FAQs

Where can I buy copies of the Platform plays?

The scripts are published by Nick Hern Books so you can purchase copies directly from their website, or through other online retailers and in bookshops. However, Tonic is also selling copies through this website and for a limited time, if you are an education, youth or theatre organisation, you can buy copies of the scripts directly from us for a heavily discounted rate.

Are the Platform plays published singly or as anthologies?

All the titles in the Platform series are published individually, not as anthologies. The feedback we received from teachers and youth theatre directors is that the bulkiness of anthologies can make them overly cumbersome to use in rehearsals. We appreciate that anthologies can represent better value for money than single scripts, and this is part of the reason Tonic is selling scripts via this website for a special reduced rate of £4.50 per copy (normal price, £8.99) or even cheaper if you make a bulk order. By doing this, we hope the Platform scripts will remain affordable.

Am I allowed to buy one copy of the script and photocopy it for my young people/students?

Under copyright law, photocopying scripts is illegal. We appreciate it happens, particularly among more cash-strapped schools and youth groups. That said, Tonic is offering a significant discount on Platform scripts if purchased through this site; they’re just £4.50 per copy and even cheaper if you make a bulk order. We’re doing this because we want to encourage groups to buy scripts rather than photocopy them – they’re more durable and reusable than photocopies and any profits Tonic makes from our book sales will go straight back into the pot for the next round of Platform commissions. Please consider – once you’ve factored in the time, paper, and cost of photocopying to you – buying all your copies directly from us. We also think they make nicer objects for your young people to work with than dog-eared stacks of paper!

Can I just buy one copy of a Platform play, and then place a further order if I think it’s right for my young people?

Of course, you can buy as many or as few plays as you’d like and you can place multiple orders.

I want to stage a production of one of the Platform plays – can I just go ahead?

You’ll need to obtain an amateur performance licence first. This is a quick and straightforward process and can be done by contacting the Performing Rights Department at Nick Hern Books on 020 8749 4953 or at rights@nickhernbooks.co.uk. Nick Hern Books are offering a specially discounted amateur performance licence rate for the Platform plays of £60 (+ VAT in the UK) per performance.

Why do I have to pay for an amateur performance licence? Where does this money go?

It’s standard practice that all groups performing a play – including amateur groups – pay for a performance licence. Playwrights make their living not just from the sale of scripts but also from having their work performed. It is very hard to sustain a career in writing and to make a living from it, which is why it is so important to pay the performing rights fee before using a writer’s work.

For the Platform plays, Nick Hern Books have reduced the amateur performance rate down to £60 (+ VAT in the UK) per performance to make the plays accessible to as many groups as possible. This breaks down in the following way:

  • 20% goes to Nick Hern Books so they can cover the costs they incur in administrating the performance rights
  • 40% goes to the writer as a royalty
  • 40% goes to Tonic. We put this directly into the commissioning pot for the next round of Platform plays.

What this means is that by paying for your performance rights, you’ll be putting back in to Platform. Tonic receives no core funding so we have to raise every penny that’s needed to commission future plays to add to the Platform series. If every group that performs a Platform play pays their fair share of amateur performance rights, we’ll be able to get more plays out there for you, far far quicker. We know some groups shirk paying for rights – please don’t!

But I’m worried we won’t break even on ticket sales if we’re paying for a performance licence. What should I do?

If you’re worried about being out of pocket because of the cost of an amateur performance licence – for instance if you won’t be charging for tickets, know you’ll have a very small audience, or appreciate your audience can’t afford to pay much – please contact the Performing Rights Department at Nick Hern Books to discuss your situation. Tonic and Nick Hern Books want the Platform plays to be performable by as many groups as possible and will do what we can to help.

Can I use the image and blurb on the script covers on the posters, programmes, and marketing material for my group’s production of a Platform play?

So long as you are an amateur group, yes you can and this is free of charge. You can discuss this with Nick Hern Books when arranging your amateur performance licence. The cover images were designed by Kathy Barber at Bullet Creative (www.bulletcreative.co.uk). Please mention this as a credit if you are using her work.

Is there bad language in the scripts?

No, you won’t find any swearing in the Platform plays. Teachers in particular have told us they can’t have scripts with bad language in school or performed by their students so we have asked our writers to avoid it.

I’m thinking of staging a professional production of one of the plays. Can I do this?

You can enquire about professional performance rights via the following agencies:

I’m a writer and I’d like to be considered for a Platform commission. Can I send Tonic my script?

Tonic’s plan is to commission further plays for the Platform series. However, we want to be open on this website about how limited our resources are; the expressions of interest Tonic receives from writers about Platform already significantly outstrips the number of commissions we can actually offer. Despite this we remain very happy to hear from writers, so if you would like to send us a sample of your work, or contact us about writing for Platform you can do so at info@tonictheatre.co.uk

Please note we are highly unlikely to commission writers who don’t have a track record writing professionally for big casts or a proven interest in making work with or for young people. It is not anticipated that we will add plays that have already been written or performed to the series; all the Platform plays are newly commissioned works.