Recruitment: Placement Students

Here at Paines Plough we are always looking for ways to demystify the way we go about commissioning, producing and touring new plays in order to provide support for theatre makers at any stage of their careers through a programme called Insights.

As part of Insights we offer a flexible programme of work placements designed to support the study of students on university and drama school courses at MA or BA level with practical work experience of a busy touring theatre company. Please see below for information on how to apply for our Summer/Autumn 2018 programmes.

We’re looking for placements to join Team PP for either the Summer or Autumn:

  • The Summer placement period will run for 11 weeks from 15 May to 27 July.
  • The Autumn period will run for 12 weeks from 10 September to 07 December.

You will be in PPHQ 3 days per week, although this can be flexible depending on the placement and your personal study requirements, 10am-6pm with a one-hour break for lunch.

We have three placements on offer:

  • Production Placement
  • Administration Placement
  • Marketing Placement

You can apply for as many roles as you feel you are qualified for.

Please detail the following in your cover letter:

  • Your experience
  • Why you are interested in Paines Plough
  • What you hope to gain from the placement
  • Which role or roles you are applying for
  • Which period (Summer or Autumn) you are applying for

You can download application packs for all three roles here:

Production Placement Application Pack

Administration Placement Application Pack

Marketing Placement Application Pack


We’re delighted to announce that Sabrina Mahfouz’s lyrical masterpiece WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK will be broadcast on BBC Radio 1xtra on Monday 02 April at 7pm.

Alongside Yolanda Mercy’s QUARTER LIFE CRISIS this will be the first time a play has been broadcast on 1xtra.

We asked Sabrina what the play being broadcast on 1xtra means to her:

“When 1xtra launched it seemed surreal but brilliant that the music we loved was being taken seriously enough to be given its own BBC radio channel. It marked a shifting moment for what is culturally valued in this country and I feel that WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK being the first drama they air on there, the shift progresses even further towards a place of space making and inclusive, representational cultural documentation and valuing.

I’m so proud the show, and the team that made it, gets to be a part of 1xtra’s celebration of 20 years of garage and especially happy to get a young woman’s perspective being told on such a huge platform.”

Director, Stef O’Driscoll feels the same way:

“I am so hyped for this story and for this celebration of UK Garage to be broadcast on the radio so it can be experienced by more people. It’s so exciting that companies like Paines Plough and BBC 1xtra are supporting new and innovative ways to celebrate an important part of UK culture and storytelling.

When myself and Sabrina embarked on this project our dreams were for our mates and fellow ravers to experience a story that they could relate to. To create an experience where they could celebrate the summers of love spent on the dancefloor and their coming of age to a London UK Garage soundtrack, a celebration of youth. Now we don’t even have to get our mates into the theatre. You don’t need pay £20 entry you can just tune in or listen on playback whist jamming on the bus, in your house, ANYWHERE.”

WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK had its first outing with co-producer Latitude Festival in the summer of 2015.

Since then the show has been on an incredible journey. It toured nationally in Spring 2016 culminating in a sold out run in the Sackler Space at the Roundhouse as part of Last Word Festival. In 2016 the production had people raving outside the National Theatre as it headlined Latitude’s takeover of the River Stage. Last year we were invited back to Last Word Festival to headline the festival. This saw over 1,000 people raving the night away as our cast were joined on stage by DJ Luck and MC Neat themselves to close the night.

Join WITH A LITTLE BIT OF LUCK on the next leg of its journey by tuning into BBC Radio 1xtra on Monday 02 April at 7pm.

Recruitment: Production Assistant


Wanted: New member of Team PP

Exciting times at PPHQ. We’re on the search for a talented new Production Assistant to come and join Team PP.

We’re looking for someone with excellent administrative skills to support the busy production team, someone who is highly motivated and passionate about new plays and touring.

You’ll be joining Team PP in our Central London office but will regularly find yourself on trains up and down the UK visiting our partner venues and seeing our work on tour.

Up your street? Excellent. We can’t wait to hear from you.

Who are we looking for?

We’re looking for a talented new Production Assistant to come and join Team PP. The Production Assistant works closely with the Production team, administratively supporting the delivery of Paines Plough’s productions and audience development across small-scale, mid-scale, internationally, and Paines Plough’s ACE Strategic Touring funded project Roundabout. Including booking travel and accommodation, co-ordinating castings, arranging and minuting meetings, distributing marketing materials and preparing schedules. The Production Assistant is predominantly office based, though will be required to travel for this post.

The successful candidate will be an enthusiastic member of our dedicated team of ten full-time employees based on Aldwych in Central London. They will have a passion for new plays and touring and experience of working in an administrative role.

Deadline for applications

Monday 12 March 2018 at 12pm

Applications should be submitted by email only to

Please address applications to Sofia Stephanou, Producer and clearly mark the email subject: PRODUCTION ASSISTANT APPLICATION.

If you are unable to submit your application by email, please contact Charlotte Walton on 020 7240 4533.

Shortlisting and Interviews

Shortlisting will take place as soon as possible after the closing date. When shortlisting we are making an assessment of how closely your application meets the selection criteria set out in the person specification.

You will be notified of whether you have been shortlisted or not via email.


w/c Monday 19 March 2018

If you are shortlisted, we will contact you by phone to invite you to interview and follow up with an email.


All offers are made subject to receipt of satisfactory references, proof of identity, address and eligibility to work in the UK.

We hope you find the above helpful and good luck with your application.

Download the Application Form and Application Pack here

Paines Plough Application Form

Production Assistant Application Pack

Why we’re making a new audition pledge to actors

Our Joint AD James explains our thinking behind our new audition pledge.

Back in 2010 when I first joined Paines Plough we started Open Auditions as a direct response to actors telling us they were frustrated at the Catch-22 of needing to be seen to be in something, and needing to be in something to be seen. Our answer was to hold genuinely open calls across the country so everyone had the same chance of securing a slot. We’ve since met 2030 amazing actors we might never have met otherwise. Several of them have gone on to star in PP productions.

Over the past couple of years I’ve been fortunate to spend time with some great groups of Actors’ Guild members in workshops on auditioning for new plays. It’s been fascinating to hear their audition experiences from the other side of the door, and the other side of the table to me.

What becomes quickly and starkly apparent when you do a 360° evaluation of auditions is how often the process is stacked against the actor. For any normal job interview there’s a job description, you’ll get sent some information about the company, you’ll be told who you’ll be meeting, you’ll have time to prepare to present the very best version of yourself.

But for auditions, actors often find themselves sitting in waiting rooms with nothing but some pages of text and with no idea who is on the other side of the door or what they’re looking for. Will someone be reading with me? Should I be off-book? Will I be sitting or standing? Should I try a Scottish accent?

How can you possibly do your best work with so many unknowns?

For my Actors’ Guild workshops I drew up lists of practical tips for auditions, and some of my pet hates. Once I’d given them to the actors, they gave me great auditions. It dawned on me that I’d get much better auditions across the board if I just let actors know what to expect, and what I was looking for. Not exactly rocket science.

So last year we started sending advance emails to every actor who came to audition for us. The email said how much we were looking forward to meeting them, and gave them some basic information about the format of the meeting, the people they would be meeting, and what we’d like to see from them. So I had the chance to let people know they would be sitting around the table, I didn’t expect them to learn the text, I wanted to hear them read in their own accent and they’d be meeting the playwright and producer as well as me.

Armed with some prior knowledge, actors came in more confident and less liable to be thrown. I got to see more of the real them because we’d already established some simple parameters.

From now we promise to always provide actors with the information they need to best prepare for their audition with us, and what to expect from us. We’re making it a formal pledge partly to hold ourselves to account, and partly because we hope it might encourage others to follow suit. We think it will make for better auditions for everyone.

The other thing actors tell us frustrates them is they often only find out about parts when the cast is announced. So from now on, when we announce new productions, we’ll publish breakdowns on our website and we’ll accept and consider CVs from anyone who thinks they’re right for the role.

Read the full pledge here.

Let us know what you think of our pledge and what else we could do better. We’re always keen to hear from you and happy to take your feedback on board. Tweet at us on @painesplough or leave a comment below. 

Welcome to our new blog.

We’re back! Sorry we’ve been away.

Sometimes technology is our friend, sometimes it isn’t.

This is our new blog. We’ll be posting everything from: rehearsal room insights, audition tips, show announcements and probably the occasional blog about food.

If you’re ever looking for any of our old blog posts you can find them on our archive here.

What would you like to hear about? We’re always looking for good ideas. You can get in touch here.