“Remarkable unearthers of new talent.” Fiona Mountford, The Evening Standard
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Papatango discover, produce and publish brilliant playwrights, launching the best new talent with maximum impact. We inspire artists and audiences that theatre is open to anyone, regardless of background. 

Our discoveries have won BAFTAs, Alfred Fagon, Off West End and RNT Foundation Playwright awards, premiering in over 20 countries worldwide. Our free playwriting training reaches over 4000 people a year. Our unique commitment to give feedback on every script we receive – over 1500 a year – and our unprecedented travel bursaries ensure that anyone, anywhere, can access new writing.

Because all you need is a story.

Company Number 07365398
Registered Charity Number 1152789



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The Papatango New Writing Prize

“Every year the Papatango Prize comes up with a bit of a cracker.” The Guardian

Opening in 2009, the Papatango New Writing Prize is the biggest playwriting award in the UK, attracting more average annual entries than any other. It was the first – and remains the only annual – playwriting award to guarantee its winner a full world premiere in London followed by a national tour, plus royalties, publication and a £6,500 commission to support a follow-up play.

As well as giving one brilliant writer an unrivalled launch, the Prize is unique in giving feedback to all entries. No other company makes such an investment in emerging playwrights.

The Prize is assessed completely anonymously. The reading team is at least 50% female, 20% people of colour and based across the country. 

Winners have been evenly divided between men and women. 70% have been state educated, with an age range stretching from the 20s to the 50s. 

It is open to all residents of the UK or Ireland, free to enter, and assessed anonymously. Remember: all you need is a story.

The 2020 Prize is open for entries until 9pm on 2 February 2020. Find out more HERE.

“Winning the Papatango Prize has been huge. Everything from the script development process to the production to the reception the play has received has been a steep – but intensely exciting – learning curve. And that’s what writers need – to get the plays we create in our heads onto stage. That’s the only way to develop, and it’s one of the most difficult things to achieve. Without Papatango Shook might have been read and entered a ‘process of development’, but Papatango commit to producing the play – and they do a brilliant job of it.  I entered only hoping to get feedback, something they give to every writer who wants it, which is an incredible achievement. Instead, I started the most exacting, thrilling, rewarding 6 months of my professional career and now I have the chance to do what I love for my actual job! Apply.” Samuel Bailey, 2019 Prize winner.

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“A bold and often brilliant stab at something new.”
Dominic Maxwell, The Times



by Samuel Bailey (2019, Prize Winner)
Southwark Playhouse, UK tour and Trafalgar Studios

The Funeral Director

by Iman Qureshi (2018, Prize Winner)
UK tour in co-production with English Touring Theatre

The Funeral Director

by Iman Qureshi (2018, Prize Winner)
Southwark Playhouse


by Sam Potter (2018)
Arcola Theatre & UK tour


by Stewart Pringle (2017, Prize Winner)
Southwark Playhouse


by Matt Grinter (2016, Prize Winner)
Southwark Playhouse

After Independence

by May Sumbwanyambe (2016)
Arcola Theatre


by James Rushbrooke (2015, Prize Winner)
Southwark Playhouse


by Fiona Doyle (2014, Prize Winner)
Finborough Theatre


by Luke Owen (2013, Prize Winner)
Finborough Theatre


by Louise Monaghan (2012, Prize Winner)
Finborough Theatre

Everyday Maps for Everyday Use

by Tom Morton-Smith (2012)
Finborough Theatre

Back Home Contemplation

by May Sumbwanyambe (2012)
Finborough Theatre

Photos of You Sleeping

by Jane Wainwright (2012)
Finborough Theatre


by Dawn King (2011, Prize Winner)
Finborough Theatre

Through The Night

by Matt Morrison (2011), Finborough Theatre

Rigor Mortis

by Carol Vine (2011)
Finborough Theatre


by Rob Young (2011)
Finborough Theatre


by Jacqueline McCarrick (2010, Prize Winner)
Tristan Bates Theatre

My Balloon Beats Your Astronaut

By Kerry Hood (2010)
Tristan Bates Theatre

The Ducks

by Michael McLean (2010)
Tristan Bates Theatre


by John Seymour (2010)
Tristan Bates Theatre

Christmas Reloaded

by Philip Gawthorne (2009)
Old Red Lion


by Dominic Mitchell (2009, Prize Winner)
Tristan Bates Theatre

The Muse

by Matt Roberts (2008)
Pleasance Islington & Tristan Bates Theatre


by Matt Grinter (2008)
Pleasance Islington & Tristan Bates Theatre





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