This year’s prize

Returning for 2017, the biennial Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting is Europe’s largest playwriting competition and highlights the importance of new writing for theatre and the value of nurturing playwrights and their craft.

A partnership between the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester and property company Bruntwood, the Prize is an opportunity for writers of any background and experience to enter unperformed plays to be judged by a panel of industry experts for a chance to be one of four winners and win part of a prize fund totaling £40,000. Since its inception in 2005, over 11,000 scripts have been entered, £208,000 has been awarded to 22 prize winning writers and 21 winning productions have been staged in 37 UK wide venues.

The competition is open to anyone over the age of sixteen, in the British Isles. All scripts are judged anonymously by a team of skilled readers and the final ten will be judged by this expert judging panel.

Each of the winners will enter into a development process with the Royal Exchange Theatre. The winning scripts, will be announced at an awards ceremony in Manchester this November.

In 2015 Katherine Soper became the fifth overall winner of the Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting. Her play ‘Wish List’ premiered at the Royal Exchange Theatre in 2016 before transferring to the Royal Court Upstairs (10 January – Saturday 11 February 2017).

Entries for the 2017 prize closed on June 5th. 


Key dates
  • 24 Jan 2017
    Open for submissions
  • 5 Jun 2017
    6pm - submission close
  • 3 Jul 2017
    Phase One Reading Complete
  • 7 Aug 2017
    Phase Two Reading Complete
  • 27 Sep 2017
    Longlist of Top 100 Plays Announced
  • 24 Oct 2017
    Shortlist Announced
  • 13 Nov 2017
    2017 Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting Ceremony
  • 29 Dec 2017
    Feedback sent to Longlist Plays

This year's judges