National Drama Association to Offer New Awards in 2024

The National Drama Association of Trinidad and Tobago (NDATT) is pleased to announce the return of the Playwrights Workshop Trinbago’s (PWT) Monthly Readers Theatre Series (MRTS). Scripts read during the 2023 cycle will be considered for inclusion and staging in the Annual New Play Festival (NPF) 2024 which, for the first time ever, will feature awards for excellence in multiple categories. 

National Drama Association to Offer New Awards in 2024
Photo courtesy: The National Drama Association of Trinidad and Tobago (NDATT)

Established in 2016, NPF provides an opportunity for theatre practitioners of varying generations to work together, and a forum to raise awareness of local theatre works, inspiring appreciation, respect and support for local theatre. The aim is to foster the development of original storytelling through drama and playmaking, provide opportunities for new plays and indigenous storytelling to be performed for personal and collective development.

NPF 2024 will be centered around the theme “No Place Like Home”. Professional and upcoming playwrights are invited to submit original radio, stage, screen, or street plays that have not been previously staged. Submissions open immediately, and the first deadline is set for Friday March 17, 2023. Earlier submissions will be given priority for scheduling in the MRTS. This will also give playwrights more time to complete rewrites based on the feedback received. 

During the MRTS, playwrights, theatre practitioners and enthusiasts meet at 7PM, on the first Wednesday of every month to listen to a cold reading of the script and participate in a discussion to assist the playwright with further script development.

A scene from New Play Festival 2018 | Photo credit: Saul Ramlal

Scripts submitted should be between 45 – 80 pages in length. There is no minimum or maximum character limit, but scripts submitted must be centred around a place in Trinidad, Tobago, or their surrounding islands, e.g. Carrera or Nelson Islands. Full guidelines and tips for writers can be found on the NDATT’s website at https://iamndatt.org.tt/playwrightsworkshoptt/ and should be consulted to ensure qualification for selection.

From the submissions and readings at the 2023 MRTS, three plays will be selected for the NPF 2024, and be assigned a dramaturge, director, stage manager, and cast to assist in the staging of the play. Selection of these plays will be done by the NPF committee. 

Persons who participate in the NPF 2024 can qualify for awards in categories which include: Best Script, Best New Playwright, Most Improved Playwright, Best Actor/Actress in Leading and Supporting Roles, Best Set and Costume Design, Audience Favorite, and a special award for best use of locale, to name a few. To be eligible for nomination, participants must be financial members of NDATT.

Adjudicators for the NPF 2024 awards will be announced at a later date. 

Persons interested in investing in or contributing to the development of new plays through the Play Development Fund or for more details can contact NDATT at 351-6293, nationaldramatnt@gmail.com, or through NDATT’s website www.iamndatt.org.tt.

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