe you’ve got something that’s a full first draft but you feel like it still needs some work? Or, maybe you’ve got a great idea for a play that you’ve never got started?

Blackshaw are here to help.. We’re looking for a writer with a play that still needs some work, to be staged as winner of Blackshaw’s Showcase Award. We want to support you through the development process of your play, help you to get the script performance ready, and then produce it as a one-off premiere performance in January 2017.

So how do you get involved?

Submit a 10-15 minute section of your play, by 11th March 2016, ready to be performed as a work in progress at a special New Writing Night on 30th March 2016. The shortlisted pieces will be assigned actors and a director (unless you want to provide your own), who you will work with in the lead up to the New Writing Night.

On 30th March, your piece will be performed, and will receive feedback from the audience (we collect audio feedback, and anonymous written feedback straight after each piece is performed). Following this performance, we will select one piece to take forward to full production.

For the writer awarded the showcase, Blackshaw will be there every step of the way to give you feedback, put you in touch with other writers, and bring your script to the stage. You’ll have the opportunity to get feedback on sections of your draft, at our regular New Writing Nights (May, July, September, November 2016). We’ll also collect audience feedback at the Jan 2017 premiere of your play, to further enable you to continue developing it after its first full performance.

Your submission should be an extract from a new play (or new play in progress), never performed before. It should require a max. of 4 actors, and run at no more than 15 mins.

You can see previous award winners here.

Apply Download Showcase FAQs

How to submit

Submit as a Writer

If you would like to submit a piece of new writing, whether it be a play extract, poem(s), comedy or other, please send a completed submission form, including a contact number and email and copy of your piece to

As a guide, we aim to include 3/4 pieces per event, to total a running time of 1 hour. Please note that tech at The Horse is very limited; only a general wash (lights up/down), and plot-propelling sound effects are available.

Please also note that we are less likely to select pieces with more than 4 characters, as the more cast members there are, the more difficult the rehearsal process becomes, as we have limited rehearsal time before each New Writing Night.

Download standard Submission Form

Download Showcase Submission Form

Apply as an Actor

All actors are asked to submit via Casting Call Pro.


Apply as a Director

If you would like to be considered as a director for one of our new writing night pieces, please send a CV (including a contact number and email) to:

2016 New Writing Nights

March Showcase NWN

Weds 30th at 7:30 p.m
submission deadline: 11th March.


Date TBC.
Submission deadline: 29th April.

July NWN

Weds 27th at 7:30 p.m
Submission deadline: 8th July.

September NWN

Weds 28th at 7:30 p.m
Submission deadline: 9th September.

November Scare Slam

Weds 30th at 7:30 p.m
Submission deadline: 11th November

Getting There

Our New Writing Nights take place upstairs at The Horse & Stables (Closest tube, Lambeth North).

The evening kicks off at 7:30pm and tickets are available on the door. Seating is limited, so pop along early for a drink and be the first in the queue when the doors open.

Directions and contact information for The Horse can be found on their website:


"By making it so easy for the audience to respond...Blackshaw are ensuring that the night is useful as well as entertaining."
- What's Peen Seen, Nov 2012
"Being in a safe environment where the audience can feedback straight away is fruitful for a writer - it's what your job as a playwright is all about. I highly recommend being involved with Blackshaw New Writing Nights, their dedication is infectious."
- Katie McCullough
"The chance to see an extract from my work performed (in such a friendly, fun environment) was invaluable... the whole experience was essential before the work went on to full production."
- Duncan Hands
"I'd still be an unproduced playwright without Blackshaw's New Writing Nights. In fact, I might not even be a (finished) playwright at all - but the reactions of the audience on the night gave me confidence that the piece was worth pursuing."
- M. J. Starling
"Blackshaw offers a friendly and supportive atmosphere with which to showcase new work. The almost immediate feedback is useful and, more importantly, honest."
- The Dead Pony Society
"Blackshaw's well attended New Writing Nights are hugely beneficial for writers. Immediate, keen feedback from an audience with a pulse is a wonderful and rare thing on the open mic circuit, and Blackshaw's well organised, professional, and varied night provides."
- Paul G Raymond, In Cahoots
"They're always well organised and fun, and receiving audience feedback so soon after your performance is incredibly useful, as well as exciting!"
- Catherine Madden
"I've found the feedback from the New Writing Nights incredibly helpful. I remember being rather nervous on receiving my first batch... it was all useful, positive and constructive. If you're a writer looking for feedback then I can't recommend these events enough!"
- Chris Buxey