New drama prize announced

The University of Edinburgh  logoThe National Theatre of Scotland and the University of Edinburgh are to create a new £10,000 annual prize for original writing in theatre – the James Tait Black Award for Drama.

The award, for the best original new play written in English, Scots or Gaelic anywhere in the world will complement the existing prizes already given to new works of fiction and biography.

To qualify, a play must have been originally written in English (including all standard and non-standard varieties) Scots or Gaelic, first produced in 2011 or 2012, and performed by a professional company.

Judges will award the accolade to an original voice in theatre, one that they feel has made a significant and unique contribution to the art form. The prize is open to any new work by playwrights from any country, and at any stage in their career. The judges will be students and staff of the University of Edinburgh’s School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures and representatives from the National Theatre of Scotland.

Theatre companies and agents are invited to nominate scripts by 28th February 2013.

The first winner of the annual award will be announced in August 2013, and the National Theatre of Scotland will perform the winning play as a public reading during the festivals period in Edinburgh.

About the James Tait Black Prizes
Founded in 1919, the James Tait Black Prizes are Britain’s oldest literary awards and one of the world’s most prestigious. Past winners include DH Lawrence, Graham Greene, Huxley and Ian McEwan. This is the first time the prizes have been extended to dramatic work.

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About National Theatre of Scotland

In its short life, the National Theatre of Scotland has already earned a significant national and international reputation for its daring and originality. The National Theatre of Scotland was established in 2006 and has created over 200 productions. Being a theatre without walls and building-free, the Company presents a wide variety of work that ranges from large-scale productions to projects tailored to the smallest performing spaces. In addition to conventional theatres, the Company has performed in airports, schools, tower blocks, community halls, ferries and forests. The National Theatre of Scotland creates much of its work in partnership with theatre-makers, companies, venues and participants across the globe. From extraordinary projects with schools and communities, to the ground-breaking online 5 Minute Theatre to landmark pieces such as The James Plays by Rona Munro - the National Theatre of Scotland’s aspiration is to tell the stories that need to be told and to take work to wherever audiences are to be found.

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