ORIGINAL THEATRE COMPANY ANNOUNCES
JUDGING PANEL FOR BRAND-NEW
ORIGINALS PLAYWRITING AWARD
Original Theatre Company today announces the judging panel for their new playwrighting prize, the Originals Playwriting Award – Mike Bartlett, Sarah Butcher, Angel Coulby, Jack Holden, Nick Marston, Dafydd Rogers, Abdul Shayek and Rachel Tackley.
Aimed at emerging and early career playwrights, the submissions window closes at 10am on Monday 9 May, accepting new works from writers across the UK, open to anyone above the age of 18.
Mike Bartlett said today, “Theatre thrives when a new, provocative, unexpected writer arrives – bringing a new perspective, experience or imagination (or often all three) to an audience. It’s what audiences crave – to step outside their own worlds and enter someone else’s. To expand their understanding.
“I wanted to take part in the Originals Playwriting Award, as it’s a great encouragement for writers to write, to have a go and get the script finished and sent off. It can be very hard starting off as a writer but there is also a freedom at that early stage – that all rules are there to be broken. You are the radical and the breath of fresh air. Show us how it should be done. I can’t wait to read them.”
Judged by a panel of acclaimed industry experts, the winner of the Award will receive a cash prize of £7,000, with three further runners up receiving £2,000 each. Launched in collaboration with Riverside Studios, each of the four plays will receive a script-in-hand performance at the venue, which will additionally be filmed and streamed live by North South.
Plays can be submitted via the Original Theatre Company website: https://bit.ly/Originals2022Award.
Sarah Butcher is a director and producer of theatre, film and digital arts. She is Co-Creative Director of North South, a production company specialising in stage to screen and an artist for award-winning non zero one, who make interactive experiences for audiences mediated by digital technologies.
Mike Bartlett is a multi-award-winning writer for both stage and screen. Having begun his career in theatre, he’s picked up numerous awards for his plays, including Olivier Awards for King Charles III (best new play, 2015), Bull (Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre, 2015) and Cock (Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre, 2010).
He currently has 3 plays running in London – The 47th at The Old Vic, Scandaltown at the Lyric Hammersmith, and Cock at the Ambassadors Theatre.
His first foray into television, The Town, earned him a BAFTA Breakthrough Talent nomination. Then in 2015 he caused a sensation with his smash hit miniseries Doctor Foster. The first series was BAFTA nominated for Best MiniSeries and Best Writer in 2015, and won Best New Drama at the 2016 National Television Awards, Best Drama Series at the 2016 Broadcast Awards, and Outstanding Newcomer for British Television Writing at the British Screenwriting Awards. The second series went on to win Best Drama at the National Television Awards in 2018. His television adaptation of his play King Charles III was released in 2017, and was BAFTA nominated for Best Single Drama.
Mike’s 6-part mini-series Life (Drama Republic), starring Alison Steadman and Victoria Hamilton premiered on BBC in Autumn 2020. His other recent original TV work includes Sticks and Stones (Tall Story Pictures/ITV, 2019), Press (Lookout Point/BBC, 2018) and Trauma (ITV, 2018).
Angel Coulby is a British actress of Afro-Guyanese decent. She was born and grew up in London and studied Acting at the Queen Margaret University. She is known for appearing in popular films and television series including Holby City, The Bill, New Street Law, Undercover, Man in an Orange Shirt, Moving On, Innocent, The Tunnel,and most recently in AppleTV+ thriller series Suspicion. She is perhaps best known for portraying the character of Guinevere “Gwen” in the BBC fantasy series Merlin.
For theatre her work includes The Forest (Hampstead Theatre), Albion (Almeida Theatre), Good People (Hampstead Theatre/Noël Coward Theatre), and A Statement of Regret (National theatre).
Jack Holden is an Olivier-nominated writer and actor. His debut play Cruise premièred at the Duchess Theatre, London in Summer 2021, reopening the West End to critical acclaim, and was nominated for the Oliver Award for Best New Play 2022.
He took part in the Royal Court Young Writers Programme in 2013. He is currently developing original scripted dramas with Fremantle, Emanata Studios and Metro International.
As an actor, he can be seen as series regulars Kevin in John Morton’s Ten Percent (Amazon) and Adam in Stefan Golaszewski’s Marriage (BBC One, Summer 2022). He has also featured in British independent films The Levelling and Journey’s End. He has appeared in television drama for BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Starz, and on stage at the National Theatre, the RSC and in the West End.
In addition, he has produced award-winning short films and plays with his company, Watersmeet Productions.
Nick Marston is Chairman of the film, theatre and TV department of the literary and talent agency Curtis Brown, where he represents writers and directors as well as literary material for screen.
Some of the playwrights whose careers he nurtured from an early stage include Conor McPherson, Enda Walsh, Mark O’Rowe and Jez Butterworth.
He is also CEO of Cuba Pictures and has made many films and TV productions, including Boy A, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, London Road and McMafia.
Dafydd Rogers is the Executive Director of Cambridge Arts Theatre. He is also a multi-Olivier and Tony Award winning Producer.
He began his career in theatre administration, managing such places as Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, the Royal Court Theatre and in the West End, the Shaftesbury and Playhouse Theatres.
He has for many decades, commissioned, created and commercially produced theatrical shows presenting them in the West End, on Broadway, in the UK and all over the world.
Abdul is Artistic DIrector and Joint CEO of Tara Theatre, the oldest global majority-led theatre company in the UK. He was the founding Artistic Director and CEO of FIO, the first global majority-led theatre company in Wales. He has also been an associate at National Theatre Wales.
He holds a BA in International Theatre Studies from University of East London. He trained at the National Theatre Directors’ Course, Contact Theatre’s Live and Direct, Old Vic New Voices and ATC Directors Programme. He has previously worked as associate or assistant director at Theatre Royal Stratford East and English National Opera.
He is a member of British Council’s Arts and Creative Economy Advisory Group, a trustee of The Space, Told By An Idiot and dance company Impelo. He was a Clore Cultural Leadership Fellow (2013-14), during which he spent time at Film4 and M&C Saatchi. He was also named in The Stage 25 (25 theatre makers who will go on to great things over the next quarter-century).
As a director and theatre maker his work is rooted in creating innovative productions, projects and experiences, alongside identifying and developing artists and new audiences. He has worked across theatre, opera, television and film. He has staged contemporary classics and adaptations of novels. In his first 18 months at Tara Theatre, he has created an audio walking project in response to the pandemic which will be touring UK festivals, commissioned 12 new monologues with national and international writers and made a site-specific gig theatre piece. He has also led or supported the development and delivery of a range of local, national and international artist and sector development initiatives.
This spring he is working on Migrations a new opera with Welsh National Opera. In the autumn he will be directing Silence at the Donmar Warehouse in a co-production with Tara Theatre, and in winter making a virtual reality experience called Amma.
As well as being the Creative Director of Riverside, Rachel Tackley is also a freelance producer and theatre consultant. She has enabled and produced productions in London, in regional theatre and all over the world; and has worked extensively in both the commercial and not-for –profit sectors. Recently she worked for ATG Productions and Chichester Festival Theatre and before that was Director of English Touring Theatre. She is a director of Harper Tackley whose current and recent clients include Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Roald Dahl Story Company, SOLT/UK Theatre, Malvern Theatres, Trafalgar Entertainment, Arts Council England, Delfont MacIntosh, Royal Borough of Greenwich, Cambridge Arts Theatre, WKCDA in Hong Kong, Birmingham Rep and Nottingham Playhouse. Rachel sits on the Boards of Tall Stories and Lyric Hammersmith Productions.