Mini Commissions (2009-17)

A Short History of Baths (2017) – poetry sequence written for A poet’s guide to the archive. Commissioned by Poetry International Archive, Southbank Centre for exhibition, archive tour and performance at The Poetry Library open day.

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Apples and Snakes, circa 1983 (2017): performance poet commissioned by Apples and Snakes in response to their archive. Premiered on The Verb, BBC Radio 3, Contains Strong Language, Hull

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This Air (2016) - poem commissioned by The Poetry Library Southbank Centre in response to digital archive. Premiered National Poetry Day, The Verb BBC Radio 3.

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“Blue” (2016) for ‘In the Bellows’ – script for a puppet show.

In The Bellows are a theatre collective based in the South of England. We specialise in puppetry, music and invention. Established in Cornwall at the end of 2015 by musician/performer Kaile Lucas and puppeteer/producer Nix Wood In The Bellows create performance based work with a focus on unique audience experience, spectacle and invention.

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The Boardroom (2014)

For The Past 30 Years

Written by Hannah Silva. Performed by Lorna Laidlow, Directed by Tessa Walker.

Commissioned and Produced by Women and Theatre.

6 Writers, 6 Stories, 30 Years

‘The Boardroom’ a monologue about a ‘woman in business’ – one of six monologues commissioned by Women and Theatre.

The Door, Birmingham REP, 9-11th October 2014

By taking stock of the past can we illuminate the present and protect the future? For the Past 30 Years is a new production for Women & Theatre’s 30th Anniversary Year.

Created by regional writers from research interviews with mainly Birmingham-based women, For the Past 30 Years is a compelling collection of monologues that portrays the lives of six women who have been working for 30 years in different fields: Theatre, Health, Community, Probation, Education, and Business.

Lorna Laidlow in The Boardroom. Photo: Graeme Allan
Lorna Laidlow in The Boardroom. Photo: Graeme Allan

Thanataphobia (2013-)

new working title: Gagged

Libretto by Hannah Silva. Originally commissioned through a Jerwood/Aldeburgh opera writing fellowship with composer Joanna Lee. Unfortunately the work didn’t come into fruition. However the concept formed the basis for my play ‘Gagged’ which was a runner up in the Leslie Scalapino award for Innovative Women Playwrights (2013) and is still in development.

‘Gagged’ asks what would happen if freedom of speech was outlawed in Britain.

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Come to Where I’m From (2013)

Short monologue commissioned by Paines Plough, written and performed by Hannah Silva, The Drum Theatre Royal Plymouth.

 COME TO WHERE I’M FROM features 100 short plays by the country’s top writers about the place they call home

Shown at the Drum, Theatre Royal Plymouth, 2013 . Also part of event at Southbank Centre 2014.

Come To Where I’m From is a theatrical tapestry of the UK, woven by writers asking if home is really where the heart is.

Since 2010, 100 playwrights from across the UK have returned to their home towns to write plays about the places that shaped them.

At theatres from Bristol to Belfast, Cardiff to Coventry and Nottingham to Newcastle, these plays were performed by the playwrights themselves, coming home to tell their tale.

Now this five year project culminates with a three day installation and the launch of a smart phone app.

An interactive map of the UK allows listeners to hear tales of home from 100 of the UK’s finest playwrights. A free-to-download smart phone app offers a playwright’s travel guide to Britain.

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Merman (2012)

“A colourful cantata about a 14th century sea-monster which was tortured in Orford Castle before escaping to haunt the fisherfolk over the centuries – an echo of up-the-coast Peter Grimes” The Arts Desk

Libretto by Hannah Silva. Music by Joanna Lee. Commissioned by the Aldeburgh Music Club. Performed in Orford Church, Suffolk for the 60th Anniversary of the Aldeburgh Music Club. Also performed by Thomas Mills High School for ‘Britten 100’.

A departure from my usual work, but perhaps worth remembering if only for the line ‘Take your cabbage soup and retreat!’ The programme including the libretto can be viewed here: Aldeburgh Music Club

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Mannequin (2011)

Libretto by Hannah Silva. Music by Joanna Lee. Micro-opera created as part of the Aldeburgh/Jerwood Opera Writing Foundation Scheme. Performed at Snape Maltings Summer 2011. Directed by Tom Creed. (The libretto is re-produced in ‘Forms of Protest’.)

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Boat on the Water (2009)

Hannah Silva in Boat on the Water
Hannah Silva in Boat on the Water

Devised and performed on a small boat at the Mayflower Marina in Stonehouse, Plymouth by Hannah Silva, Chloe Langford and Alice Tatton Brown. A dance-ing Devon festival commission. Supported by Apples and Snakes.

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