SUMMER SCRIPTWRITING BASE
July 21-30, 2023
Dimitar Uzunov (BG/FR)
Dimitar is cofounder of Sofia based Arte Urbana Collectif and founder and director of Summer Scriptwriting Base. He is also founder of the platform Theatre & Science and coordinator for Bulgaria of the European project CURIOUS, linking artists with scientists. Dimitar is a director of Theatre of Wonder – Bulgaria, festival for art and science.
Dimitar Uzunov has authored, directed and acted in many stage productions. He has given workshops in various places around the world. His workshop Creative Storytelling was included in The Best 10 Creative Events in London for September 2018.
OUR BRAIN ON STORIES. WHAT MAKES THRILLERS THRILLING?
What makes a thriller truly thrilling? What if the science holds the key! We will explore the intersection of neurology, cognitive psychology, and storytelling, discover how our brains perceive and respond to different elements of a story, and learn how to use these insights to create captivating and memorable narratives. By analyzing masterpieces of the thriller genre, we’ll uncover their core elements and explore ways to play with them to craft your own breathtaking stories. Get ready to dive deep into the mind-boggling world of storytelling!
The keynote lecture of Dimitar Uzunov will open the Mountan’s Secrets experience.
Anton Bonnici (FR)
Anton is a teacher, playwright and dramaturg based in Paris, France, who aims to infect the world with as much enthusiasm for playwriting and storytelling as humanly possible. He is the co-director of the Paris Fringe international theatre festival and the founder of the Writing for the Stage creative writing courses. His productions via the OfPotters’Demons – Text, Performance and Image Lab – include Quasar Blues (Writer and Director, Winner of the Montmartre Dionysia Showcase, Paris Fringe 2016), Some Stupid Bitch Killed Ana Peaceful (Writer and Producer, Paris 2017), Criminals! (Director and Co-Producer, Camden Fringe 2018, Paris Fringe 2018) and Listen, I’m Dying (Writer, Director and Producer, Moscow 2018, Paris 2018). His plays Yet So As By Fire and Quasar Love have been published by The Opiate Books and are available from all leading online bookstores.
CLIMBING THE MOUNTAINS OF MADNESS – WITH ENTHUSIASM, CURIOUSITY AND HOPE!
In this two day workshop, over four sessions, we will be taking a dive into the essential elements of storytelling that help every writer become a more effective and impactful voice. Our goal is to write stories about people we may recognize and empathize with, people living in worlds that come alive off the page in front of us, stories that engage the mind, move the heart and hold our attention in a world that is becoming more and more distracting. And finally, stories with an air of mystery, whispered secrets that tantalize or terrify, tales that might indeed give our readers, or maybe us, their writers, a touch of madness.
Session One: The First Steps of a Process – creativity, inspiration and shapes
Session Two: Understanding Character – a protagonist with a problem
Session Three: Building Worlds – a protagonist with a problem in a living world
Session Four: Discovering Endings – a protagonist with a problem in a living world driven towards an ending
Ágnes Karolina Bakk (HU / RO)
Ágnes Karolina Bakk, PhD, is head and lead researcher of Immersion and Interaction hub at the Innovation Center of Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design in Budapest. She focuses on immersive storytelling & the science of magic, and currently leads two research projects: 1. on romantic relationships in Metaverse-like environments 2. psychological restoration in a specific VR prototype. She is the founder of the Zip-Scene conference that has been running since 2018, cofounder of Random Error Studio that focuses on creations of VR productions and she is the co-curator of Vektor VR section, Hungary’s first VR-focused event. She teaches immersive storytelling, speculative design and offers talks at various conferences from Moscow to Montreal including festivals (Stereopsia, DokLeipzig). She is currently involved as narrative designer in several video games and creates on her own artistic VR production.
DESIGNING NARRATIVES WITH MAGIC AND STRATEGIES LEARNT FROM IMMERSIVE THEATRE
Ágnes Karolina Bakk will offer a sneak peek of analogue and digital immersive environments and explore ways to enhance their immersivity. This will be done by presenting an interdisciplinary theoretical framework for studying immersion across various contexts. Moreover, I will draw parallels between stage magic and immersive productions to understand how the science of magic can further contribute to these productions. Additionally, I will discuss how analogue immersive theatre can enhance immersive productions in virtual reality. Furthermore, we will explore possible design steps that can help creators integrate more magic or magic show-like elements into their immersive work.
Rhianna Ilube (UK)
Rhianna Ilube is a playwright, game-maker and curator from London. She is Associate Director at Coney, leading on their Playful Heritage programme, which specialises in creating interactive experiences inspired by history and heritage sites. As a playwright, Rhianna has had her writing developed and staged at the Royal Court, Omnibus Theatre, and the Oxford Playhouse. Her debut full-length play will be produced and performed in London in early 2024. She is also a curator of the BFI Flare festival, Europe’s largest queer film festival.
Tassos Stevens (UK)
Tassos Stevens is a maker frequently representing Coney company, and also its artistic director. He can wear hats in projects as a director, writer, game and interaction designer, wrangler, and ear. Other projects made for Coney include: A Small Town Anywhere, playing theatre based on the film Le Corbeau; A Game Of Legacy, made for by and with jedi master of play Bernie De Koven; Nightmare High, a BAFTA-winning commission for Channel 4 Education. Outside of Coney he makes storytelling performance including Jimmy Stewart, An Anthropologist From Mars, Analyses Love & Happiness In Humans (And Rabbits) performed in living rooms and other informal settings all over the world.
MAKING WORLDS FOR PLAYING AUDIENCES
Rhianna Ilube and Tassos Stevens, both of Coney (@agencyofconey), will co-lead a 2-day workshop on their approaches to making worlds for playing audiences. We’ll cover some basics of interactive dramaturgy, narrative design, game design, and responding to site and histories. We’ll bring useful practice for collaboration and co-creation, ethical lenses, and taking care of the people playing. The work will be practice-focused, and taught through discussions, making, and play, with reflection stitched through the experience. We’ll refer to case-studies from our practice with Coney, including A Small Town Anywhere, and 1884 – a new piece in development. It may culminate in making short pieces for others to play.
DAVID BASSUK (USA)
David Bassuk is the co-founder and Creative Director of White Horse Immersive in China, a company known for bringing the concept of live immersive narrative to media companies Alibaba and Tencent, as well as developing the narrative for the new China Eden Project in Qingdao set to open in 2023. A US theater director and professor of Transmedia Game Design and Immersive Performance for the State University of New York’s Purchase College, Bassuk has also taught across Europe and the Middle East for the United Nations Mission Iraq.
IMMERSIVE & SPATIAL NARRATIVE DESIGN
Mysteries of Rhodope Mountain
Create a spatial narrative inspired by the history of the ancient peoples and the mysteries of Rhodope Mountain. In this third and last workshop, we will build on previous workshops toward an immersive playable narrative that explores the village and the surrounding environment as a site for an adventure experience. We will collaborate and compete in creative teams challenging ourselves and the world we will have created as an alternate reality game. Your projects will be guided in creating an immersive project that combines story with technology and games. The week’s structure will culminate in an understanding that we have made a journey from traditional storytelling to immersive narrative at the door of the Metaverse.