Jerwood New Playwrights

Royal Court Theatre

The Jerwood New Playwright Programme is expanding to support more early-career playwrights over the next two years.

Jerwood New Playwrights is part of a longstanding partnership between Jerwood Arts and the Royal Court which spans over 25 years. Since 1994, the Jerwood New Playwrights programme has supported over 70 writers to have their plays produced in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs and the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs.

This programme is receiving new funding through the Jerwood Developing Artists Fund, to continue supporting the theatre’s work across three areas:

  • Writer Development will create a professional network of writers and artists to support writing group participants in their early career development.
  • Introduction to Playwriting Groups will provide early-career writers with the opportunity to grow their craft and develop confidence in their work.
  • Jerwood New Playwright will enable one early-career writer/artist the opportunity to become a Jerwood New Playwright and see their work produced in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court Theatre.

The programme has produced a collection of challenging and outspoken works which explore a variety of new forms and voices. Previous Jerwood New Playwright recipients have included Jasmine Lee-Jones (seven methods of killing kylie jenner), Chris Thorpe (Victory Condition), Alice Birch (Anatomy of A Suicide) and Charlene James (Cuttin’ It).

Lilli Geissendorfer, Director, Jerwood Arts said:

“Over 25 years, the Jerwood New Playwrights’ at the Royal Court has become a cornerstone of playwright development opportunities in the UK. We are exceptionally proud of the writers it has been able to support as they take their first plays from page to stage with the exceptional support of the Royal Court team. As the theatre looks ahead to new futures, we’re delighted to continue supporting the programme to evolve and provide the resources writers need to develop and thrive.”

Vicky Featherstone, Artistic Director, Royal Court Theatre said:

“Jerwood Arts’ commitment to developing artists is unrivalled and we are honoured to remain in partnership with them. This relationship has benefitted so many writers and as a result audiences and has had a real impact on the world of new-writing. As ever we are excited to see what the next writers supported by Jerwood will create and unleash into the world.”

The Royal Court Theatre’s Jerwood New Playwright Programme is supported by the Jerwood Developing Artists Fund.

Applications: Submissions for the Introduction to Playwrighting Group are now open, with a deadline of 30 June 2023. Find out more on the Royal Court website.

Anatomy of a Suicide, Alice Birch. Image credit Stephen Cummiskey.