The script submissions window is currently closed. It will reopen in December 2018.

The Bush Theatre is committed to discovering the best new plays from playwrights who may be unknown to us and therefore seek unsolicited submissions from playwrights in dedicated script windows. We are proud to be a champion of playwrights with a keen interest in those voices not often heard and reflecting the contemporary culture of our city, the UK and beyond. We receive nearly 2000 scripts a year from new and established playwrights all of which are read and considered for production or development here at the Bush.

If you are a playwright, are not currently represented by an agent, and have a play to share with us, then the Playwriting Department is your introduction to the Bush Theatre.

‘You don’t come to the Bush for a hug’ Madani Younis, Artistic Director

Plays at the Bush Theatre and What We Are Looking For

The Bush Theatre exists to produce original plays that provoke conversation and are theatrically bold. We are looking for plays with contemporary bite, which seek to reflect our contemporary culture and ask sharp questions of what it means to be living now. We want to house a plurality of voices, seek worlds that are under represented and characters who are drawn from the world outside our theatre.

We encourage you to familiarise yourself with our work by visiting us in Shepherd’s Bush and seeing a play or reading those plays we have produced recently. BushGreen is your first port of call to get to know our writers and read articles around our work. All work submitted to the Bush is read for production or development in the first instance and so you should think about your new play as a potential production for the Bush.

Guidelines for Submission

We advise you to avoid sending the very first draft of your play or rushing to finish your play to meet a script window deadline.

We do not accept:
  • screenplays
  • proposals for adaptations
  • new musicals (which we would not develop outside of a commission)
  • one act plays
  • more than one submission
  • work in translation or not written in English.
  • plays which have already received a production

Resubmissions: If you have submitted your script to us before, please include details of how the script has undergone a redrafting process. Without significant redrafting, we will be unable to consider your script.

We encourage you to look at the full range of work in our season and if you are submitting a play that is historically set or biographical to include a rationale as to the contemporary relevance of the play.

We only accept submissions from playwrights in the UK and the Republic of Ireland, unfortunately we cannot read plays from international writers.

Please complete the submissions form fully and make sure that there is no trace of your name or contact information on the script as we would like these to be read anonymously.

The Bush Theatre is committed to upholding the highest standards of sustainable operation in its activities, and to minimise the impact of its activities on the environment. We endeavour to continually improve our environmental performance, and to aim to achieve standards that exceed minimum levels required by legislation and general codes of practice and therefore are unable to accept script submissions by post.

What happens when submissions open…

What Happens Next

All scripts that are received are read by Bush Theatre readers, made up of a team of professional playwrights, directors and other artists, and the creative team including the Associate Dramaturg and Associate Director. All scripts are read and a reader’s report written which is the foundation of any recommendation to the wider producing team and Artistic Director at regular script meetings. A decision is made on whether a meeting with the writer or further development (readings or workshops) of the play is appropriate.

We will contact you to keep you up to date with the progress your play is making and will always inform you of the final outcome.  The large volume of submissions we receive means this process can take up to 6-8 months.