Sphinx Theatre Announces Full Details Of Sphinx 30 and £30,000 Funding For Female Playwrights

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Sphinx Theatre, the UK's longest established women's theatre company, has announced full details of Sphinx 30, its 30th anniversary programme. This includes providing £30,000 funding to support 30 female playwrights over the course of the next year, supported by Arts Council England funding and 15 leading theatres.

Newly announced partners for the Sphinx 30 programme include:

  • The Bush Theatre, London
  • Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse, Liverpool
  • Kali Theatre, London
  • Octagon Theatre, Bolton
  • Theatr Clwyd, Wales
  • Watford Palace Theatre, Watford

These partners join those previously announced:

The partnerships also include Sphinx working with some of the UK's most diverse theatre companies to support diversity and inclusivity in UK theatre, including the UK's leading disabled-led theatre company Graeae, Yellow Earth Theatre who work with British East Asian artists, Kali Theatre, who works with South Asian artists, and Red Ladder Theatre Company, Britain's leading radical theatre company, focusing on socially disadvantaged communities.

Each theatre and theatre company will co-sponsor, in partnership with Sphinx, a female playwright they would like to support to take part in the Sphinx Lab, a pilot new writing programme for female playwrights inspired by Sphinx Theatre's Literary Director Jennifer Tuckett's work at Yale School of Drama and the Women's Project (WP) Lab in New York.

The Lab will be taught by some of the UK's leading female playwrights including April De Angelis, whose plays include modern classic "Playhouse Creatures" and "My Brilliant Friend" at The National Theatre, Winsome Pinnock, author of "Leave Taking" at the Bush Theatre and the first black female playwright to be produced at The National Theatre, and Timberlake Wertenbaker, whose credits include modern classic "Our Country's Good". Other tutors on the Lab include Dame Rosemary Squire, co-founder of the Ambassador Theatre Group and Trafalgar Entertainment, Stephanie Sirr, Chief Executive at Nottingham Playhouse, Toni Racklin, Head of Theatre and Dance at the Barbican Centre, Brigid Larmour, Artistic Director of Watford Palace Theatre, and Sphinx Theatre's Artistic Director Sue Parrish and Literary Director Jennifer Tuckett, who has designed and run creative writing programmes for the BBC amongst other organisations .

The landmark Sphinx 30 programme will also include places for 10 female playwrights selected via an open call, to ensure new talent is supported, which will be fully funded by Sphinx with Arts Council England support. The final five places will be writers Sphinx Theatre has worked with over its 30 year history.

All Sphinx 30 playwrights will receive a £1000 seed commission in addition to their place on the Sphinx Lab.

Sue Parrish, Artistic Director of Sphinx Theatre, said: "We are delighted to announce full details for Sphinx 30, our 30th anniversary programme. We are particularly proud to be working with a diverse cohort of leading Theatre Partners from across the UK, which include the UK's leading disabled-led theatre company Graeae, and Yellow Earth and Kali who work with British East and South Asian artists to ensure we reach as many talented female playwrights as possible".

Jennifer Tuckett, Literary Director at Sphinx Theatre said: "In the climate of the coronavirus pandemic, we hope the £30,000 funding will provide important support for female playwrights at all stages of their careers. We are also looking forward to developing, supported by our Theatre Partners, plans for the Sphinx Lab which we hope will become an ongoing programme to support female playwrights in the UK, inspired by the Women's Project (WP) Lab in New York".

For more information on Sphinx 30 please go to www.sphinxtheatre.co.uk


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