Poetry News

Brigid McLeer's The Triumph of Crowds Wins 2016 Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Playwrights

By Harriet Staff

Leslie Scalapino, photo by Tom White

This just in: Brigid McLeer is the recipient of the third annual Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Playwrights. In memory of Leslie Scalapino and her "commitment to the community of experimental writing and performance," the award "recognizes the importance of exploratory approaches and an innovative spirit in writing for performance." The play will be directed by Fiona Templeton with an initial reading in December; performance and publication by Litmus Press is scheduled for 2017. More about McLeer and this year's finalists from the press release:

In our third round of the Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Performance Writers, we have chosen a work that is again very different to its predecessors. Triumph of Crowds is a layered work, weaving art history, film, and the contemporary politics and poetics of community. It opens up the space of performance into a time that is both meditative and urgent.

Brigid writes: The Triumph of Crowds is a lecture as performance, or performance as lecture, distributed between the voices and gestures of ten performers. Written in response to Nicholas Poussin's painting 'The Triumph of David' (1631) it explores the politics of public assembly, protest, and becoming 'us'.

Brigid McLeer is Irish living in the UK. She has been working and exhibiting mainly in visual art and installation, as well as performance and writing.

The Prize:
In addition to the reading, the winner will receive a cash prize and print publication of winning play by Litmus Press, as well as a full production of the play in the following year. Details will be announced on the website www.lesliescalapinoaward.org and via email - sign up here.

The next call for entries will be in 2018.

Our final rounds were highly competitive and we plan further presentations to introduce this year's finalists.

The Leslie Scalapino Award recognizes the importance of exploratory approaches and an innovative spirit in writing for performance. It wishes to encourage women writers who are taking risks with the playwriting form by offering the opportunity to gain wider exposure through readings and productions. The award also seeks to increase public awareness for this vibrant contemporary field.

Finalists:
Lisa Langford, The Art of Longing
Jamara Wakefield, Rosie

Semi-finalists:
Kelly Malone, Reign of Contexti
Ish Klein, Orchids
Michelle Sui, house/body

Leslie Scalapino and the Award
In memory of Leslie Scalapino, her extraordinary body of work, and her commitment to the community of experimental writing and performance.

The Leslie Scalapino Award recognizes the importance of exploratory approaches and an innovative spirit in writing for performance. It wishes to encourage women writers who are taking risks with the playwriting form by offering the opportunity to gain wider exposure through readings and productions. The award also seeks to increase public awareness for this vibrant contemporary field.

The Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Playwrights is funded in part by the Leslie Scalapino-O Books Fund and is administered by The Relationship. Publication of award-winning works will be in collaboration with Litmus Press.

Learn more about the award and its history here.