Expanding the battlefield - Centro Dramático Nacional

Expanding the battlefield

Lucía Carballal Aimed at: Playwriting for Dramático Professionals

7-10 MARCH 2023 from 10 am to 2 pm Full details of the workshop will be sent by email when the registration period opens and only to Dramático Professionals related to the professional profile of the workshop, in this case, playwriting.


Automatic associations are the enemy of writing. They are the approaches to what we “want to say” with what we write. At times, they take the form of evidence, for example, “to talk about loneliness, I will set the scene in a solitary and empty space…” or “I will make a critique of the system through the character of a corrupt politician”. These are typically reflexes of thought resulting from what we have seen others do and our preconceptions about the world and the theatre. Therefore, for the sake of a play, it is incredibly healthy to detect these emerging associations, put them on hold (without discarding them altogether) and investigate further, if only for a while. This approach can help us explore the flipside of our initial intentions, in other words, the exact opposite (where we feel uncomfortable), and discover potentially useful elements. This is the goal of this workshop led by playwright Lucía Carballal.

Taking simple material provided by participants on the first day (e.g. an idea, character, space, formal approach, theme, etc.) as the basis for a script, we will seek to expand their battlefield, i.e. the territory of their writing, in different directions.

Through three concepts —the opposite, the extreme and the ambiguous—we will use practical exercises to explore this new approach to ideas, form, characters, and scenes that we otherwise would not have written. By the end of the workshop, participants will have created an unpredictable map from their initial ideas through various written materials and shared reflections that will ultimately enrich their creative process.


Lucía Carballal

Lucía Carballal

Lucía Carballal (Madrid, 1984) is the author of more than ten plays. Her most recent works include La actriz y la incertidumbre, released as part of the La Pira project at Centro Dramático Nacional, Las bárbaras (Centro Dramático Nacional), La resistencia (El Pavón-Kamikaze Theatre Scholarship, Teatros del Canal), Una vida americana (Teatro Galileo, finalist in the Max Awards for Best Theatrical Authorship) and Los temporales (National Drama Centre), all of them compiled in the book Las últimas published by La uña rota in 2021.

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Her previous works include A España no la va a conocer ni la madre que la parió, co-authored with Víctor Sánchez Rodríguez, premiered at the Russafa Escènica Festival in Valencia and winner of the Eurodram Award, and Mejor historia que la nuestra, represented at the Teatro Lara and runner-up of the Marqués de Bradomín Prize. In parallel to her work as a playwright, she has worked as a scriptwriter and has taught writing courses at the Sala Beckett, the ECAM and La Casa Encendida.

©Heike Steinweg