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> > Clive Essame

I have lived with an impairment since birth. I have worked with people who are disadvantaged for one reason or another for many years and have been a professional writer and workshop leader since the early 1990s. I worked with South African actor and writer Ellis Pearson to create my first play Impisi – about disability and identity; and Devon based writer Judith Maitland on Mbali – about mental ill health.

On being a writer

11 January 2016

Blog

A photograph of the cast and crew of CEDA's production of Clive Essame's play, Impisi. It shows many actors in wheelchairs and others standing on a theatre set.

Being a writer is a hard business.  “I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.” —Harper Lee But it is only the start of being a writer who produces work that is read, seen or heard. To achieve that a writer now needs to be a social media expert or a public speaker; a workshop leader; a teacher or a marketer; a director or an actor; and those things can be hard.  The actual writing...

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Adapting a play script for different settings

9 February 2016

Blog

Photograph of a three children taking part in a drama workshop based on Clive Essame's play, Impisi

My play Impisi was originally written as a two-hander and was created for specific actors, Ellis Pearson and Bheki Mkwane. These two South Africans were very accomplished physical actors, one was trained at École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq  and both of them had worked together for many years, in many countries including the UK at the Tricycle Theatre in London. Early on in the production process Bheki had to drop out because he was engaged to work...

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