In 2014, we worked with Liverpool Hope University on an exciting new project aimed to encourage new writing and give more people an opportunity to work within the theatre industry. This exciting new project became The Liverpool Hope Playwriting Prize; a competition looking for the next great comedy play. The winner, Katie Mulgrew, received £10,000 and the chance of having her work performed right here in Liverpool!
The winning play, Omnibus, was produced at The Unity Theatre in June 2017 to great critical acclaim. This prompted the start of a new working relationship between Liverpool’s Royal Court and the Unity Theatre with support for the show coming from Arts Council England.
In 2017 we were able to announce our second winner, Simon Bradbury’s The Last Act of Love of J B Moliere. Runner up Gerry Linford’s play A Prayer to Saint Cajetan was performed in the Royal Court for the first time under the title The Miracle of Great Homer Street starring Les Dennis.
This year’s play was chosen through a process by which a panel of experienced readers whittled down the entries to a final shortlist of 10 scripts. These scripts were then reviewed by our panel of judges including: Actor and Comedian Les Dennis, Playwright and Director John Godber OBE, London 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony Co-Creator Frank Cottrell-Boyce, Writer and Trustee Maurice Bessman, Catherine Jones from Arts City Liverpool, Positive Impact Managing Director Barbara Phillips, Liverpool’s Royal Court Chief Executive Kevin Fearon, and Deputy Head of the Department of Drama, Dance and Performance Studies at Liverpool Hope University Dr John Bennett.
The competition closed on Sunday 22 July 2018. The finalists have been selected and the winner will be announced at a ceremony on the 13 May 2019, here at the Royal Court.
For more details about the competition including the Terms and Conditions, please visit the website here.