The Felix Dexter Bursary

Category: Cross Platform; TV; Radio

The Felix Dexter Bursary | BBC Comedy Commissioning | Deadline: Friday 29th November 2019

Writers' Guidelines

The Felix Dexter Bursary aims to make a positive intervention to address an under-representation of black, Asian, minority ethnic professionals in comedy production and development in the broadcast industry. This training scheme is designed to find writers with fresh and unique points of view, who can help shape the future of comedy, whether in the BBC or elsewhere in the industry. It will provide a unique opportunity to gain experience in the programme making world with access to top tier production facilities where participants can learn and hone their writing craft across radio comedy, television comedy, panel shows and comedy entertainment shows.

What you need to submit:

  • A sample comedy/sitcom script of 30 pages/30 minutes maximum 
  • The application questions (saved as one single PDF or Word document)
  • Applications are anonymised so please don't include your name on the script or application questions 
  • A writing CV with a short profile biography

Application Questions:

Q1 – You must have a comedy/sitcom script idea or early draft that you wish to develop during the bursary.  In less than 60 words, what would be your elevator pitch? And what would be your comparison answer?  It’s like __________ meets _____________.

Example: My comedy is about a very accomplished, low ambition woman in her late 20’s living with her elderly mum in an assisted living community.  She wants to escape but family guilt and fear of getting what she wants is keeping her stuck in her boring life. 

It’s like The Mindy Project meets The Golden Girls.

Q2 – (In 200 words total) What has been your best writing experience to date and what has been your worst writing experience to date?

Q3 – (In 200 words each) Please critique two examples of British comedy programming from the last 6 months on any channel. Please describe one you enjoyed and one you felt could have been improved – and justify your answers; what would you have done differently?  

Answers to the above must be saved as one single PDF or Word document, with each question and answer clearly defined. (Do not include your name on this document).

Application Requirements and Eligibility:

  • A good knowledge of British comedy and comedy television in general
  • Experience of writing a script either a spec or commissioned
  • Some experience of writing to a brief set by others – to be outlined in your Writing CV
  • Excellent communication skills with the ability to express all issues and ideas clearly and concisely
  • Experience of working to a deadline – to be outlined in your Writing CV
  • Single and Duos can submit, but no writing teams
  • Entrants must submit a Writing CV document as well as a short profile bio
  • Entrants must be over the age of 18 at the time of submitting
  • Entrants need to be located in London for the duration of the traineeship
  • Entrants must be available to interview in London in early December 2019
  • We encourage applicants from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds
  • Applicants must be a UK resident or entitled to live and work in the UK for the dates of the scheme 
  • Submissions must be in the English language
  • You must not be employed by or be a live-in partner or immediate relative (i.e. mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, nephew or niece) of somebody employed by the BBC, by a BBC Group company or any person connected with the Felix Dexter Bursary or in a financial relationship with them.

How to Submit:

Attach your script, writing CV and Application questions to an email (no larger than 10MB) and send to: felixdexter.bursary@bbc.co.uk

Deadline: Friday 29th November 2019

Read the full Terms & Conditions of entry

Latest opportunities

  • The University of Southampton - Green Stories

    The University of Southampton - Green Stories

    Deadline: Various deadlines. Green Stories Writing Competitions are a free set of competitions with prizes, open to all. Writers are asked to write stories that present positive visions of what a sustainable society might look like, or integrate green characters, policies, solutions etc. in the backdrop of an otherwise mainstream story. Upcoming deadlines include TV Series (30 Nov), Short Film (26 March) and Screenplay (18 April).

  • International Radio Playwriting Competition

    International Radio Playwriting Competition

    Deadline: 31st January 2020. The International Radio Playwriting Competition 2020 - from the BBC World Service and British Council in partnership with Commonwealth Writers - is an opportunity for writers from outside the UK to tell their stories. It is open to new and established writers who live outside the UK and are aged over 18 on 31 January 2020.

  • Arundel Festival Theatre Trail 2020

    Arundel Festival Theatre Trail 2020

    Deadline: 31st January 2020. Writers are invited to submit plays for the 2020 Arundel Festival Theatre Trail, now in its twentieth year.

View all opportunities

Latest scripts

View all scripts

Follow @BBCWritersroom on Twitter