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Writers’ festival launched in partnership with Birmingham Hippodrome

A new festival for stage and screen writers is being launched by Transition Stage Company in partnership with Birmingham Hippodrome.

Taking place at Birmingham Hippodrome from January 25 to 27, 2024, StoryTown Festival will include competitions, networking events, and panel discussions.

BBC Writers Room is supporting the festival and will host a free event as part of it.

Further details of the programme are yet to be announced, but it will include other free events and covers multiple genres of writing, including musical theatre.

Transition Theatre Company’s annual script writing competition Enter.Stage.Write will also take place as part of the festival on January 25 and 26, alongside its Amplified competition, which focuses on black, asian and minority comedy writers.

Both competitions will see five shortlisted scripts staged as performances in front of an audience and a panel of judges, followed by an awards ceremony. The winner of each competition will receive a £1,000 prize and a year of writing support.

This year’s judging panel will include creative director at Birmingham Hippodrome Chris Sudworth; director Darcia Martin; producer Lisa Walters; and development executive at Expand Media (Sky Studios) Scott Pope.

Natalie Edward-Yesufu, chief executive of Transition Stage Company and Enter.Stage.Write, said: “It’s vital that writers and storytellers embrace entrepreneurship, knowledge, and collaboration in the face of artificial intelligence and job uncertainty amidst the cost of living crisis.”

“Enter.Stage.Write is our celebration of writers, while StoryTown festival facilitates connections and learning among writers, producers, and storytellers. I’m thrilled to gather individuals from across the UK in Birmingham for this exciting experiment in unity.”

Sudworth added: “We’re delighted to partner with Enter.Stage.Write to showcase exceptional new works in the West Midlands.”

“The programme chimes perfectly with the artist development and producing journey we have begun at the Hippodrome, supporting the creation of work that represents and reflects our great city.”

Edward-Yesufu plans for the festival to continue annually.

Source: The Stage, article by Giverny Masso

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