New pioneering programme for development of musicals


7 Feb 2024

News Story

Twelve theatre artists from the UK, USA and India, who will be taking part in a pioneering new musical theatre residency programme in Scotland this spring, have been announced today.

The Musical Theatre Writing Residency is a two-week international programme for emerging and established book writers, composers and lyricists.

Taking place in the stunning surroundings of Cove Park from 4 to 17 March 2024, the programme will see writing teams provided with an immersive and creative space to freely connect, develop, collaborate and create ideas for new musical theatre works.

The artistic collaborators will include Scotland/UK-based artists Debbie Hannan and Andy McGregor; Linda McLean and David Paul Jones; Samir Bhamra, Devesh Sodha and Robby Khela; Jonathan O’Neill and Isaac Savage; US-artists Nikki Lynette and Lili-Anne Brown; and Indian artist Sushma Soma.

The residency will see the teams developing their ideas, with projects and themes including a punk rock musical based on the story of some of Scotland’s most militant suffragettes, a 90s-inspired sci-fi romp set around Scottish UFO hotspot Bonnybridge, and a haunting horror musical that blends dark rock, urban grime, pop, and cinematic scores with Hindu mythology.

The residency has been developed by Dundee Rep Theatre and Cove Park alongside National Theatre of Scotland and eleven other Scottish and international partners, making it one of the largest collaborative projects in the recent history of the performing arts in Scotland.

Partners include Capital Theatres, Citizens Theatre, Macrobert Arts Centre, National Centre for the Performing Arts (Mumbai), Octopus Theatricals (New York City), Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh and the Traverse Theatre. Associate partners include A Play, A Pie and A Pint, Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Playwrights’ Studio Scotland and the Tron Theatre.

The residency was devised by Andrew Panton, Artistic Director of Dundee Rep Theatre, who said:

“This residency has been a number of years in the making. I’m thrilled that so many sector-leading organisations in Scotland, India and the US have joined Dundee Rep and Cove Park to present this residency. We will be creating a safe space for the participating artists to experiment with their work and the form. We know that there is huge audience demand for musical theatre and this is an opportunity for our participants to learn from industry-leading experts and from each other, I believe that this is a huge investment in the talent that we need to create the next decade of great musicals.”

More information on the residency can be found here.