At the heart of the Bruntwood Prize is collaboration and partnership – to support playwrights, to encourage people to tell stories, to see work on our stages and beyond. All our partners recognize the power of new work reaching far and wide and the importance of audiences engaging with that work.
We are extremely excited this year to extend the values and principles of the Prize beyond the shores of the UK and Ireland through invaluable partnerships with a range of international organisations who support and champion playwrights. The inaugural Bruntwood Prize International Award will be in partnership with BANFF Centre Playwrights Lab in Canada, Belvoir Theatre and Melbourne Theatre Company in Australia and Berkeley Rep and Playwrights Horizons in the USA.
The International Award is a totally new prize category, running parallel to the UK awards and open to playwrights invited by our international partners. This year, in collaboration with our international partners, the Bruntwood Prize is exploring International submissions for the first time. We hope to learn a huge amount in this Pilot year.
The Bruntwood Prize International Award is open to international playwrights invited to anonymously apply via our named partners. Unfortunately no other international submissions can be considered at this time and the partners will not be opening submission to unsolicited scripts. The Bruntwood Prize aspires to produce all winning plays. Therefore the recipient of the International Award will engage in a process of professional development with both the Royal Exchange Theatre and with the partner organisation who invited them to apply.
The Banff Centre Playwrights Lab in Canada
The development of PLOW and PARLIAMENT SQUARE have been supported by the Banff Centre Playwrights Lab which, in partnership with Bruntwood, offered playwrights a residency as a winner of a Judges Award. The Banff Centre Playwrights Lab offers Canadian and international playwrights an inspiring environment to work on their plays while surrounded by performing artists from across Canada and around the world.
Belvoir Theatre and Melbourne Theatre Company in Australia
Belvoir is a theatre company on a side street in Surry Hills, Sydney. When the theatre (originally called Nimrod) was threatened with redevelopment in 1984, more than 600 people formed a syndicate to buy the building and save this unique innercity performance space. Now under the leadership of Artistic Director Eamon Flack and Executive Director Sue Donnelly, Belvoir engages Australia’s most prominent and promising theatre-makers to realise an annual season of work that is innovative, dynamic, challenging and visionary. Belvoir has nurtured the talents of such renowned artists as Cate Blanchett, Toby Schmitz, Deb Mailman, Richard Roxburgh, Tommy Murphy, Lally Katz, Kate Mulvany, Simon Stone, Anne-Louise Sarks, Wesley Enoch, and former Belvoir Artistic Director Neil Armfield.
MTC is one of the major performing arts companies in Australia, and one of the largest theatre companies in the English-speaking world. Founded in 1953, MTC is also the oldest professional theatre company in Australia, and currently exists as a semi-autonomous department of the University of Melbourne. In 2017 they launched the NEXT STAGE Writers’ Program.
This new program is remarkable not simply for the significant increase in the annual number of commissions they will undertake and the financial resources devoted to writers and their plays, but for the meaningful length of engagement between writers and MTC. This new approach to playwriting and development will result in stronger, stage-ready plays that will enhance the fabric of Australian live storytelling.
Berkeley Rep and Playwrights Horizons in the USA
Berkeley Repertory Theatre has grown from a storefront stage to an international leader in innovative theatre. Known for its ambition, relevance, and excellence, as well as its adventurous audience, the nonprofit has provided a welcoming home for emerging and established artists since 1968. Over 5.5 million people have enjoyed nearly 500 shows at Berkeley Rep, which have gone on to win five Tony Awards, seven Obie Awards, nine Drama Desk Awards, one Grammy Award, and many other honors. Berkeley Rep received the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre in 1997. Its School of Theatre engages and educates some 20,000 people a year and helps build the audiences of tomorrow with its nationally recognized teen programs. Berkeley Rep’s bustling facilities – which also include the 400-seat Peet’s Theatre, the 600-seat Roda Theatre, and a spacious campus in West Berkeley – are helping revitalize a renowned city.
Playwrights Horizons is dedicated to cultivating the most important American playwrights, composers, and lyricists, as well as developing and producing their bold new plays and musicals. Tim Sanford became Artistic Director in 1996 and Leslie Marcus has been Managing Director since 1993. Under their decades of leadership, Playwrights builds upon its diverse and renowned body of work, counting 400 writers among its artistic roster. In addition to its onstage work each season, Playwrights’ singular commitment to nurturing American theater artists guides all of the institution’s multifaceted initiatives: our acclaimed New Works Lab, a robust commissioning program, an innovative curriculum at its Theater School, and more. Robert Moss founded Playwrights in 1971 and cemented the mission that continues to guide the institution today. André Bishop served as Artistic Director from 1981-1992. Don Scardino succeeded him and served until 1996. Over its 47-year history, Playwrights has been recognized with numerous awards and honors, including six Pulitzer Prizes, 13 Tony Awards, and 39 Obie Awards.
For more information on the new categories for the Bruntwood Prize 2019 please go to https://www.writeaplay.co.uk/how-do-i-enter/