Jennifer Lunn has been awarded the The Popcorn Writing Award 2020 for her play ‘Es and Flo’, and receives a cash prize of £2,500. The other Finalists are Matilda Ibini (awarded £1,500) and Chris Thompson (£1,000) with Camilla Whitehill receiving a Special Mention (£500).
The Popcorn Writing Award, with a prize fund of £5,500, was established in 2019 to champion fearless work at the annual Edinburgh Fringe festival which playfully and artistically questions and addresses current affairs, societal trends and contributes positively to public debate.
This year it is awarded to new plays that were scheduled to premiere at the cancelled Fringe and all eligible plays from the Traverse, Assembly, Pleasance, Underbelly, Summerhall and Gilded Balloon were considered for the award
The winner was selected by a 16-strong committee including Golden Globe winning Ruth Wilson, Olivier nominated producer Francesca Moody, singer/songwriter Aurora, Gonzalo Maza writer of the Academy Award winning ‘A Fantastic Woman’ and BAFTA-winning actress Wunmi Mosaku. The committee and the Popcorn Group said that all the winning plays displayed an emotional integrity and strength as well as a brilliant artistic flair.
‘Es and Flo’ by Jennifer Lunn, which was due to be performed at the Traverse Theatre, explores the moving story of a lesbian couple that have secretly been in love and living together for over 30 years when Es begins to show signs of dementia. It’s a story about generations of women and choosing your own family, kindness and forgiveness and discrimination as Flo is determined to make sure that she and Es are not parted.
This extract from ‘Es and Flo’ is performed by Sharon D. Clarke and Celia Imrie, directed by Emma Callander, co-Artistic Director of Theatre Uncut.
Jennifer Lunn said, It’s an absolute honour to receive this award especially in this strange year as we wait to be able to put the play and these characters in front of an audience. A huge thanks to The Popcorn Group for choosing a story celebrating a diverse and intersectional group of women and thanks to Wales Millennium Centre for their unstinting support of this production. And of course, the prize itself is the gift all writers need – time to write. Thank you so much!”
The extract from ‘BURN’ is performed by Kit Harington and Tuppence Middleton, directed by Out of Joint Artistic Director Kate Wasserberg.
The extract from ‘Little Miss Burden’ is performed by Saida Ahmed, Ani Nelson and Michelle Tiwo, directed by incoming co-Artistic Director of the Traverse Theatre, Debbie Hannan.
The extract from ‘Daddy’ is read by Rory Bremner, directed by Sarah Meadows, Artistic Director of Longsight Theatre Company.