Player Playwrights

Player Playwrights returns with its Autumn Season of new play readings and events:

7.30pm, Monday 19 September    Upstairs@North London Tavern   - DOUBLE BILL:  Awaken the Dead and The Story of Fires and Floods 

AWAKEN THE DEAD by Robert Royston

An elderly couple with unsound memory prepare for what they hope will be a legendary dinner party. They and their guests will reboot their energy for one last laugh and, through celebration, raise the spirit of their generation for posterity. In another part of the house the illegitimate son of one of them - neither can quite remember who he is - concocts Armageddon.


Robert Royston is a former South African journalist.  He edited Black Poets in South Africa for Heinemann's African Writers series. His first play The Struggle had a one month run at the Gate Theatre.  His second, Home Time was shortlisted for the Verity Bargate award.


A 17 minute dramatised talk which tells the history of SPID Theatre's council estate refurbishment five years after Grenfell.

Helena Thompson is the artistic director of SPID Theatre, which makes art that advocates housing justice. She has had five plays published including The Burning Tower, performed on estates nationwide.

PLEASE NOTE: During lockdown and post lockdowns Player Playwright went partially online. For this new season we are still holding some evenings on line, but all of our new play readings will take place in person Upstairs@NorthLondon Tavern. 

We made this decision after discussions with our authors who, overwhelmingly, told us that they value the in-person feedback of a live audience.



When Player Playwrights was founded in 1948 its aim was laid down as follows:

“To encourage the writing of plays by its members, by providing an opportunity for such plays to be presented and criticized by the Society; to widen the knowledge of all aspects of playwriting, by inviting to its meetings Speakers and Lecturers; to explore all avenues whereby members’ work may be presented to the public.”

Player Playwrights, which is still run by its actor and playwright members, continues to bring together professional actors and writers with weekly play readings, actor and writer workshops, plus guest speaker events for its members.  

Join US

We are always open to new Members. You could be an experienced or an aspiring playwright. You might be an actor excited about working with new writers and on new plays. Or maybe you’re just someone who loves theatre and gets excited being among the first to see new work. You're all very welcome.

We have had to curtail our usual Monday night performances at the North London Tavern but we are still showcasing new  plays every Monday night - online. You can join us  every Monday for a simple one off annual membership fee.

Our annual membership fee at £15 for new members. Renewal of the fee after that is just £10 a year. As a member every Monday you will receive a zoom link so you can watch the play, and then join in the conversation about the work with the writer and other members afterwards.

Just as importantly you can put your own work forward for one of our play reading evenings, and have your work mentored by one of our experienced readers; you can become part of the rota of professional actors we need to stage  our play readings; you can enter our regular play contest nights.

For more details on becoming a member contact Tony Diggle on

Meet the team


Laurence Marks & Maurice Gran

Bafta-winning writers of numerous ITV and BBC series' including Birds of A Feather, Goodnight Sweetheart and The New Statesman. Theatre Includes Save The Last Dance For Me, Dreamboats and Petticoats and Love Me Do.  Marks & Gran were crowned 'Living Legends' by The Comedy Society in September 2015.

"In 1973 we had the good fortune to stumble upon Player Playwrights. Over the subsequent months, in a semi–derelict theatre in Fitzroy Square, we were exposed to short plays, long plays, good plays and bad plays, written and performed by members of the club, professional and amateur.

Although by then Laurence was a journalist, and Maurice was selling the occasional short story to top shelf magazines, neither of us even fantasised about a career as a playwright, although we were both enthusiastic fans of radio and television comedy. But after a few months hearing other members’ scripts, we decided separately to take the plunge, and enter the regular sketch–writing competition."

send us your scripts

At its heart Player Playwright is a collective of writers and actors who are supportive of each others work.


We schedule readings of new works, drama and comedy, created by our Members. The work is then critiqued by fellow Members. The aim of our criticism is always to guide and aid the writer to improve their work.


Many plays that get their first outing at Player Playwrights go on to full professional productions on the London stage, often with actors from Player Playwrights appearing in them.


To find out more about how Members can put their work forward for a reading click here 

coming events

All events  scheduled via Zoom or in person at North London Tavern every Monday, 7.30pm


Our Autumn 2022 schedule of new play readings, contests and events

Monday 19 September     Upstairs@North London Tavern  

DOUBLE BILL:  Awaken the Dead by Helena Thompson and The Story of Fires and Floods  by  Robert Royston 
Monday 26 September    Upstairs@North London Tavern    Revolution(s)  by  Ezra Elia    One hour radio or stage play
Monday 3 October          Upstairs@North London Tavern    Player Playwrights Committee        Meeting
Monday 10 October        Upstairs@North London Tavern    Amoral Play  by  Chris Salt    1 hr 50 stage play
Monday 17 October        Upstairs@North London Tavern    The Railway King by Matthew Partridge    1 hr 20 
Monday 24 October        Upstairs@North London Tavern    I can’t live with a man called Hilary    

                                                                                                by Sophie Monjoie & Paul Ham    
Monday 31 October        Upstairs@North London Tavern    Harry and Rose by Francis Beckett    
Monday 7 November      Upstairs@North London Tavern    Lysenko Lives  by Rodney Clark    80 minute stage play
Monday 14 November    On Zoom                                        Short Play Competition for members        Entry details to follow
Monday 21 November    On Zoom                                        Steve Harper : Talk by Literary Manager, Theatre 503
Monday 28 November    On Zoom                                        Player Playwrights AGM        
Monday 5 December       NLT                                                Xmas party      

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Player Playwrights meet 7.30pm Mondays

North London Tavern              Plus online live events

375 Kilburn High Road