Trinity College London Playwriting Festival Set for St. James Theatre, Now thru 10 May

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Trinity College London Playwriting Festival Set for St. James Theatre, Now thru 10 May

A four-day theatre festival is coming to the St. James Theatre now through 10 May 2014. The 2014 International Festival of Playwriting and Performance celebrates the winners of Trinity College London's 2013-14 International Playwriting Competition.

The festival will feature the productions of the winning plays from this year's competition as well as productions of prize winning plays from past competitions. The 2013-14 winners will be presented with their awards in a special prize giving ceremony at the evening performance of their plays on the final day of the festival.

A number of workshops, musical performances and other events will run alongside the plays including performances and activities for primary and secondary schools. There will also be a day of activities for budding writers.

This year's winning playwrights, Sally Hardy from Australia and William Siegfried from Austria, will both travel to London to see their plays staged as the headline performances.

Hardy's Gone Viral was the winning play for teenage audiences and is about a young girl dealing with the pressures of being a teenager while coming to terms with the impending loss of her terminally ill father.

Virtual Enchantment, written by Siegfried, won the Trinity award for best play for young performers and is a modern day fairy tale for the internet age. It will be performed by a class of students from Hermitage Primary in Tower Hamlets.

The Belinda Tree by John Moorhouse from the United Arab Emirates was a runner-up play for teenage audiences in Trinity's 2012 playwriting competition. Normal, by Paul Wallis from South Africa, won the same category in 2010. The plays will be performed by talented young actors from across London.

Wednesday 7 May is secondary schools' day, including a writing workshop titled 'Shakespeare as a new writer' led by award winning playwright Ché Walker and performances from the 2013 Shakespeare Schools Festival.

Thursday 8 May is a day for writers, with four workshops scheduled alongside the day's plays. The day will start with a panel discussion about writing theatre reviews, involving reviewers from media outlets including The Stage and the Guardian. Acclaimed children's playwright David Wood OBE will speak about the practicalities of writing plays for young people, and last year's International Playwriting Competition winner Christina Maiden will also give a talk about her experience of writing plays for young performers.

Friday 9 May is a fun, interactive and educational day for primary school children and teachers. There will be two short workshops for children as well as an optional workshop from the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

Saturday 10 May is the festival's finale: the playwriting gala. There will be a range of activities and performances for all ages, including performances of the two winning plays from this year's competition.

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