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Finalists announced for inaugural Women's Prize for Playwriting

The winner will be revealed in the coming weeks

Playwriting on a keyboard

The finalists for the Women's Prize for Playwriting have been revealed.

Launched by Ellie Keel Productions and Paines Plough, with 45North and in association with Sonia Friedman Productions, the scheme was searching for texts over 60 minutes in length.

Keel today said, "I'm overjoyed to have arrived at these seven remarkable plays after receiving an incredible 1,169 submissions to The Women's Prize for Playwriting in our inaugural year. The breadth of these plays is outstanding in terms of their subject, form and style. I am thrilled with their ambition and scope and firmly believe that they all deserve to be produced.

"I also want to congratulate every single writer who wrote and submitted a play to us this year. There has been a tremendous sense of community and mutual support amongst all our writers, and that celebration of the craft of writing for the stage is, to me, a big part of what The Women's Prize for Playwriting set out to do."

The finalists in full are:

...blackbird hour by babirye bukilwa
COLOSTRUM by Liv Hennessy
PARADISE STREET by Chinonyerem Odimba
Reasons You Should(n't) Love Me by Amy Trigg
Red Sky at Night by Eve Leigh
The Virgins by Miriam Battye
YOU BURY ME'' by Ahlam

The judging panel has featured award-winning actress Monica Dolan, Sarah Frankcom, Artistic Director of LAMDA, playwright and screenwriter Tanika Gupta, playwright Ella Hickson, theatre producer and former executive director of the Donmar Warehouse Kate Pakenham, actress and playwright Maxine Peake and artistic director of Kiln Theatre, Indhu Rubasingham. It is chaired by literary agent Mel Kenyon.

Any person of 16 years or older who is resident in the UK and Ireland and who identifies as female was able to enter, with the piece awarded the first prize by the judging panel receiving £12,000 in respect of an exclusive option for the lead producers of the Prize to co-produce the winning play.

The winner will be revealed later this autumn, with a date to be confirmed.