Theatre503 in Battersea operates a biennial International Playwriting Award to recognise an emerging playwright. The Award, which attracts over 2,100 scripts from more than 50 countries, carries a prize of £6,000 provided by the Carne Trust, plus a guaranteed production of the winning play at Theatre503.
In alternate years, the theatre also offers an extensive mentorship programme to 5 emerging playwrights, employing experienced professionals from major theatres. Each participant receives a bursary of £2,000 from the Carne Trust to aid with living costs.
The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama commissions each year 4-5 playwrights to write plays for productions both in Cardiff, and at The Gate Theatre, London, each location providing a showcase for the College’s acting talent. The Carne Trust is the principal sponsor of this exciting initiative called NEW.
In tandem with the funding of directing workshops at The Sherman Theatre, Cardiff, The Trust also supports annual workshops for aspiring playwrights at the same venue. Under the leadership of emerging playwright and 2016 winner of the Pinter Award at the Royal Court, Brad Birch, six young playwrights based in Wales were mentored throughout 2018 by leading practitioners, resulting in them writing 6 plays which were given a professional reading in Cardiff and London. It is planned that two of these plays will be commercially staged in both cities in 2019, funded largely by the Carne Trust.
On an exceptional basis, the Carne Trust also provides part commissions for new plays by selected emerging playwrights, and contributes limited financial support to theatrical productions, especially those involving former beneficiaries.