Engine Room

Current Engine Room Opportunities

Latest opportunities

Our Engine Room programme has our ‘theatre without walls’ ethos at its heart, bringing artists together to develop skills, networks and create new work at the greatest reach of their imaginations and ambitions.

Engine Room focuses on empowering and enabling artistic communities, while still supporting individual artists, collectives, and companies. We foster creative environments across the country, in partnership with local venues and organisations and offer a shifting menu of free and paid invitations and opportunities. To take part in Engine Room, artists must be based in Scotland and for all activity taking place outside the central belt, artists from the local area will be given priority.

Engine Room opportunities will change throughout the year, responding to the needs of artists we meet, currently they are organised within the following strands;


Engine Room Strands

Admin Fridays
An invitation for artists, makers and producers to come together for a day of communal working.

Guest Room
Free rehearsal or making space.

Idea and Career Surgeries
Spend an hour with National Theatre of Scotland staff to bounce around an idea or chat about where you’re at in your career and where you want to go. Get a little more info about what’s on offer at National Theatre of Scotland.

Skills Share
National Theatre of Scotland staff lead sessions and give advice on their area of expertise – producing, budgeting, fundraising, marketing, production management and more.

Process Pop In
Opening up research and development workshops and rehearsals for other artists. Either by inviting individuals in to observe these processes or by artists working on productions and developments taking time to chat and give an insight into their process.

Go See
We bring artists together to see our work and the work of other companies, usually inviting artists who share a specific common practice that relates to the show.

Symposiums, discussions, forums or a blether.
Opportunities for artists to come together around a topic or idea.

We invite leading artists and makers to lead workshops around their specific area of expertise.

Engine Room Lounge is a space for artists, producers and makers to come together as collaborators, friends or individuals to meet, think, eat, nap, chill out, discuss or learn. A mental and literal space for artists. An opportunity for conversation or for silence, a space where questions can be asked, answered and heard, where debates can take place or where thinking gets done.

One Day to Play
A paid opportunity for artists to be matched across-art forms, sharing their practice and experimenting, and together to generate a brand new cross-art-form idea.

An indepth session curated to broaden an artists’ practice and experience, exposing them to new technologies, ideas and ways of working from across sectors, industries and cultures.


Writers' Development

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Script Reading
The first step for writers keen to begin a relationship with the National Theatre of Scotland is our script reading programme which allows us to find writers to whom we can offer support and development opportunities.

We look for writers who can surprise, inspire, provoke, move and entertain us and we’re excited by those plays which – whatever their subject matter or setting – have something urgent to say about the world we live in now.

Every play we receive is read by a member of our highly skilled script reading panel. The readers recommend the plays that have impressed them most so that the Artistic Development department can identify writers of interest and consider them for talent development opportunities.

Our annual Breakthrough initiative is a paid writing residency, run in partnership with A Play A Pie And A Pint. It offers two writers who haven’t yet received a professional production bespoke dramaturgical support and the opportunity to write a play for Òran Mór’s lunchtime theatre. We recruit these writers through the script reading programme and every eligible writer whose play is recommended by the script reading panel will automatically be considered and contacted separately if shortlisted.

Script surgeries
A chance to chat about your writing with National Theatre of Scotland’s Dramaturg Rosie Kellagher and get some feedback on a script you’re currently writing. Open to writers at any level of experience who have a draft of play which would benefit from feedback.


The Starter programme offers eight artists a funded residency of £2,500 to help them develop their skills, networks, and explore a new idea for a piece of theatre.

Find out about 2018 artists

Just Start Here

Just Start Here is a celebration of new work and Scottish artists. A work-in-progress platform for work that’s ready to be tested in front of an audience and a meeting place for artists from different artforms to share their work and practice and for new ideas and collaborations to spark. Taking place in Glasgow in January 2018 and Aberdeen in Autumn 2018.


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Companies in Residence

The National Theatre of Scotland’s Companies in Residence Scheme is a new pilot giving young companies access to resource at Rockvilla over 12 months, to support their growth and sustainability.

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