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Bursary Scheme Opens for Playwrights and Directors

Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council and c21 Theatre Company are calling Borough-based early career Playwrights and Directors, with some professional experience, to apply for the opportunity to write or direct a new play under the expert teaching and mentorship of Dramaturg, Hanna Slattne and c21’s Artistic Director, Stephen Kelly.

Two Writers will be selected to take part in a 4-month development process, from December 2023 to April 2024 that includes: Skills-based Workshops, 1-2-1 Tutorials, Guest Playwright Seminars, Research & Development, Rehearsal and Final Showcase of their play. Two Directors will be selected to engage from February 2024 to April 2024 to develop knowledge in: directing new writing, the relationship between Dramaturg and Director and directing a professional creative and technical team towards a performance showcase.

The scheme offers a bursary of £3,000 each to two writers and £1,500 each to two directors. A showcase of two pieces of new writing will take place in April 2024 at The Courtyard Theatre, Newtownabbey / The Old Courthouse, Antrim.

Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor Mark Cooper commented,

“This is a fantastic opportunity for all of the creative individuals in the Borough who are just starting their career in Playwriting or Directing. The workshops, training and tutorials will be exceptionally beneficial for those who are wanting to take their careers to the next level, with the added benefit of up to £3000 bursary. If this is something that would be of interest to you or if you know anyone who has an early career in either of these professions, then make sure you get them to apply.”

Creative Director of c21 Theatre Company, Stephen Kelly also commented,

“This is a fantastic opportunity and one that the company is delighted to be involved in. c21 is based in the heart of the Borough and having just celebrated its 18th birthday, the timing is perfect to launch this programme. Nurturing local talent is at the heart of what we do, and we can’t wait to start.”

The project is also supported by the National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.

To be eligible for the programme, applicants must be resident in the borough of Antrim and Newtownabbey and be able to provide evidence of this through address and postcode.

We particularly welcome applications from under-represented groups.

To apply, please email Stephen Kelly E. c21theatre@gmail.com. Entries close at 5pm, 24 November 2023 and applicants will be notified by 6 December 2023.

Playwrights must be available to attend workshops on the following key dates:

  • 16 & 17 December 2023 (Intensive weekend)

Playwrights and Directors must be available to attend workshops on the following key dates:

  • 22 February 2024 (Draft 1 Script Read Through)
  • 26 & 27 March 2024 (R&D)
  • 22 - 28 April (Production Week and Performance)