‘I’ve been writing for almost as long as I can remember. I spent three years studying scriptwriting at university and then the year following graduation I wrote feverishly before the whole world stopped at a standstill. Suddenly, I found myself in the midst of a global pandemic with, for once, more than enough time to write and create. Yet, with all this time on my hands, I couldn’t find the motivation to do it.
That’s not to say I haven’t done anything at all. I’m currently working as a script editing intern for a film and television studio based in South East Asia (the time difference can make working from home … interesting), and have written, directed, and performed pieces for various digital theatre projects in the past 12 months. But it wasn’t until about a month ago, when I found out about The Moral Steam Engine project at Theatre Royal, that I began to commit to realising a project from start to finish over a longer period of time.
It’s been a delight to work with Theatre Royal again – it was, after all, responsible for kickstarting my career in the creative arts at their Youth Theatre group over 15 years ago now. Moreover, the chance to write an audio drama is something well outside of my usual comfort zone – the vast majority of what I work on is for stage or screen. For it to centre around such a fascinating slice of local history is another bonus, and one that rightly resonates still to this day in the aftermath of the Black Lives Matter movement. Lastly, to be able to meet and work alongside such a fascinating collective of people, who I would have otherwise never come across, has been a pleasure. We come from many walks of life but have been brought together to create a brand-new piece of drama that portrays an often forgotten piece of local history. I can’t wait to see how it all turns out!’
– Freya Bennett