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Papatango to capture stage production of Samuel Bailey's Shook as the company announces 2021 plans

The company will be engaging in a variety of projects next year

Joshua Finan and Ivan Oyik in Shook
© The Other Richard

Papatango has announced its plans for 2021 – aiming to support as many early-stage artists and freelancers as possible.

The company will reimagine the Papatango New Writing Prize – and now invite submissions of 25 to 50 minute scripts for audio performance in a new collaboration with English Touring Theatre. From there, they will select three winners, rather than one, each receiving £2000, an audio production, and digital publication with Nick Hern Books.

Three casts and creative teams will be assembled to record the winning plays – with the company stating that at least one member of each production will be selected from open-entry applications.

The audio recordings will virtually "tour" to 12 venues – Bristol Old Vic, Chichester Festival Theatre, Stephen Joseph Theatre (Scarborough), Theatre Royal Plymouth, Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse, Theatr Clwyd (Mold), Lyric Theatre Belfast, Southwark Playhouse and Bush Theatre.

The 2021 Prize will be open for entries from 9am on Friday 27 November 2020, closing at midnight on 7 February 2021, with winners selected in May ahead of an autumn tour.

From 2022, the award will return to its original form.

Having had to cancel its London run due to the pandemic, the company has announced it will film its award-nominated Shook by Samuel Bailey.

The film will feature the show's original cast, composed of Josef Davies (Jonjo), Josh Finan (Cain), Andrea Hall (Grace) and Ivan Oyik (Riyad), with the original set/costume designer Jasmine Swan and sound designer Richard Hammart returning.

The company's artistic director George Turvey will direct the piece alongside multi-Emmy-nominated director James Bobin (Flight of the Conchords). It will be released early next year.

It has also been announced that Igor Memic's Old Bridge will be rescheduled and run at a later date in 2021 at the Bush Theatre.

The company will also bolster its completely free creative learning opportunities through GoWrite – with Sarah Emily Parkes overseeing the project.

Turvey said today: "We're bouncing back from the pandemic with our biggest ever programme to support artists and audiences. Including our first film, our rescheduled move to the Bush Theatre, and our remodelled Prize, we'll champion more brilliant new talent than ever before at a time when this is especially vital.

"Equally, by welcoming Sarah to the team and launching our education portal, we'll help even more people to get into theatre and reap the benefits of creativity. That we can deliver this expansion, even though we run without any core public subsidy and chose not to apply to the Cultural Recovery Fund so that others with greater need could do so, demonstrates what can be achieved with a little will and a lot of imagination."