Everything you need to know about the Unscripted Players

With pitches for UP’s Big November Shows just on the horizon, we thought we’d write you a handy blog post with everything you need to know about our amateur improv group, all in one place! Whether you’re hoping to throw your hat in the ring to direct the next UP Big Show or your just looking for like-minded friends who are also into improvisation, this is the place for you!


What are the Unscripted Players? 

In a nutshell, we are the UK’s first am-dram company dedicated to improvised theatre! 

Who is it for?

If you’re interested in improvised theatre in any way, and want to be part of a community with like-minded individuals then look no further. Whether you’re new to improv, are coming back after a long break, or have been performing regularly for many years the Unscripted Players is for you. 

Through the various activities and opportunities available, UP members enjoy socialising, nerding out over improv, testing out new ideas, and performing together.

What opportunities are available to you? 

  • Come along to one of our Pay What You Decide Improv Jam nights, every first Thursday of the month, and we’ll help you connect with other Unscripted Players members for a chance to socialise with others and play
  • Every two months we host the Unscripted Space, a space run voluntarily by an Unscripted Player member for free. This is a great opportunity to test out ideas, games, scenes or anything you’d like to try in a space separate from a classroom environment or a social night like the Jam

The Unscripted Players Big Shows

  • The Bristol Improv Theatre makes space in our programming for Unscripted Players shows during April and November 
  • Members will have the opportunity to pitch new show ideas for these double bill slots during our ‘open pitching’ weeks. If your show is chosen the theatre will help bring it to life (assisting with auditions and supporting rehearsals)
  • Not up for pitching a show? Members can also audition for these Big Shows
  • Not up for performing? Members can also get involved in the production team, operating tech (no previous experience needed as we’ll give you training) or helping with other elements of production – depending on what you are interested in – just let us know!

What support is available to help Unscripted Players Members put on the Big Shows?

  • In the run up to our pitch applications opening, we’ll run a supported pitching workshop for you to talk through any ideas (no matter how far you’ve gotten) and how to develop these ideas into shows
  • The theatre offers free rehearsal spaces, assistance with auditions, and a supported Dress Rehearsal and Tech Rehearsal in the lead up to the shows
  • The two Unscripted Players Shows that are chosen in the pitch process will get two evening and one matinee performance each.

How do I get involved? 

All you need to do is sign up to receive our newsletter (which is completely free!). You’ll receive more information and updates when these opportunities come up! 

Head to the Unscripted Players Homepage to sign up today >


Quote from James Cottle, director of UP’s Big April Show, ‘Spur of the Moment

Directing a show for Unscripted Players was a terrific experience, though certainly a little daunting at first. Having only really relied on performing experience up until now, directing really pushed me into pulling in a bunch of other skills and learning all of the various production considerations. But, much like when you’re part of the cast, really the joy of improv comes from what everyone else has to offer, as we adapted and developed that show in a really fun, collaborative space

So why should you pitch an idea? There’s bound to be a genre or format or what if scenario or something that YOU alone would be perfect for directing (don’t pretend like you don’t already have several up your sleeve)! I got to have the best time directing in my favourite genre, and you absolutely could too. You’ll meet a huge amount of lovely and talented folks along the way, and you’ll be really taking your improv chops to the next level while doing it. Seems like a win win to me.


To find out more about the Unscripted Players and sign up to the mailing list, head to the Unscripted Players Homepage >

To find out more about pitching for a show, check out our Unscripted Players Pitching Workshop >