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THE PLAYMARKET eBULLETIN - MAY 2016
News and opportunities for New Zealand Playwrights.
eBULLETIN


MAY 2016


Wikipedia Edit-a-thon at Playmarket. Image: Claire O'Loughlin

"They wanted to kill us, and didn’t want us to even get out of the delivery room. They believed we would ruin the theatre because we would bring all these appalling concerns about politics and the wider world into an art form they thought should be fun and light." David Hare

Kia ora <<First Name>>

Arts organisations throughout the country have been meeting and planning coordinated responses to the fall in Lotteries funding. If you have not had contact with this there are a couple of articles here and here that will help you get a picture of what is happening. Please consider writing to your local MP and the Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage. Falling funding impacts on artists through loss of earnings such as commissioning income and less activity in development of new works. This will also have negative economic impact on regions and communities where arts activity may be reduced as a result of less funding; we will feel the impact on investment already made, including on international and market development.
 
On a happier note Playmarket is excited to help Auckland Writers Week provide access to international playwright David Hare. There was a fast response from client writers to get their hands on the masterclass tickets. He is one of the legendary writers of our times. I hope many of you take the opportunity to hear him speak. His recent memoir makes for enlightening reading.
 
You will probably be aware that Playmarket has been attending the annual Playwriting Australia Play Festival for the last few years. This is a wonderful development showcase seen by literary managers and management representatives as well as a wonderful gathering of Australia’s playwrights. Two weeks ago I was on leave in Sydney but took a small amount of time out to complete arrangements with Playwriting Australia for us to showcase three of our plays in this year’s Play Festival in July. We will reveal details in the next few weeks.
 
Work continues on fine-tuning a partnership with NZ Writers Guild to expand our Brown Ink and Asian Ink programmes. I expect to be able to supply full details in the next bulletin.
 
We held a second Wikipedia Edit-a-thon in Wellington last weekend and those that attended helped us succeed in getting even more New Zealand playwrights onto Wikipedia. It is a simple process but can be fearlessly challenged so learning the rules (including that you can’t put yourself onto Wikipedia) is important. I am looking for us to hold a further Edit-a-thon in Auckland in future.
 

Undertaking this exercise reminded me of the representation of women in NZ theatre and you may be interested to read the statistics we have put together of work staged here over the last few years and how much work written by women and writers of Māori and Pasifika heritage has found its way onstage in recent years. Read all about it here.
 
We have already received way more applications for our biennial retreat at Strathean June 21-28 than we can accommodate. This is a big tick for the need to provide such an opportunity. Applications close tomorrow and ten playwrights will be selected and informed in the next few days.
 
I am thrilled that Auckland Live are again partnering with us to present a celebration of our Playwrights b4 25 competition. We announce the short-listed plays below and the winner will be announced at the event in two weeks.
At that event we will present short excerpts from the shortlisted plays.
 
Now it’s time to get those submissions together for the Plays for the Young competition. My, how fast the year is flying by….


Nga mihi mahana
Murray Lynch - Director of Playmarket


NEWS

PLAYWRIGHTS b4 25
Playmarket is excited to announce the shortlist of our Playwrights b4 25 Competition.

Courtney Brown - The First Time
James Cain - Movers
Andrew Gunn - Potato Stamp Megalomaniac
Nathan Joe - Like Sex
Turene Jones - I Ain't Mad At Cha
Timote Mapuhola - Broken Pieces
Albert Mateni - Hearts of Men
Finnius Teppett - My Dad's Boy
James van Dyk - The Lazarus Lottery

Ben Wilson - Call Me Bukowski

The competition winners will be announced at a function at The Herald Theatre, Auckland Live on Monday 16 May 2016.
We'll be sending out invitations for the event shortly - if you'd like to attend please email us here and we'll get you on the list. We're pleased to present this event in partnership with Auckland Live.


AUCKLAND THEATRE COMPANY NEXT STAGE
Auckland Theatre Company’s Literary Unit is calling for submissions of full length plays, either original works or adaptations, for its annual national festival of new work.
The Next Stage is one of the most well-resourced professional play development processes in New Zealand. Selected plays receive a 10 day workshop followed by a season of 2 public presentations 18 - 20 November 2016.
Plays which have been part of The Next Stage and gone on to receive professional productions by ATC include: A Doll’s House by Emily Perkins, Paniora! by Briar Grace-Smith, Trees Beneath the Lake and On the Upside Down of the World by Arthur Meek, Black Confetti by Eli Kent, At the Wake and My Name Is Gary Cooper by Victor Rodger and Le Sud by Dave Armstrong.
Work by playwrights living in New Zealand and resident playwrights living abroad is eligible. Playwrights must be available to be in Auckland for the duration of the workshop 7 – 20 November.
Submissions close 18 July 2016
For more details see their website here.

AUCKLAND WRITERS FESTIVAL
The Festival runs from 10 - 15 May 2016. Client appearances include Fiona Farrell, Greg McGee, Jacob Rajan, John Smythe, Ella West, Damien Wilkins, and Witi Ihimaera alongside legendary British playwright David Hare.
David Hare will be in conversation with Simon Wilson on Saturday 14 May at 6pm and a reading of his play Skylight will follow on Sunday 15 May at 3:45pm.
See here for the full programme.

 

The 2015 Playmarket Annual
Email us here if you'd like a copy or view it online here.



OPPORTUNITIES


PLAYS FOR THE YOUNG COMPETITION
We are searching for the best new plays to inspire and excite young audiences.
Let your imagination run riot! It could be an original story or an adaptation of a classic tale, hilarious or heartfelt. It could be a play for adults to perform to children or a play for young actors to perform themselves.
We’re also keen to read any work created specifically for the classroom, whether by teachers or students themselves.
There are three categories and a winner will be awarded in each category.
Plays written for:

  • 3 - 8 year-olds
  • 8 - 12 year-olds
  • teenagers

Submissions close 1 August  2016
See our website here for more details.



EAT GRANTS

Applications are now open for the 2016 Emerging Artists Trust Grants. EAT grants are for Wellington projects by emerging artists in theatre, visual arts and film.
Theatre: up to $1000
Visual Arts: up to $1000
Film: up to $3000
Submissions close 1 June 2016
See their website here for more details.


THE UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO COLLEGE OF EDUCATION/CNZ CHILDREN'S WRITER IN RESIDENCE

The residency allows writers to work full time in a compatible environment among colleagues who are concerned with the teaching of reading and literature to children.
The annual residency is for a six month period between February and August and includes an office within the College and remuneration of $28,000..
Applications close 1 June 2016
See the website here for more information.


CREW 353: WRITING FOR THEATRE
Applications are now open for Crew 353 - Writing for Theatre at the International Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University. The 2nd Trimester course is convened by Gary Henderson and provides grounding in the art and craft of writing scripts for live performance.
Applications close 21 June 2016
See here for more details.



MICHAEL KING CENTRE YOUNG WRITERS' PROGRAMME

Writing for Stage and Screen with Briar Grace-Smith will be held in Auckland on Saturday 2nd July.
Classes are limited to twenty students aged 15 and above. Students can register for a place by emailing here and writing Briar Grace-Smith Master Class in the subject line of the email. In the body of the email, write your mobile number, school, English teacher and year group.

CNZ CLOSING DATES
15 July - Quick Response
2 September - Arts Grant
2 September - Todd New Writers Bursary
4 November - Quick Response

PLAYMARKET DATES 2016
1 August - Plays for the Young submissions close
1 December  - Adam NZ Play Award submissions close for 2017

ARTICLES

FIXATION ON BOX OFFICE HITS IS KILLING BRITISH THEATRE, SAYS DAVID HARE
Dalya Alberge for The Observer
Sir David Hare has warned that an obsession with box office success is having a detrimental effect on British theatre and distorting decisions about which plays are staged.
Read more here

“THE BOOK DIDN’T SELL AND YES, I WAS MEAN-SPIRITED ENOUGH TO REJOICE”: AN ESSAY ON THE DARK ARTS OF BOOK EDITING
Stephen Stratford for The Spinoff
One of New Zealand’s best and most illustrious book editors, Stephen Stratford (“I am a polite person, mostly”), vents about having to deal with writers and publishers.
Read more here

COMMITTED TO NOT KNOWING: LESSONS FROM BOOMERANG
Will Arbey for HowlRound
Playwright Will Arbery shares his experience working with Boomerang Dance Company and how movement informs his writing process.
Read more here

CRITICISM SO WHITE? HERE’S HOW TO CHANGE THAT
Diep Tran for American Theatre
How theatre critics can use their words, and their status, to be more inclusive of both theatre artists and a diverse new generation of journalists.
Read more here

'POVERTY PORN': HOW MIDDLE-CLASS THEATRES DEPICT BRITAIN'S POOR
Lyn Gardner for The Guardian
Plays such as Boy, Re:Home and Yen serve up downtrodden lives for wealthy audiences – and can verge on cultural tourism. But presented carefully, they’re essential reminders of the brutal inequality in modern life.
Read more here

WHY BROADWAY IS SO WHITE, PART 1: REAL ESTATE, NEPOTISM AND DAVID MAMET
Lee Seymour for Forbes
Inside the structural biases of race on Broadway.
Read more here and part two here

FROM PULITZER TO POPCORN: WHY ANNIE BAKER IS MAKING THE THEATRE WORLD PAUSE FOR THOUGHT
Hermione Hoby for The Guardian
An interview with award-winning playwright Annie Baker.
Read more here

DO ACTORS FROM HAMILTON DESERVE TO BE PAID ROYALTIES?
Chris Jones for the Chicago Tribune
An announcement that that the original cast of the hit musical Hamilton will receive royalty payments from the hit Broadway show sent some shock waves through the commercial theatre industry .
Read more here

WHAT'S ON?

Stag Weekend
by Dan Bain and Brendon Bennetts

Centrepoint 1 April – 14 May 2016
A stag party hunting trip to the Tararuas for four overconfident and under-qualified city boys becomes increasingly dangerous - and hilarious - as they fumble towards discovering what it means to be a Kiwi bloke in 2016. It's an unwise combination of boys, beer and bush. Everything that can go wrong does go wrong. The hangover from this stag weekend will stay with them forever.


Joyful and Triumphant
by Robert Lord

Circa Theatre 2 April – 7 May 2016
This outstanding award-winning New Zealand play returns to celebrate Circa’s 40th birthday Anniversary. Spanning forty years of Christmas Days from the 40s to the 80s in the lives of the small-town Bishop Family, as they struggle and cavil and cuddle.



Matthew, Mark, Luke and Joanne
by Carl Nixon

The Court Theatre 9 April – 7 May 2016
It’s 9.55pm on a Tuesday and Matthew, a trendy advertising executive, has just had a revelation in the gluten free, organic and ethnic food aisle of the local supermarket. One that will change his life and the lives of those close to him. A sexy, sophisticated comedy full of twists and turns that takes a light-hearted look at relationships and moral dilemmas in 2016.

Guji Guji
by Chih-Yuan Chen adapted for the stage by Peter Wilson

Little Dog Barking on tour 11 April – 13 May 2016
A simple and beautiful story about being different, bullying and family love. A strange egg rolls into a duck’s nest. Mother Duck, hatches the egg and the strangest looking duck you have ever seen emerges from the egg. His first words are Guji Guji and that becomes his name. Based on the popular children’s book of the same name.

A Man Walks Into A Bar
by David Geary

Off the Avenue at The World Bar, Sydney, NSW, Australia 21 April – 7 May 2016
An aburdist comedy about the types of people you meet in a bar. Man and Woman stumble on an open mic night. They have a broken relationship in their past and battle it out onstage. Their weapons? Jokes based on the classic form, “A man walks into a bar…”. They duel and drink, breaking out to tell their stories and the stories of many others who have spent time in bars.

Skin Tight [Te Tenir Contre Moi]
by Gary Henderson

Théâtre L’instant at Théâtre Prospero, Montreal, Canada 26 April – 14 May 2016
One of New Zealand's most beloved plays, Skin Tight, is a sensual love story drawing from the classic Denis Glover poem 'The Magpies'. Translated into French by Xavier Mailleux.



Niu Sila
by Oscar Kightley and Dave Armstrong

The Fortune Theatre 30 April – 21 May 2016
In 1970s suburban New Zealand, six-year-old Ioane Tafioka, fresh off the boat from the Islands, moves in next door to Peter Burton. Instantly becoming best friends, they spend every day together. As the boys become teenagers they succumb to their stereotypical paths, drifting apart, until a chance reunion twenty years later forces them to confront their ghosts of years past.

Ophelia Thinks Harder
by Jean Betts

The Lord Lackbeards on Tour 1 May – 3 June 2016
“How come I turned into a woman!!? Can’t I just stay a person?” Based on Hamlet, but with all the good lines reassigned, Ophelia Thinks Harder looks at the famous play from Ophelia’s point of view. Betts questions what it means to be a woman at Elsinore - or anywhere else. Pushed and pulled by all the men (and women) in her life, Ophelia has to figure out her own path.

Wheeler’s Luck
by Nigel Collins, Toby Leach and Damon Andrews

Southside Players at Theatre Royal, Hobart, TAS, Australia 4 – 14 May 2016
Cox Point, where Nora Cox lived her whole life, has been bequeathed to the residents of her beloved Bell End. But when mainlander Richard Lush speeds into town and announces his plan for a big development, the community is divided. After a big night at Andy’s Tavern, a passionate town meeting, and a brawl, mates are against mates and it all rides on a bareback horse race.

My Dad's Boy
by Finnius Teppett

BATS 26 May – 4 June 2016
A young man writes a play about his father, trying to figure him out. Is he a good dad? A bad one? Does he even know there’s a difference? When his own girlfriend gets pregnant though, the writer is faced with fatherhood himself. Highly Commended - Adam NZ Play Award 2016.


Sham
by Jess Sayer

The Basement 31 May – 10 June 2016
The only thing Meryl and her sister ever shared was the ability to make each other absolutely miserable. And now, after twenty years - guess who’s coming for dinner? A blistering black comedy peppered with vicious wit and emotional combat, Sham unflinchingly explores the fallout of a family. A new play by Jess Sayer.

No Holds Bard
by Natalie Medlock, Dan Musgrove and Michael Hurst

Royale Productions at Baycourt, Tauranga 3 – 4 June 2016
The show is over, the audience has left, and Hamlet comes home to his dingy flat to face the final curtain.  But can he make up his mind to do it?  Hilarity ensues when Macbeth, King Lear and Othello arrive to help the hapless prince decide whether to be or not to be … or not. No Holds Bard is an outrageous – and at times profound – view into one actor’s attempt at self-destruction.

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