The Women’s Prize for Playwriting opens today for submissions for the 2021 Prize, closing on 12 July at 5pm. The Women’s Prize for Playwriting is designed to celebrate and support exceptional playwrights who identify as female by providing them with a national platform. Any person of 16 years or older who is resident in the UK and Ireland and identifies as female can enter. The Prize is for a full-length play (defined as over 60 minutes in length), written in English, and the winning playwright wins £12,000. For further details, please visit www.womensprizeforplaywriting.co.uk.
The mission of The Women’s Prize for Playwriting is to address the inequality in the number of plays written by women and men on major stages in the UK. In 2018, only 26% of new plays on main stages in Britain were by women. This prize is designed to level the playing field and to honour and raise the profile of work by playwrights who identify as female.
The Women’s Prize for Playwriting has been created by Ellie Keel Productions (EKP) and Paines Plough, with principal partner 45North and in association with Sonia Friedman Productions. Sponsored by Samuel French Ltd, a Concord Theatricals company, who are the official publishing partner of the prize. The founding sponsor of the Prize was PER People.
The judges for this year’s Prize are Arifa Akbar, Mel Kenyon (Chair), Lucy Kirkwood, Winsome Pinnock, Jasmine Lee-Jones, Indhu Rubasingham, Jenny Sealey, Nina Steiger, Nicola Walker and Jodie Whittaker.
In its inaugural year two First Prizes of £12,000 were awarded to Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me by Amy Trigg and You Bury Me by Ahlam. The world première of Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me is the first production in Kiln Theatre’s reopening season, running from 21 May – 12 June, with press night on 26 May; and also announced today, Audible will produce the audio production of the play.
Ellie Keel said “I’m delighted to be propelled into Year 2 of The Women’s Prize for Playwriting by such positive news for our First Prize winner from last year, Amy Trigg. Amy’s play Reasons You Should(n’t) Love Me will have a full run at Kiln Theatre and will be produced for audio by Audible. With the help of our excellent partner organisations, this year we’ll be equally ambitious for our winners, as we strive for proper gender equality in the writers of plays for national stages. We can’t wait to read the brilliant plays by women that we know are out there.”
Sonia Friedman said “SFP is delighted to be part of the second year of the Women’s Prize for Playwriting. In these difficult and complex times, it feels more important than ever to champion underrepresented voices and find vital, new stories for our stages. This brilliant initiative has already discovered some extraordinary work, and we are very excited to see what the prize brings to light in 2021.”