Writersroom 10 winners announced

Writersroom 10 was created to celebrate the unique relationship between the theatre and the BBC. The final 10 leapt out through their originality and boldness and are as diverse in writing style as they are in the locations of the theatres that nominated them.Kate Rowland, BBC Creative Director, New Writing
Date: 28.04.2014     Last updated: 28.04.2014 at 13.45
Category: Corporate; Drama
BBC Writersroom has awarded £10,000 to talented new theatre writers from across the UK.

Writersroom 10 was launched at the Theatre-Broadcast Conversation to mark the importance of theatre as the first home for many brilliant writers in the UK and invest in writers and new theatre writing at an early stage.

The 10 writers will be part of a year-long development scheme and will each receive a seed-commission of £1000, a BBC mentor to broaden their scriptwriting horizons and bring a fresh perspective to their work, the opportunity to develop new work for The Space and a programme of partnership events with theatres.

Kate Rowland, BBC Creative Director, New Writing, says: “Writersroom 10 was created to celebrate the unique relationship between the theatre and the BBC. The final 10 leapt out through their originality and boldness and are as diverse in writing style as they are in the locations of the theatres that nominated them.”

The 10 winning writers and their partner theatres are:

  • Alice Birch - West Yorkshire Playhouse
  • Carol Vine - Brockley Jack
  • Ellie Stewart - Traverse Theatre
  • Frank McCabe – Greyscale
  • Matilda Ibini - Soho Theatre
  • Ian Townsend - Bolton Octagon
  • Joe White - Birmingham Rep
  • Lisa Jen Brown - National Theatre Wales
  • Mufaro Makubika - Nottingham Playhouse
  • Samuel E Taylor - Bristol Old Vic

Previous Writersroom 10 winners include Rachel De Lahay who went on to win the Charles Wintour Award for Most Promising Playwright,  Kenny Emson, who as a result of winning got commissioned to write on EastEnders and his own Radio 4 Afternoon Drama,  and Dawn King whose  play Ciphers was produced by Out of Joint.  Others writers went on to have their work produced on The Verb, on BBC Radio 3.

Writersroom 10 judges were acclaimed writers Tim Price (The Radicalisation Of Bradley Manning), Lucy Kirkwood (Chimerica, The Smoke), and Kate Rowland (BBC Creative Director, New Writing).

Tim Price says: "It was a real privilege to read the shortlisted plays for Writersroom 10. New writing is under attack via cuts handed down from local government forcing theatres to adopt an increasingly risk averse approach to programming. Writersroom 10 offers an innovative solution to this, and the winning plays are some of the finest new plays I have read.

"The winning writers display a talent for writing plays that ask questions of Government, society, family and the individual and remind us how liberating it is, to celebrate diversity and champion the under-represented."

Lucy Kirkwood says: "It has been a great pleasure and an inspiring experience to read the shortlisted scripts, and to be introduced to writers thinking in such bold, fine, surprising ways. I am excited to think of the stories they will tell in the future."

Notes to Editors

BBC Writersroom

BBC Writersroom champions new writing talent in film, television, radio, and theatre. Recent successes include Dominic Mitchell’s In The Flesh which came from a Writersroom Northern Voices Scheme, and Debbie Moon’s Wolfblood, one of the winners of an open CBBC competition for original new drama. Both of these are now in their second series. Shazad Mohammed’s series Homegrown is now in development with BBC Comedy.

BBC Writersroom runs schemes targeting talent from a range of sources and works in partnerships with theatres, writers' organisations, screen agencies, and the wider cultural industries. It helps new writers develop their craft through professional training, the website and in open sessions around the country with the UK's best writing talent.

UM