New Play Development Program

COMPASS New Play Development Program is dedicated to creating and premiering new work on our stages.

The Grand will commission, develop, and premiere original plays that are relevant to our city, and region. While these homegrown plays will begin here, our stories will be shared with stages around the world.

“A major thread throughout my career has been a focus on developing new work. New work allows us to reflect our city, and its people – to show who we are and who we want to be.” –Dennis Garnhum

Theatre Creators' Reserve Grant  Learn More »

On Stage 2021/22

Re:Opening Festival

The Festival featured new work by four local artists. This multidisciplinary four-week event asked the artists to use their unique skillsets to create new work. Learn More »

The four curators and creators of the Re:Opening Festival productions stand together in a group shot.
Photo by Mai Tilson



ROOM brings together artists from the UK and Canada to tell a story written by London resident Emma Donoghue. Following the success of the award-winning film and novel, Donoghue penned a stage adaption with songwriters and theatre-makers Cora Bissett and Kathryn Joseph. The production premiered in the UK in 2017 with original partners Theatre Royal Stratford East, National Theatre of Scotland, and Abbey Theatre in Dublin. Further development of the script is being supported by COMPASS and Covent Garden Productions.  Learn More »


Emma Donoghue
© Punch Photographic
Title Sponsor


GROW sees the return of the PROM QUEEN songwriting team Colleen Dauncey and Akiva Romer-Segal, along with book-writer Matt Murray. This dynamic team represents the best emerging talent this country has to offer. COMPASS and the Canadian Music Theatre Project at Sheridan College will develop GROW in preparation for its premiere in March/April 2022 and looking ahead to future productions beyond the Grand. Learn More »


Colleen Dauncey and Akiva Romer-Segal
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In Development

Grand Ghosts

by Trina Davies

Trina is hard at work on the new COMPASS commission. She was joined by imaginative artist Jillian Keiley as director & dramaturge on the project in 2021.

Here’s what she had to say about this script’s development:

“On December 2, 1919 Ontario theatre tycoon Ambrose Small sold all of his theatres, including the Grand, for a massive amount of money. The same day he disappeared. He left behind all of the money, a jealous wife, a disgruntled employee, gambling buddies, and a mistress. In the century that has passed, his ghost has been spotted in dark corners of his favourite theatre, the Grand. This spooky, vaudeville-inspired piece has been haunting me and I can hardly wait to share it with Grand audiences.”

Trina Davies

Jillian Keiley
Development Sponsored by
Tourism London

Homes: A Refugee Story

(Working Title)

Originally an award-winning novel, HOMES is being adapted for the stage by the dynamic writing team of Haysam Kadri and Winnie Yeung. Homes: A Refugee Story is the heart-rending account of Abu Bakr al Rabeeah, an Iraqi-born boy who as a child survived the civil war in Syria and now lives in Edmonton.


Past Development

Juno's Reward

Written by Megan Watson

Presented as part of the 100 Schools program

A young woman wears a crown and a yellow dress with a colourful metallic fringe.
Photo by Mallory Brown

Presenting Sponsor

Make a Difference Community Pillar Partner



This London Life

Written & Directed by Morris Panych

Premiered at the Grand Theatre in October 2019

A young man with a cast on his leg sits on a bed on the set of This London Life. A young boy leans against a ladder on one side of the bed, and a woman stands on the other side, speaking.
Photo by Dahlia Katz

Title Sponsor
Development Sponsored by
Tourism London

Silence: Mabel and Alexander Graham Bell

By Trina Davies
Directed by Peter Hinton

Premiered at the Grand Theatre in January 2018, toured to the National Arts Centre October 2018.

The cast of Silence listens to a man speak during a scene in the play.
Photo by Claus Andersen


An Undiscovered Shakespeare

by Spontaneous Theatre

A workshop production presented by the Grand Theatre and the Stratford Festival.


Theatre Creators' Reserve Grant  Learn More »

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London, ON N6A 3E4