Lucy Kirkwood receiving the award at the Ivy Club
Lucy Kirkwood receiving the award at the Ivy Club
© Dan Wooller

Chimerica writer Lucy Kirkwood has become the first UK recipient of the Berwin Lee Playwrights Award.

The annual award was established earlier this year to foster and promote the craft of playwriting in both the United Kingdom and the United States and to encourage the writing and production of plays.

The 2013 winners Lucy Kirkwood (UK) and Bathsheba Doran (US) have each received a $25,000 prize.

"I am delighted and honoured to be the first British beneficiary of the Berwin Lee Theatre Foundation," Kirkwood said.

"As a commission it signifies a wonderfully free creative space to work in, for which I am very grateful, and hands stretching across the Atlantic between two great cities of theatre, by which I am very excited."

Trustees Dorothy Berwin, Mark Lee and Tom Kirdahy said: "We have always been passionate and active theatergoers for as long as we can remember. We wanted to give back to the theatre community and since everything starts with the writer, we felt we could be most effective by awarding grants to talented playwrights to help foster and develop new plays.

"Since we believe that London and New York are the theatre capitals of the world, we decided to create an award that celebrates playwrights on both sides of the Atlantic."