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 receives £10,000 and the chance of having their work performed right here in Liverpool!
The 2015 winning play, Omnibus by Katie Mulgrew, 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.
The 2019 winner was Colin Downland, whose script ‘Headless’ is still in development with the Royal Court. Set in a primary school on the morning of an Ofsted inspection, chaos reigns as the head is found locked in the toilet with a bottle of whiskey.
The winner of the 2022 Liverpool Hope Playwriting Prize was Lawrence Quilty for his play ‘Peter Byrne Is Standing Here’. Long standing left wing councillor Peter Byrne has been ousted in a local by-election. The time has come for him to leave the office and his only option is to step down gracefully. Well, the other option is barricade himself into the office armed with a pistol and start a revolution.
The dates for the 2024 prize are yet to be announced. All reviewing and selection will be refereed anonymously. Entrants must be over the age of 18 and reside in either the UK or the Republic of Ireland.
For more details about the competition including the Terms and Conditions, please visit the website here.