Composer and sound designer Timothy X Atack wins 2017 Bruntwood playwriting prize
Bristol-based writer Timothy X Atack has been named the winner of the 2017 Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting.
Atack, who is also a composer and sound-designed Chris Goode’s current production of Jubilee, has won the main £16,000 prize for his play Heartworm.
His winning play was judged anonymously by eight industry figures including Russell T Davies, Lucy Prebble, Lyndsey Turner, Kirsty Lang, Alfred Enoch and Phil Porter.
Several of Atack’s previous plays have been adapted for radio, including The Morpeth Carol, which won the best drama prize at the 2014 Radio Academy Awards.
Atack said winning the prize was “the most amazing boost to my confidence as a writer and theatremaker”.
He added that he had entered the anonymous competition five times, and said: "The anonymity of the process allows you to keep working on things, to keep experimenting, to follow your instincts.
"It feels fantastic. I feel like I am in incredibly esteemed company."
To writers considering entering, he said: "It is worth every single time you entered into it, and it is worth every bit of work you put into it."
The biennial prize is open to any writer as long as they submit an original and unperformed play. This year, 1,898 were submitted.
Atack joins a list of Bruntwood-winning alumni that includes Duncan Macmillan, Alistair McDowall, Anna Jordan and Katherine Soper, who won in 2015.
Three other writers – Tim Foley, Laurie Nunn and Sharon Clark – were awarded judge’s prizes of £8,000 at a ceremony that took place at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester.
The Royal Exchange runs the prize with local property company Bruntwood.
The prize’s co-founder Michael Oglesby also gave two commendation awards to Joshua Val Martin and Rebecca Callard, who each take home £4,000.
Oglesby, who is chairman of Bruntwood, said: “Ambition, community and innovation are at the heart of everything we strive to achieve at Bruntwood and the Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting is central to our talent development work in the UK. This year we’ve seen a remarkable standard in entries to the competition.
“Our overall winner Timothy X Atack has produced a beautiful piece of work and we are thrilled to be supporting him and the other Judges’ Prize winners on their playwriting journey.”
Bruntwood Prize winners 2017
Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting
Timothy X Atack, Heartworm
Tim Foley, Electric Rosary
Laurie Nunn, King Brown
Sharon Clark, Plow
Joshua Val Martin, This Is Not America
Rebecca Callard, A Bit of Light