Meet Playwright Andrew Sharpe

For many years a partner in a law firm in Coventry UK, Andrew has been a playwright for ten years, with multiple credits to his name, mostly in London and the southeast. He is best known at the Criterion theatre in Coventry for producing the Springboard Festival in 2023. He also played Talbot in Mary Stuart, Father in The Railway Children and has made several appearances with the band Steamchicken. He has a long history in performing arts as a musician, actor, organiser, poet, pianist, theatre reviewer, artist manager and producer. He has a new play due to be performed at the theatre from 12th – 15th July (

Welcome on the blog Andrew!

What is the title of your play? It’s called The Cost of You. It is about love and betrayal, and how the measure of those supposed constants varies over a lifetime, as seen through the eyes of four adults, each with fifteen years between them.

Why did you want to write it? Within that narrative, I met Jo, a 50-year-old woman, who had given of herself all of her life, and finds happiness, only for it to be snatched away by tragedy. A character like that demands to have her story put front and centre. Her spirit, her sacrifice, and selflessness, drove me on.

You have written a lot of plays in the last decade (see list at the end), what have you found to be the most challenging aspects of being a playwright? When asked, by old friends and strangers alike, ‘what do you do?’ replying ‘I’m a playwright,’ and watching them glaze over. ‘So, you’re retired then’ they generally go on to say.

And the most rewarding? The days and weeks spent in my own head, getting to know new characters and being inspired by them. Goosebumps at a table read when the play lights up in the hands of director and cast. The collective outward breath from the audience when a performance hits the mark.

What are your top tips for an aspiring playwright?

  • Love your characters. Know everything about them. Read what they read. Watch what they watch.
  • Write.
  • Keep writing.
  • Welcome the opportunity to redraft as a fresh start, and revisions as a visit from an old friend.
  • Follow

What do you like to read / watch? Most recent …

Books: The Courage to Heal by Bass and Davies, The Power by Alderman, Middle England by Coe

Theatre: Guys and Dolls at the Bridge, Sweeney Todd at the Criterion, Arcadia at Questors

Film/TV: Cloud Atlas, The Man who Killed Don Quixote, The Sandman,

What are you working on at the moment? I’m producing a play by a Canadian writer, Katherine Alpen, and have a production meeting prior to a performance in October.  I’m working on a report on the social impact of the Springboard Festival at the Criterion and have calls to make.  As a writer I have a reading of extracts of a play of mine, The Painted Smile. I’m debriefing and paying expenses for the recent performance of The House at the End of Empire. I’m casting a development read of A Peculiar Family. I’ve started a redraft of An Almond Latte in the Age of Reason.

You can follow Andrew on Facebook and Twitter, by clicking on the links below:


A short extract to pique your interest from The Cost of You – a play about love and betrayal in a (fictional) legal practice.

Just what has Tim said to his wife Jo?

TIM: It’s the way people used to talk
JO: No. It’s not. It’s the way you talk when you want to sneer at women, inventing made up quotes, to cover your pathetic insecurity. 

TIM: It was just a joke.
JO:  No. It wasn’t. People laugh at jokes. There was nothing remotely funny in what you said. It was small and mean and nasty. And so are you.

The Cost of You is told in reverse chronological order. It is a romantic quadrangle spanning four generations.  Middle-aged Jo, unhappily married, is on the brink of coming out and leaving her husband when her daughter is killed in a road crash. Should she sacrifice her new relationship to hold her family together, terrified of rejection by her son? The play is on from July 12th-15th. Tickets are on sale now from the Criterion website:

POSTSCRIPT: Selected dramatic productions by Andrew Sharpe, including shorts and scratch performances since 2013.             

Songs from a Ledge* Warwick Uni Arts Centre 2013 1
  Bloomsbury Festival London 2013 1
  Spread Eagle Croydon 2014 1
  Wilderness Festival Charlbury 2014 1
  Old Joint Stock Birmingham 2014 6
Goodnight Polly Jones Theatre N16 London 2016 10
The Painted Smile Theatre N16 London 2017 1
My Celebrity Friend Hen and Chicks London 2017 1
  Cockpit theatre London 2017 1
  Hackney Attic London 2017 1
Meet me at the Nightingale# Cockpit Theatre London 2018 1
  Merlin Theatre Frome 2017 1
  Pumphouse Theatre Watford 2018 1
  Stockwell Playhouse London 2019 1
Barricades   Private Preview Kenilworth 2019 1
My Name is Cathy Bread & Roses @ Chapel Playhouse. London 2019 4
From the Ashes Queens Theatre Hornchurch 2019 1
Three Sharpe Shorts Maltings Arts Theatre St Albans 2019 4
The Last Inn Theatre Mix Birmingham 2019 1
The Last Walk of Shame Watford Fringe 2019 1
  Blind Spot Theatre Coventry 2019 1
  Cockpit Theatre London 2021 1
Nothing is Wasted Blind Spot Theatre Coventry 2019 1
Last Walk of Shame Cockpit Theatre London 2022 1
Barricades Pumphouse Theatre (Online R&D) Watford 2020 7
Switch Queens Theatre Hornchurch 2022 1
Spiral Path @ Cockpit Theatre – online 2021 1
  Maltings Arts Theatre St Albans 2023 6
  White Bear Theatre London 2023 6
Springboard Festival, Producer Criterion Theatre Coventry 2023 24
The Closing Criterion Coventry 2023 1
The House at the End of the Empire Pump House Theatre Watford 2023 1
  Bossanyi Studio London 2023 1
The Cost of You Criterion Theatre Coventry 2023 July 12-15th
The Painted Smile Cockpit Theatre, scene in scratch London 2023 September 18th
Thought Monster by Katherine Alpen (Producer) The Hope London 2023 Tbc October

*Songs from a Ledge: a musical co-written with Amy Kakoura. Gigged the musical content at festivals and clubs.

# Meet me at the Nightingale: Highly Commended, Stockwell Playhouse one act festival 2019

@ The Spiral Path: Nominated for a Standing Ovation award in 2022.