All the meetings below take place in the Macready Room at the Bristol Old Vic — ask at the bar on the first floor for directions. £1 entrance fee.

Tuesday, 18 November at 7.30pm: Meet Simon Reade
Simon Reade is Joint Artistic Director of the Bristol Old Vic. He was Literary Manager and Dramaturg at the Royal Shakespeare Company 1997-2001 where his adaptations included Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children and Ted Hughes’ Tales from Ovid. For BOV, he has adapted Jill Tomlinson’s The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark. Simon will be discussing new work at the Bristol Old Vic under the new artistic vision, and answering any questions you may have.

Tuesday, 25 November at 7.30pm: Air Guitar by Pete Kesterton
This is a rewrite of Pete’s Eat Your Cake and Have It following comments by group members that one of the female characters did not fit into the style of the piece. When Mike pays a visit on his estranged brother Ed, he is frustrated by Ed’s seeming reluctance to invite him into his caravan. Is Ed just being an obstinate eccentric, or is there a more sinister explanation?

Tuesday, 2 December at 7.30pm: Chrome Spaghetti by Jeremy Risdon
It is the year 3000, and a naive young man gets more than he bargained for when he tries to escape his miserable life and finds himself serving in a fried chicken shop on the Moon…

Tuesday, 9 December at 8.00pm: Christmas Drinks!
Join us in Renato’s to discuss how we’re all going to hit the big time next year…


Doctors distinction

Ray Brooking has achieved the unique distinction of being the first writer to be commissioned to write a 75-minute episode for Doctors. Titled Say a Little Prayer, this will go out in a couple of weeks time, on 14 November — not to be missed! Many congratulations to Ray for this. Ray also has four more commissioned 30-minute episodes in the pipeline, awaiting broadcast.


Baby Bank in Cheltenham

Shiona Morton’s play Baby Bank — which was read in the group about a year ago — is to be produced by the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham, in the Studio, from 27 to 31 January. Following the reading in the group, Shiona made some major changes to the script based on members’ comments, and then approached South West Arts for help in getting a rehearsed reading for it. They suggested she should apply for a Kicking Off grant, and she was subsequently awarded one of these earlier this year. Armed with this money, Shiona began to look for a company to perform the rehearsed reading and sent the script to the Everyman Theatre among others. However, Sue Colverd, producer at the Everyman, liked the play so much that she decided to give it a full production! So many congratulations to Shiona. We hope to arrange a group visit to see the play — more details in January.


Life Begins in the New Year

Ex-President Mike Bullen’s new TV series Life Begins, starring Caroline Quentin, goes out early in the New Year. It’s about Maggie Thornhill, a woman whose husband walks out on her when she thought she had life sorted and could look five, ten years hence and know where she’d be, Maggie discovers she’s back to square one ’ no love life, no money and no job (she’s spent the last 12 years bringing up the children). Worse, she realises that she’s allowed herself to become identified by those around her as a wife and mother and has lost sight of who she is herself. The series charts the ups and downs of her attempts to get back on top of things. It’s a drama, with humour.


TW and BOV shows

Please keep supporting Theatre West’s excellent series of new plays at the Alma Tavern and also BOV’s newplayfest so you can tell Simon Reade what you think of it on 18 November.

Theatre West — 2003