Chesil Theatre’s Take Ten winners announced

CHESIL Theatre has announced the winners of its TakeTen competition – with two Wintonians topping the rankings.

Writers were invited to write a ten minute play in on the theme ‘The Road Not Taken’.

An independent panel of judges from the world of professional theatre and drama then selected the winners from more than 400 entries from across the UK.

The winners are:

  • A Desert Place, Rosemary Evans, London.
  • All Our Lives, Christina Pye, Winchester.
  • Along Any Minute, William Patterson , London.
  • Careful, Karla Ptacek, London.
  • Pufferfish Over the Carpathians, Neil Walden, Gloucester.
  • The Belgians, Ross Bateson, London.
  • Tremble, Rob Johnston, Manchester.
  • Tunnel, Cate Sweeney, Cardiff.
  • Waiting For a Fare, John-Paul Jones, Poole.

The plays cover every genre of theatre from absurdist to tragedy, satire to black comedy.

Those ten winning plays are now cast with 24 actors and 10 directors.

Chesil Theatre chairman David Small said: “We have been delighted that TakeTen has been well received with so many participants from all across the UK. Chesil Theatre is pleased to play its small part in giving writers the challenge of creating a unique work within a prescribed format and theme, with the opportunity to see their work premiered on stage.”

The ongoing pandemic means that Chesil Theatre will need to adapt its approach to producing the festival, which will run all ten plays.

As Hampshire is currently in national lockdown, rehearsals are being held online.

There is a possibility streaming the performances.

Chesil Theatre has been running new writing festivals biennially since 2008 and has received positive encouragement from the professional theatre including a visit from Sir Ian McKellen who watched a performance in 2014.

Most recently, when the new TakeTen Festival was announced in May 2020 Sir Kenneth Branagh said: “Three cheers for Winchester’s Chesil Theatre. At a time of challenge for all, they have bravely looked to creativity and imagination. Their new writing competition can lead the way to new ideas and new and entertaining ways to look at our changed and changing world.

“I hope these exciting writers will help herald the return of live amateur theatre, a vital part of Britain’s creative ecosystem.”

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