Now not a lot makes me envious as a writer – after all, we’re all our own unique combos of nature and nurture, aren’t we? – but this opportunity described in Literature Wales’s latest newsletter does…
Just 4 lucky elite writers in Welsh will experience this – but, fingers crossed, maybe Literature Wales will give the rest of us an opportunity to hear from these stellar teachers, if just in an online chat.
Lisa Albert, the award-winning writer and producer of hit American TV drama Mad Men, and Jeppe Gjervig Gram, writer and co-creator of the Danish political drama series Borgen, are just two of the names contributing to an innovative Welsh scriptwriting initiative called Y Labordy (The Laboratory).
The year-long initiative, which begins with a residential course being held at Tŷ Newydd in Gwynedd this week, will see four talented Welsh writers given the opportunity to develop their ideas alongside some of the most respected script writers and producers in the industry.
Fflur Dafydd, Bethan Marlow, Jon Gower and Dafydd James will work with Lisa and Jeppe, as well as BAFTA-winning Welsh film director Kieran Evans (Kelly + Victor), acclaimed script editor and producer Angeli MacFarlane (Very Annie Mary), experienced dramaturg Sarah Dickenson and London Screenwriters’ Festival organiser Lucy V Hay on this week’s course, which is the first stage in the year-long Y Labordy scheme.
The aim of Y Labordy is to support and nurture Wales’ script writing talent through equipping four experienced Welsh language script writers with the skills and knowledge required to pitch effectively to international industry commissioners, and hopefully succeed on a high-end international platform. The initiative is funded by Creative Skillset Cymru, S4C, Arts Council of Wales and Ffilm Cymru Wales through their BFI NET.WORK funding programme, and is being delivered by Literature Wales.
The four Welsh writers – Fflur, Bethan, Jon and Dafydd – were chosen to participate in the programme through a highly competitive selection process. They’ve already had an array of credits in TV, film and theatre between them and were selected due to their proven talent in the field and their ambition to showcase their work at an international level.
Y Labordy aims to prepare and support the writers effectively as they try to break through to the highly competitive international TV, film and theatre market. This week’s course at Tŷ Newydd will kickstart the programme, during which the writers will be offered a series of unique international training and development opportunities, including regular bespoke one-to-one mentoring, shadowing and networking opportunities, business skills development and project specific guidance from key industry figures.