Work as if you live in the early days of a better nation

Recommending: Growing your own vegetables


Snow in Helsinki

Continuing my tour in Scandi land.

This was what Helsinki was like.

I didn’t eat bear stew.

But the reindeer steak would have fooled me.



Not my photo but my trip looked like it.

The landscape was incredibly dramatic. Bright white snow. Clear water brimming with floating ice. Buildings rising from the whiteness.

The money from the oil trying to find its way back into the economy. Reclaiming land. Lots of subsidy for the arts, I believe.

Norwegians don’t find London that expensive and that’s not too many countries which find that.

Why playwrights get frustrated: money

Just back from Hols but only seem to be passing through London before more travelling over the next 3 weeks.

I seem to have missed a lot of London theatre and the debating.

Have caught sight of this by Fin Kennedy, who argues:

Today’s playwrights are a motivated, opinionated, highly intelligent, politically aware group of angry young men and women. It’s not that we don’t want to write big, demanding plays. It’s that we’re so often frustrated in our ambitions. And why? One reason comes up time and again: money.

“How do theatre directors expect playwrights to take risks when they’re not part of the infrastructure?” asks Jonathan Meth of the support group Writernet. “The reality of their working lives is not part of the risk debate. A playwright would have to write between four and six plays a year to earn what an artistic director earns. Playwrights are taking risks just by writing for the stage.”

And then the response on the GU blogs have started a good debate off.

I’ve got lots of writing and other deadlines to hit soon, so am not as yet contributing to the debate but would love to hear more people’s thoughts.


Am off on holiday. So you will probably not be hearing from me until end of March. May catch some theatre or a shadow play in Malaysia and Singapore but more likely just to be eating and resting!

Robert Mckee

This Guardian interview/article claims

“Robert McKee, it is probably fair to say, is the most influential storytelling theorist since Aristotle. Graduates of his seminar have gathered at least 26 Academy awards and 94 nominations.”

His book is a good modern reworking of Aristotle’s poetics so is worth a read on craft but I didn’t know he was supposedly that influential…

“For all McKee’s influence, however, over thousands of writers, has he ever been thanked in an Oscar speech? “They say, ‘When I win the Oscar I’m going to get up and thank you’.” He sighs. “And then they win the Oscar and they get up and thank their mother.”"

Albee, Singapore Theatre

Still suffering with this damn cold, but am off on holiday soon, so that’s good.

Recently been reading, an interview with Edward Albee in the Indy turns out he is viewed as the greatest living US playwright. Some have compared Three Tall Women to Yellow Gentlemen. I like Albee’s quote:

Albee was asked if he wrote like Williams or Beckett. He replied: “Neither. Both. I write like me.”

I’ve also discovered there’s some theatre in Singapore and maybe maybe I will get Yellow Gentlemen performed in Singapore.

I’ve written to a few of these companies:

Singapore Rep Theatre
Theatre Practice
Drama Box
Necessary Stage
Teater Ekamatra
Wild Rice
The Finger Players
Action Theatre
Theatre Works

A couple of replies wanting to read the play but some emails have just disappeared in to the ether.

So, if you know of anyone or you are involved in Singapore Theatre and come across this – please get in touch.

I think I will also give US theatres a go, but I think that could be quite a big project…

  • About me

    I'm a playwright and investment analyst. I have a broad range of interests: food, gardening, innovation & intellectual property, sustainability, architecture & design, writing and the arts. I sit on the board of Talawa Theatre Company and advise a CIS investment trust on socially responsible investments.

  • Recent Work

    Recent plays include, for theatre: Nakamitsu, Yellow Gentlemen, Lost in Peru, Lemon Love. For radio: Places in Between (R4), Patent Breaking Life Saving (WS).

  • Nakamitsu

  • Yellow Gentlemen