Truant was formed in 2003 by director Natalie Wilson and writer Billy Cowan. They met when Natalie directed a rehearsed reading of Billy’s Writing Out International award winning script Smilin’ Through - a competition launched by The Finborough Theatre, London looking for new Gay or Lesbian plays.

Sharing the same dream of developing and producing new queer specific work, they joined forces and launched Truant Company in May 2003 with their first piece of work Daddy - a multimedia monologue for Birmingham Rep. This was followed by Heart Is A Lonely Hunter at Manchester's 24:7 Festival, which was written and directed by Billy. In 2005 Smilin' Through was co-produced by Birmingham Rep, Contact in Manchester and Queer Up North. The play was nominated for Best New Play of the year by The Manchester Evening News and was remounted by The Drill Hall in London in 2007.

Other works include Care Takers (2016) Still Ill (2014) The Right Ballerina (2012) Care Takers (2009/10) and Stigmata (2006). All plays have been supported by Arts Council England and have toured the UK. Still Ill, The Right Ballerina, Care Takers and Stigmata have all been part of Homotopia.


During this time both Natalie and Billy have pursued individual careers as well as keeping Truant together. Natalie is now Artistic Director of Theatre Centre in London and Billy teaches Creative Writing at Edge Hill University.

Billy has also written youth community plays for Bolton Octagon (Sidelined and Straight Talk) and for M6 Theatre Company (Glee & Glum, Web Pal and It Should Have Been Me) .

Care Takers is published by Aurora Metro Books, Smilin' Through and Still Ill, The Right Ballerina, Glee & Glum and the monologues Web Pal and It Should Have been Me are all published by Playdead Press Ltd and are available on Amazon.