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BBC World International Radio Playwriting Competition 2018


Would you like to win £2,200 sterling, a trip to London and have your play broadcast across the world on BBC World Service? If so, the 2018 International Radio Playwriting Competition is now open to entries!

Application Deadline: 21st January 2018

To Be Taken At (Country): London, UK

About the Award: What story might they like to hear? What new world can you introduce them to? Tell us stories with imagination and passion. Find your voice and use your voice.

The global competition, hosted by BBC World Service and the British Council, in partnership with co-producers The Open University, offers the unique opportunity for playwrights to use the medium of radio drama to reach an international audience.

This year the two first prizes can come from either the English As A First Language or the English As A Second Language category. Both winners will attend an award ceremony in London and see their plays recorded for broadcast on BBC World Service.

A third award – the Georgi Markov prize – celebrates the most promising script from the competition’s shortlist, in honour of BBC World Service journalist and writer Georgi Markov (1929-1978). The winner of this prize will also travel to London for the award ceremony and spend two weeks being mentored by BBC Radio Drama and BBC World Service.

The last competition attracted entries from a record 112 countries, with Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Brazil, Canada, Nigeria, India, Australia, South Africa, Jamaica and the USA being on the shortlist. To mark this year’s launch, The Day Dad Stole A Bus, by Brazilian writer Péricles Silveria (the winner of last year’s English As A Second Language prize) will be broadcast again on Saturday 14 October on BBC World Service.

Type: Contest

Eligibility: Anyone aged 18 or over and living outside the UK – whether you’re an established writer, completely new or anywhere in between.

Number and Value of Awards: 

  • There are three prizes to be won.
  • Two first prizes – for the best radio plays by writers with either English as their first language or English as their second language. Both winners’ plays will be broadcast on BBC World Service.
  • In addition, there’s the Georgi Markov prize – for the most promising script, this prize gives the winner a chance to come to London for two weeks and work alongside BBC Radio Drama and with BBC World Service journalists.

How to Apply: In order to enter you need to send:

  • A script for a 53 minute radio play with up to 6 central characters – we are unable to return these, so make sure you keep a copy
  • A synopsis which outlines your play is no longer than 400 words
  • A completed entry form (here), attached to your play and synopsis.

Or you can complete and submit your entry online (here) by uploading your play and synopsis along with your personal details.

Visit the Program Webpage for Details

Award Providers: BBC World Radio

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