Iman Qureshi has won the 2018 Papatango New Writing Prize for her play The Funeral Director.
Qureshi won the 10th annual prize out of 1,384 submissions – a record number for the playwriting competition.
As part of the prize, The Funeral Director, an exploration of a gay muslim woman coming to terms with her identity, will have its world premiere in a four-week run at London’s Southwark Playhouse from October 31 to November 24.
Additionally, the play will be published by Nick Hern Books and Qureshi will receive 10% of the gross box office and a £6,000 commission and developmental support for a follow-up play.
At a ceremony at Shoreditch Town Hall on July 3, extracts were performed from the five shortlisted plays before an industry audience.
The other shortlisted plays were Legacy by Benedict Lombe, Lunatic 19s by Tegan McLeod, The Gyre by Toby King and The Lash by Kenny Emson. Qureshi said: “I’m bursting with delight, and so grateful to Papatango for taking a leap of faith on a story so very close to my heart.
“Winning this prestigious national prize reaffirms the fact that even stories deeply rooted in a specific culture or community have the power to appeal to our shared humanity.”
Papatango’s artistic director George Turvey said Qureshi’s voice “really stood out at every stage of the judging process”.