The Nick Darke Award 2018 prize went to Jen Silverman for her play, Blinding, a strikingly original piece that addresses race, identity and gender politics.
The latest news
Blinding Scriptwriter Jen Silverman Wins Nick Darke Award
This week, luminaries from the world of theatre, performance and writing gathered at the Royal...
Nick Darke Award Open for Entries
The 2018 Nick Darke Writers' Award is now open for submissions.
The Award celebrates the...
Playwright Richard Molloy Announced as Nick Darke Award Winner
Richard Molloy wins this year’s Nick Darke Award with Every Day I Make Greatness Happen.
What is the Nick Darke Award?
Following playwright Nick Darke's death, the Nick Darke Award was conceived in 2006 by his wife, the artist and film-maker Jane Darke, with the support of his family. Nick Darke wrote in many forms but earned his living in the world of theatre, screen and radio. The award is funded by Falmouth University through the Academy of Music and Theatre Arts (AMATA) and the School of Writing & Journalism. The relationship between Falmouth and the award recognises Nick Darke's impact across the arts and endeavours to continue his legacy through the promotion of talent.
How to submit
- Please submit a full stage play script (minimum of 45 minutes in length, no maximum) and a one-page synopsis about the play in PDF format to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Confirmation of receipt of entry will be sent by email.
- All submissions should be entered anonymously. Do not include a name, address or email on the script. Please put contact details in the email with your submission.
- The application must be made in English.
- The competition is open to all national and international writers aged 16 and over.
- The writer must be the sole original author. The competition is not open to collaborations.
- We do not accept submissions that have previously been produced, had a rehearsed reading or won other competitions.
- We do not accept submissions of scripts previously entered into the Nick Darke Award.
- We do not accept musicals or adaptations.
- Late or incomplete entries will not be considered.
- The deadline for submissions is 17:00 (GMT) Monday 21 May 2018.
View all award criteria
|Nick Darke Criteria 2018 (1.27 MB)|
The submissions will be read by a group of readers who will produce a longlist for the Longlist Committee. The Longlist Committee will reduce the submissions to a final shortlist of eight for the judges and the winner will be announced in autumn 2018 at an award ceremony in Falmouth, Cornwall.
- Jeremy Howe Drama Commissioning Editor for Radio 4, UK.
- Molly Dineen BAFTA and Royal Television Society award-winning UK television documentary director, cinematographer and producer.
- Roger Michell Theatre, television and film director whose work includes the films Notting Hill, Changing Lanes and Morning Glory.
- Margaret Matheson Producer for cinema and television, whose credits include the original Scum (banned by the BBC), Abigail's Party and Oscar winning Antonia's Line.
- Jon Plowman Television and film producer responsible for producing and commissioning many great comedy successes including The Office and French & Saunders.
- Nick Hern London's leading independent specialist publisher of plays, theatre books and screenplays.
Submission FAQs 2018
Am I eligible to enter the Nick Darke Award?
The competition is open to all national and international writers aged 16 and over.
Is there a category?
The category is stage play.
What length should my stage play be?
Your script must be a full stage play, minimum of 45 minutes in length, no maximum length.
Should my script have a theme?
There is no theme.
Is the Award open to collaborations?
The writer must be the sole original author. The competition is not open to collaborations.
Can I submit a play that has previously been produced?
We do not accept submissions of plays that have had a production, a rehearsed reading or won other competitions.
How do I supply you with my contact details?Please put your contact details in the email with your submission. All submissions should be entered anonymously, do not include a name, address, telephone number or email on the script. The final shortlist will be announced on www.falmouth.ac.uk/nick-darke-award at which time the writers names will also be released.
Can I sumbit more than one script?
Yes you may.
Can I submit a play that I have previously entered into the Nick Darke Award?
We do not accept submissions of scripts previously entered into the Nick Darke Award.
Can I submit a musical or adaptation?
We do not accept musicals or adaptations.
Will I receive confirmation that my entry has been received?
A confirmation of receipt of entry will be sent by email. Please note that The Nick Darke Award cannot enter into any correspondence regarding a submission nor can it offer any editorial notes or guidance.
Does my play have to be in a specific format?
Please submit your script in PDF format. We cannot be responsible for changes in formatting or typeface if a Word file is submitted.
When will I know if my play has been shortlisted?
Shortlisted applicants will be notified by email by Friday 7 September 2018, unsuccessful applicants will not be notified. Please assume your work has not been shortlisted if you haven't heard from us by Friday 7 September 2018.
What should I do if I've made a mistake with my entry?
If you need to resubmit a script, please clearly mark the email RESUBMISSION. We cannot accept any submissions after the deadline of 17.00 (GMT) on Monday 21 May 2018.
Nick Darke's Story
Born and educated in Cornwall, England, the playwright Nick Darke studied acting at Rose Bruford College, Kent before learning his craft at The Victoria Theatre, Stoke-on-Trent. Here Nick performed in over 80 plays and in 1978 wrote his first play, Never Say Rabbit in a Boat. Its success led him to give up acting and in the following year he won the George Devine Award.
His work attracted further commissions and everything he wrote for the theatre was produced. This included 24 plays that were staged at The National Theatre, London; The Royal Shakespeare Company, Stratfordupon-Avon; The Bush, London; by Kneehigh Theatre and at The Royal Court, London.
He wrote several radio plays and made documentaries for radio and also successfully wrote for television and film. He moved back to Cornwall in 1990 and enjoyed the life of his childhood, fishing and wrecking (beachcombing). In 2001 he had a stroke which affected his speech and reading and writing. He and his wife Jane made the film, The Wrecking Season about the contacts he made tracing fishing gear back to the east coast of America. (Broadcast by BBC Four in 2005 and 2010)
Nick died of cancer in 2005, aged 56 with his funeral held on the beach. He and Jane filmed the last few months of his life. She made the film The Art of Catching Lobsters (BBC Four 2007) about their life together and grief. They have two sons; Jim is a marine scientist, Henry a filmmaker and writer.
The Nick Dark Archive
Falmouth University is delighted to hold the professional archive of Nick Darke, following the generous donation of papers from his family.
The Collection contains a broad range of preparatory work and scripts for his 30 plays, along with publicity, promotional material, photographs and correspondence. Nick's work for television, film and radio is also well represented. Inspiring, humbling, humorous, and at times deeply moving, the records document Nick's interest in environmental issues, music, Cornish history and culture, as well as his recovery from a stroke in 2001. Nick's wife, Jane, continues to be involved with both the Collection and its use.
The Collection is complemented well by other holdings relating to performance activity in Cornwall, including the archives of Wildworks and Kneehigh theatre companies, the latter whom Nick wrote for on many occasions.
The Collection is widely available to all, by appointment in the Library on the Penryn Campus. We enthusiastically welcome applicants to the Nick Darke Award keen to learn more about his craft.
For more information or to arrange access please contact us:
T: +44 (0)1326 255738