To celebrate its first birthday St James theatre has launched a brand new Young Critics Award, calling out for budding journalists aged between 18 and 23-years-old to submit a review of its forthcoming production Scenes From A Marriage.
Applicants who believe themselves to be the next big thing in the competitive world of theatre criticism are invited to email in a short review of Trevor Nunn’s latest production by midnight 27 October, keeping their piece under 1000 words and focusing their thoughts on text, director, design and performances.
The winner will be judged by a panel comprising theatre critics Lyn Gardner (The Guardian) and Michael Coveney (WhatsOnStage), alongside the venue’s Artistic Director David Gilmore and Director of Development Lady Lucy French. While in years to come the fifth member of the panel will be the reigning award winner, Dead Posh Productions’ Katherine Farmer will complete the panel for the inaugural award.
Speaking about the award, Gardner commented: “It’s brilliant that the St James theatre is encouraging young people to engage with theatre and write about it too. Engaged, informed audiences are the life blood of theatre. I hope that through this initiative we will find the audiences of tomorrow, but also the bloggers and critics of the future too.”
Her fellow critical colleague Coveney agreed, saying: “We always need new, better and younger critics to maintain a serious, informed level of discussion around the theatre.” Offering applicants some advice, the critic said: “In the social media today, everyone broadcasts an opinion. The good critic justifies that opinion with the depth of his passion and the quality of his writing.”
All shortlisted entries will appear on the St James theatre’s website and the winner will be revealed by Scenes From A Marriage’s leading pair Olivia Williams and Mark Bazeley after the curtain call on 6 November.
For your chance to win the award, as well as £200 cash and two tickets for the press night of an upcoming production at the theatre, email your submission to firstname.lastname@example.org. Anyone planning to submit a review can take advantage of a special young critics’ £20 ticket rate by booking through the St James theatre website.