* Prize money increased to USD3,000
POPULAR and fast-rising reward contest for Nigerian playwrights Beeta Playwright Competition, organised by Beeta Universal Arts Foundation (BUAF), has put out a call for talented playwrights between ages 10 – 40 to enter their plays for the 2023 edition of the prize contest worth USD$3,000 prize money. Deadline for submission is September 30, 2023. This year the contest, the sixth edition, has as theme’ No Limits’, as encouragement for playwrights to explore the depths of their creativity and come up with plays that give indepth understanding of Nigeria’s socio-cultural and political realities.
Apart from the USD$3,000 prize money, an improvement from its original N1m prize reward until last year when it was increased to N1.5m, the winning playwright will have a publishing deal and the play published by one of BUAF’s partners, Paperworth Books, just as the play will be staged live. Unlike other literary prizes where the winner takes all, Beeta Playwrights Competition recognises the value of the hard work that goes into writing plays and accordingly rewards the top 10 playwrights with amazing consolation prizes that encourage them to keep writing and improving their craft. Also, the top 10 will be mentored by a strong cast of professional playwrights, teachers of drama and Nollywood actors in a workshop session to further improve their craft as playwrights.
At its prize award ceremony last year when Yemi Akande won with The Mask We Wear after his third attempt, CEO of BUAF and delectable actress, Bikiya Graham-Douglas, explained her reason for setting up a prize that throws up young playwrights.
BUAF founder, Bikiya Graham-Douglas
“So we’re very grateful for the talent in Nigeria that we are discovering,” she said. “We started this competition because we saw a vacuum in documenting playwrights in my generation. After the generation of Wole Soyinka, Femi Osofisan, Ola Rotimi, JP Clark, there were not many plays coming out, and I found myself as a producer constantly looking for new materials to work with and I was not finding any, and so we started this competition. And honestly, it’s been very rewarding to see all these young people writing and telling their own version of our history. They deserve our applause.”
Winning plays and playwrights of the prize so far include Our Son the Minister (2018) by Paul Ugbede, Jagagba (2019) by Abdul Qudus-Ibrahim, Daughters of the East (2020) by Achalugo Chioma Ezekobe and Black Dust (2021) by Temilolu Fosudo. Akande joins the winning playwright club with his play, The Mask We Wear (2022).
All enquiries and submissions enquiries should be directed to www.beetauniversal.org with followership on all social media platforms at @beetaarts.