Our plays and playwrights development program.

If theatre reflects our times then playwrights define our times.

Blue Cow Theatre is committed to discovering and developing exceptional playwrights, and fostering exceptional plays.

Now in its sixth year, the COWSHED is a leader in regional development of writing for the stage, under the nationally renowned dramaturge Peter Matheson.

Applications closed for 2019

Applications for 2020 will open in January


  • All levels of playwrights are invited to apply - beginner, emerging, mid career and established

  • There are 14 places available in the Cowshed 2019

  • One of Australia’s leading dramaturges, Peter Matheson, heads the program. "Peter's knowledge is incredible and the sessions make me ask the tough questions about my work. The deadlines and his gentle prodding ensure that I don't keep putting off my writing." Check out his qualifications here


  • Four weekends of face-to-face meetings and group workshops, during the year

  • Two phone conferences

  • Sharing of your “work in progress” read by professional actors at our end of year Cowshed showing.


  • 2 face-to-face sessions with Blue Cow Artistic Director Robert Jarman

  • Free tickets to all Blue Cow Theatre productions

  • Free tickets to select productions of other professional theatre companies and presenters

  • Free pass to Blue Cow Theatre’s “Day of the Playwright”, featuring Tasmanian and national playwrights and speakers.


To get the most of this program you need to put in. You’ll be writing and re-writing throughout the year and meeting deadlines agreed upon between you and Peter. 


  • Private sessions at the Alabama Hotel 72 Liverpool St Hobart (CBD). Nearest parking Argyle St.

  • Group Sessions at Soho ARTS 14 Weld St South Hobart. Parking available on site.


The year-long Cowshed program costs $396 including GST paid in 2 instalments.

There are some specialised considerations that often accompany the crafting of playscripts and the collegiality and expertise with which The Cowshed’s development program is infused allow a safe, prolonged and meaningful engagement with those skills, as well as the more general requirements and demands of developing a script.

”The Cowshed provided extremely worthwhile opportunities to make contact with fellow scriptwriters and to engage with professionals in the theatrical community, such as directors and actors.... (with) extended workshops and individual consultations with a widely successful and experienced dramaturg in Peter Matheson.
— Cameron Hindrum, who's play, 101, was developed through the Cowshed and will premiere in Launceston in 2019

Apply HERE  

APPLICATIONS DUE midnight, Monday 18 February 2019

Successful applicants will be notified by 25 February 2019

Cowshed dates & general info

Listed below are the dates of the Cowshed. If you have an availability problem for any session dates please let us know in the application form. There may be a way to work around the clash.

Session #1
23 & 24 March 2019 Individual session with Peter + group workshop 

Phone Conference I
between 27 & 28 April 2019

Session #2
15 & 16 June 2019 Individual session with Peter + group workshop 

Phone Conference II
Between 3 & 4 August 2019

Session #3
21 & 22 September  Individual session with Peter + group workshop 

Session #4 & Final Sharing
22 November Final sharing with public reading 23 & 24 November Individual session with Peter + group workshop 

Blue Cow Theatre Inc is assisted through Arts Tasmania by the Minister for the Arts.