FEATURE: Nicola Cameron on Wasters | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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The Writers’ ARCADE is a group of emerging playwrights who meet regularly to discuss their work, share experiences and develop their skills. They have recently been awarded a grant from Arts Council England to support a ten month professional development programme.  As part of this, each writer will create a brand new one hour script that will be given a rehearsed reading at ARC. 

Writers ARCADE Rehearsed Readings will take place every Wednesday from 6 May – 24 June 2015. In this new series, we’ve asked the members of the Writers’ ARCADE to tell us more about their experiences of being involved in the group, the works they’re presenting and their hopes for the future. This time, Nicola Cameron talks about her work Wasters. Words: Nicola Cameron.

Until recently I never really ‘got’ plays. Or theatre. I studied Creative Writing at Teesside Uni with every intention of writing comic books, because I liked the idea of telling a story with more than just words. Whilst there I took a playwrighting module, and I’ve written plays ever since. After graduating I took part in the New Playwrights’ Laboratory, led by Andy Willoughby, and my play was shown as part of the Short Sharp Theatre Festival. Writers’ ARCADE was formed soon after that, and led to me having work performed at ARC, Custom’s House, Jabberwocky Festival and Alphabetti Theatre.

Wasters is my first full length play. It’s about a girl with a physical disability who finds solace in an online game world, because she feels like a misfit in the real world. I think it’s a feeling everyone has at various points in their lives, and we all find different ways to deal with that and find our own space in the world. I was also interested in looking at the validity of online interaction, and how different generations perceive the credibility of online socialisation. One of the most interesting things about writing about the online world is that people aren’t always who they say they are. It’s almost like a modern masquerade ball – which is really fun to write.

One of the most interesting things about writing about the online world is that people aren’t always who they say they are

I aim to write theatre that’s fun and engaging and full of energy, and I think Wasters covers all of those things. The play was written under the mentorship of Fin Kennedy, artistic director of Tamasha, for whose feedback and patience I’m incredibly grateful. The Writer’s ARCADE scheme has taught me so much about writing that I can’t imagine not working in theatre now. It’s opened a door and invited me into a world that I now feel I belong in.

Finally, I think I ‘get’ it.

Wasters is performed at Stockton’s Arc on Wednesday 20th May.

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