About Us
A Closer Look

“Theatre Workshop reclaims the space that was created by the worker’s theatre movement and uses it to give voice to those who need it.” – The British Council


TWS gives voice to people on the margins of society and works to involve them directly in the telling of their stories.
TWS creates opportunities for people to be involved in the creation of high quality film drama and theatre.

“This first feature film from Theatre Workshop burns with relevence. Raw-edged, and crafted by passionate collective effort, its inspiring, provocative stuff.” Hannah McGill, Director, Edinburgh International Film Festival.


TWS recognises that some people face barriers to participation and works to find practical ways to overcome them.

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Support and Recognition

Copyright acknowledgement and awards

THE HAPPY LANDS is a Theatre Workshop Scotland Production supported by The National Lottery through Creative Scotland in association with BBC Scotland. Directed by Robert Rae, Produced by Helen Trew, Photography by Scott Ward, Music by James Ross, Design by James Helps, Edited by Florian Nonnemmacher.

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Community And Engagement

The Process

In all our work with communities and voluntary participants TWS aims to:

  • Have an open access policy i.e. include anybody who would like to be involved. We are conscious of the barriers to participation (physical, cultural and economic) and in designing our projects work to overcome them.
  • To ensure that the voice of the community informs the creative process.
  • Build a partnerhsip based on mutual respect between professional theatre and film makers’ craft and community volunteers’ experience .
  • Say something important about the time we live in – we want to engage people in art that matters to them and to our audience.
  • Ensure that participants gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter as well as the artistic and technical processes of making a film or play.
  • Use the community as the starting point for our research to ensure an authentic representation of its culture.
  • Ensure that any individual access requirements are met and support offered to allow each person to participate fully.

TWS aims to deliver the best possible product through the best possible process. Our experience is that people’s enjoyment and satisfaction is enhanced by a high quality production. Our theatre projects usually involve over a hundred volunteers, our film projects nearer to four hundred, and many of them come back again and again. For example our 2005 Community Play BLACK SUN OVER GENOA attracted 60 participants as actors and 75 participants as choir members. 194 workshops were held by the opening night at Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre.
Our process begins with a series of Taster Workshops led by professional artists and technicians which give everybody an opportunity to decide what they might like to do on the project. Once they’ve decided they will work over a period of months with the professional team whose brief is to develop the participants’ skills as well as deliver the production. We are constantly learning and refining and adapting our model – at times we have combined our professional and community work such as with THREEPENNY OPERA and in 2007 we extended the model into feature film production. TROUBLE SLEEPING was our first participatory film. For more information on TROUBLE SLEEPING click here.

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Upcoming Projects

More from TWS

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