Kelly Jones announced winner of Wales Drama Award 2014

Date: 15.12.2014     Last updated: 17.12.2014 at 16.20
Category: Wales; Drama
Kelly Jones from Cardiff has been awarded the Wales Drama Award 2014. The announcement was made today (Monday 15 December) by Faith Penhale and John McGrath at the award ceremony in BBC Cymru Wales’ Roath Lock drama studios, Cardiff Bay.

Pictured: Kate Rowland, Kelly Jones, Faith Penhale, John McGrath

With a prize of £10,000, Kelly will receive the opportunity to develop her ideas with BBC Cymru Wales and National Theatre Wales and a reading of the winning script will take place in early 2015. Her work is inspired by real human stories and often takes inspiration from personal experiences, her up-bringing in Dagenham and rooting in Wales. 

A writer and performer, this year’s winner Kelly Jones has been living and working in Wales since 2007 and is originally from the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham. Kelly is currently working on producing a tour of her solo show The Drowned Girl, a piece she created whilst at National Theatre Wales’ Summercamp in 2013. In February of this year the piece premiered at the Yard Theatre, Hackney Wick, as part of their N.O.W’14 programme.

The biennial Wales Drama Award is presented by BBC Wales and National Theatre Wales, in partnership with BBC Writersroom. It was launched in 2012 - this is only the second time it has been given. The award is offered to any writer residing in Wales, and aims to encourage writers who feel passionate about the stories they want to tell, and who have something to offer audiences across the length and breadth of Wales and the wider UK. Writers were asked to submit a full-length script in any medium, unperformed or unproduced and in the English language and at least 30 minutes long.

The highly acclaimed panel making this all important decision comprised of:

  • Faith Penhale - BBC Cymru Wales’ Head of Drama
  • Kate Rowlands - Writersroom’ BBC Creative Director, New Writing
  • John McGrath - Artistic Director of National Theatre Wales
  • Andrew Davies - Writer (A Poet In New York)
  • Lucy Gannon - Writer (Lead writer and creator of the BBC One drama series Frankie)

Faith Penhale, Head of Drama, BBC Cymru Wales says: “We are truly committed to discovering and nurturing home grown talent here in Wales and this is an unparalleled opening for Kelly to work with the best in the broadcast and theatre industries. Our collaboration with National Theatre Wales and close partnership with BBC Writersroom will provide her with a variety of platforms to showcase her piece and be recognised for her writing skills.”

John McGrath, Artistic Director, National Theatre Wales says: “I’m delighted that Kelly has won this important award. As a writer at a relatively early stage in her writing life, to have been chosen from a very strong and in many cases rather experienced field of applicants is a real achievement. The Wales Drama Award has once again highlighted the strength of dramatic writing talent in Wales, and the range of voices coming through. National Theatre Wales is very proud to have worked alongside BBC Wales and BBC Writersroom to make this award happen.”

This year’s Wales Drama Award 2014 finalists, selected from over 170 other Wales-based drama writers, also included Jeremy Davies (Newport), Alyn Farrow (Cardiff) and Alan Harris (Cardiff). As runners-up they will also be supported with a script development opportunity and £1,000.

Katherine Chandler was the first winner of the Wales Drama Award in 2012. Dirty Protest’s production of her winning script Parallel Lines won best production at the Theatre Critics of Wales 2013 Awards, and her play Bird won the judges’ prize in the Bruntwood playwriting competition. Katherine went on to adapt Terry Jones’ Fairy Tales for National Theatre Wales’ production of Silly Kings in December 2013. In 2015, her play Hood will be performed as part of the National Theatre Connections programme.

Notes to Editors

  • There will be an opportunity to interview Kelly Jones at the Roath Lock studios following the announcement
  • Photography from the ceremony will be available from 2pm (Monday 15 December)

Kelly Jones’ previous work

Kelly trained as a performer at Swansea Metropolitan University and after graduating found her passion for writing. This led to her joining Sherman Cymru Young Writers Programme and various other writing initiatives to hone her craft and develop her voice. Since April 2013 when she decided to leave her full time job to focus on her writing career, she has worked with and for National Theatre Wales, Sherman Cymru and Dirty Protest as well as being mentored by award-winning playwrights Tim Price and most recently Kath Chandler who also won the biannual award in 2012.

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CYHOEDDI KELLY JONES FEL ENILLYDD GWOBR DDRAMA CYMRU 2014

Mae Gwobr Ddrama Cymru 2014 wedi’i dyfarnu i Kelly Jones o Gaerdydd. Gwnaethpwyd y cyhoeddiad heddiw (Dydd Llun 15 Rhagfyr) gan Faith Penhale a John McGrath yn y seremoni wobrwyo yn stiwdios drama Roath Lock BBC Cymru Wales ym Mae Caerdydd.

Gyda gwobr o £10,000, bydd Kelly yn cael cyfle i ddatblygu ei syniadau gyda BBC Cymru Wales a National Theatre Wales a bydd darlleniad o’i sgript fuddugol yn cael ei gynnal yn gynnar yn 2015. Mae ei gwaith yn cael ei ysbrydoli gan hanesion bywyd go iawn ac mae’n aml yn cael ei hysbrydoli gan brofiadau personol, ei magwraeth yn Dagenham a magu gwreiddiau yng Nghymru. 

Yn ysgrifennwr ac yn berfformiwr, mae buddugwr eleni Kelly Jones wedi bod yn byw ac yn gweithio yng Nghymru ers 2007, a daw’n wreiddiol o Fwrdeistref Llundain Barking a Dagenham. Ar hyn o bryd mae Kelly wrthi’n cynhyrchu taith o’i sioe unigol ‘The Drowned Girl,’ darn a greodd tra’r oedd yng Ngwersyll Haf National Theatre Wales yn 2013. Ym mis Chwefror eleni cafodd y darn ei berfformio am y tro cyntaf yn yr Yard Theatre, Hackney Wick, fel rhan o’u rhaglen N.O.W’14.

Mae Gwobr Ddrama Cymru, sy’n cael ei rhoi bob dwy flynedd, yn cael ei chyflwyno gan BBC Cymru a National Theatre Wales, mewn partneriaeth â BBC Writersroom. Cafodd ei lansio yn 2012 - a hwn yw’r eildro iddi gael ei chyflwyno. Mae’r wobr yn cael ei chynnig i unrhyw lenor sy’n byw yng Nghymru, a’i nod yw annog ysgrifenwyr sy’n teimlo’n gryf am y storïau yr hoffent eu hadrodd, ac sydd â rhywbeth i’w gynnig i gynulleidfaoedd ar hyd a lled Cymru a’r DU yn gyffredinol. Gofynnwyd i ysgrifenwyr gyflwyno sgript lawn mewn unrhyw gyfrwng, sydd heb ei pherfformio na’i chynhyrchu o’r blaen, yn y Saesneg ac sydd o leiaf 30 munud o hyd.

Roedd y panel o unigolion nodedig a oedd yn gyfrifol am y penderfyniad pwysig hwn yn cynnwys:-

  • Faith Penhale - Pennaeth Drama, BBC Cymru Wales
  • Kate Rowlands - Cyfarwyddwr Creadigol, Writersroom y BBC, Ysgrifennu Newydd
  • John McGrath - Cyfarwyddwr Artistig, National Theatre Wales
  • Andrew Davies - Ysgrifennwr (A Poet In New York)
  • Lucy Gannon - Ysgrifennwr (Prif ysgrifennwr a chrëwr y gyfres BBC One Frankie)

Meddai Faith Penhale, Pennaeth Drama, BBC Cymru Wales:

“Rydym wedi ymrwymo i ddarganfod a meithrin talentau lleol yma yng Nghymru ac mae hwn yn agoriad holl bwysig i Kelly i weithio â’r goreuon yn y diwydiannau darlledu a theatr. Mae ein cydweithrediad â National Theatre Wales a’r bartneriaeth agos â BBC Writersroom yn sicrhau y bydd ganddi amrywiaeth o lwyfannau i gyflwyno ei gwaith ac i gael ei chydnabod am ei sgiliau ysgrifennu.”

Meddai John McGrath, Cyfarwyddwr Artistig, National Theatre Wales:

“Rwyf wrth fy modd bod Kelly wedi ennill y wobr bwysig hon. Fel ysgrifennwr sy’n parhau yng nghamau cymharol gynnar ei gyrfa, mae cael ei dewis o blith detholiad o ymgeiswyr cryf ac mewn sawl achos eithaf profiadol yn gyflawniad penigamp. Mae Gwobr Ddrama Cymru unwaith eto wedi dangos cryfder y talentau dramatig sydd gennym yng Nghymru, ac amrywiaeth y lleisiau sy’n dod i’r amlwg. Mae National Theatre Wales yn falch iawn o fod wedi cael gweithio ochr yn ochr â BBC Cymru a BBC Writersroom i drefnu’r wobr hon.”

Roedd rhestr fer Gwobr Ddrama Cymru 2014, a ddewiswyd o blith dros 170 o ddramodwyr eraill o Gymru, hefyd yn cynnwys Jeremy Davies (Casnewydd), Alyn Farrow (Caerdydd) ac Alan Harris (Caerdydd). Am gyrraedd y rhestr fer byddant hwythau hefyd yn cael cyfle i ddatblygu sgript ynghyd â £1,000.

Katherine Chandler oedd enillydd cyntaf Gwobr Ddrama Cymru yn 2012. Enillodd cynhyrchiad Dirty Protest o’i sgript fuddugol Parallel Lines wobr y cynhyrchiad gorau yng Ngwobrau Adolygwyr Drama Cymru am 2013, ac enillodd ei drama Bird wobr y beirniaid yng nghystadleuaeth ysgrifennu dramâu Bruntwood. Aeth Katherine ymlaen i addasu Fairy Tales Terry Jones ar gyfer cynhyrchiad National Theatre Wales o Silly Kings ym mis Rhagfyr 2013. Yn 2015, bydd ei drama Hood yn cael ei pherfformio fel rhan o raglen Connections y National Theatre.

Nodiadau i Olygyddion:-

  • Bydd cyfle i gyfweld Kelly Jones yn stiwdios Roath Lock ar ôl y cyhoeddiad
  • Bydd lluniau o’r seremoni ar gael ar ôl 2pm (dydd Llun 15 Rhagfyr)

Gwaith blaenorol Kelly Jones

Hyfforddwyd Kelly fel perfformwraig ym Mhrifysgol Fetropolitan Abertawe ac ar ôl graddio canfu ei chariad at ysgrifennu. Arweiniodd hyn at ymuno â Rhaglen Ysgrifenwyr Ifanc Sherman Cymru ac amryw fentrau ysgrifennu eraill i hogi ei chrefft a datblygu ei llais. Er Ebrill 2013 pan benderfynodd adael ei swydd lawn amser i ganolbwyntio’n llwyr ar ei gyrfa ysgrifennu mae wedi gweithio gyda ac ar gyfer National Theatre Wales, Sherman Cymru a Dirty Protest yn ogystal â chael ei mentora gan y dramodwyr arobryn Tim Price, ac yn fwyaf diweddar gan Kath Chandler, a enillodd y wobr hon yn 2012.

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