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Nation calls on young playwrights

Published 13 October 2009

The National Theatre and The Guardian have teamed up to launch a new competition to find the next generation of playwrights.

The competition centres on the National Theatre’s forthcoming production of Nation, which has been adapted for the stage from Terry Pratchett’s novel by playwright Mark Ravenhill.

Now the National Theatre is inviting young people aged 10 to 17 to follow in Ravenhill’s footsteps by adapting an extract from Pratchett’s novel and creating a three-minute film of their adaptation being performed, to be uploaded to YouTube.

All 10 finalists will win tickets to see Nation at the National Theatre on 13 December. Two winning entries, chosen by Pratchett, Ravenhill, Guardian theatre critic Lyn Gardner and National Theatre Artistic Director Nicholas Hytner, will have their extract re-filmed and screened as part of the National’s NT Live event on 30 January, when a performance of Nation will be broadcast to more than 300 cinemas worldwide.

For full details of the competition, including Pratchett’s chosen extract from Nation, advice from novelists Michael Morpurgo and Phillip Pullman, and how to submit your finished clip, visit The Guardian online.

Nation, which opens on 24 November, is the latest Christmas family show at the National Theatre, following previous stage adaptations of Pullman’s His Dark Materials, Morpurgo’s War Horse and Jamila Gavin’s Coram Boy.

The new competition comes hot on the heels of the National Theatre’s Big Break young scriptwriting competition, which invites entrants to write a script based on Meg Rosoff’s novel How I Live Now.



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