Actors & Writers London (AWL)
is London's longest-running professional
play-reading forum for actors and writers. It was established in 1973 at Hammersmith's Riverside Studios and was known as Hammersmith Actors and Writers Group until July 2004.
in Hammersmith, London W6, on alternate
evenings for rehearsed readings and chaired discussions of new plays.
You are welcome to attend our meetings, whether
you are a theatre professional or just interested in theatre.
What We Do
We support writers by enabling them to:
- see their work brought to life before an informed audience;
- benefit from objective, expert feedback.
Actors and Directors
We support actors, directors and aspiring directors by enabling them to:
- take part in and influence the development of new plays;
- work with friends old and new;
- gain performance credits that extend the range of their work.
We work to the highest standards:
- Readings are directed and performed by established professionals.
- Plays are rehearsed, usually on the Sunday afternoon before the reading.
- Participants abide by strict guidelines similar to the rules governing their paid work.
AWL is extremely informal and friendly and there is a licensed bar available.
You are welcome to attend as a non-member, in which case you will be asked to make a £5 contribution at the door towards the costs of room hire, etc. You will be under no obligation whatsoever to become a member.
If you prefer to become a member, annual membership is £10, except for actors and writers under 27 (subscription free) who attend regularly. Meetings are also subject to admission charges: £6 for non-members, £4 for members and £2 for under-27s (identification required). Every member is entitled to a personal page on the AWL website. However, as under-27s pay no subscription charges, they must attend at least three meetings before they qualify for their AWL page.
You must become a member if you wish to submit a script for appraisal or if you wish to act or direct.
If you wish to become a member you can either pay at the door at one of our playreadings, (click here for the schedule), send a cheque or alternatively use BACs. For further details, please contact Stephanie Connell, AWL Treasurer.
See our Membership page for full details, including links to pages of detailed guidelines for writers, actors and directors participating in AWL readings.
The guidelines are adorned by a series of wonderful, witty drawings by Max India, well worth a visit!
We have also recently reviewed our script appraisal policy. Click here for details.
Where To Go From Here
This site tells you everything else you need to know about AWL:
Details of Readings, including cast lists for all readings since September 2002 and information about forthcoming readings
Membership benefits, including details of how to get your free personal page on this website
Members' biographies, including links to personal pages on this site and links to
members' own websites as appropriate
Backstage: details of what's going on behind the scenes, including details of current
plays and projects involving AWL members as well as information about how to participate in the work of AWL
- How to contact us
Dear AWL Committee
Still reeling from winning the competition last night, I very much wanted to write and thank you all for, well, damn near changing my life. This time last year (competition night Dec 2008) I came to AWL for the first time. I had no connections with, or experience of, the theatre and didn't know a soul in the room. All I did know was that, by the end of the evening, I very much wanted to be part of the group. Since then I've attended almost every meeting and watched like a hawk to see what works, what doesn't, studied the audience reaction, listened to the feedback, gradually got to know people, and all the time learning so much.
Looking back now, I can't believe that within a year I've had two short plays and one long one performed plus stories in the showcase evenings. Talk about lucky old so-and-so. I can't tell you how exciting "and somewhat humbling" it has all been. But the biggest thrill has been watching the hugely talented actors, who I can't praise enough, breathe life into my characters. Just to mention the last three I've worked with Jenny (Patrick), who one minute was chatting in the bar then before my very eyes became "every inch of her" my murderous widow; and Robin (Miller) and Patric (Deony) who got my characters to a T and entered into the spirit of the play so brilliantly.
I'd like to thank AWL from the bottom of my heart for the opportunities I've been given, for the confidence I've gained with my writing, for the new friends I've made, and for all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes by you all (don't think we don't notice, we do! We do!).
One final thing then I promise to shut up: it has taken me a year to realise that for me, anyway, the aim of the club is to create a "we're all in this together feeling", all encouraging and supporting one another, all part of the creative process, and all with a common goal: to do the very best work we possibly can. And what writer or actor could ask for more. There, that's me done.
All best wishes, and grateful thanks again,Sally Sheringham