News

Wikileaks play takes prize

A play about Bradley Manning - the US soldier convicted of espionage for leaking secrets - has won the first James Tait Black Prize for Drama.

Tim Rice

The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning by Tim Price is the first play to win this new drama category for Britain’s oldest literary awards.

Tim Price’s script is based on the true story of Bradley Manning, the 24 year-old soldier accused of releasing classified military logs and embassy cables, now facing a court martial.

The story charts his radicalisation from his teenage years growing up in Wales to his current incarceration in America.

Video

Tim Price gives his reaction to the award:

New twist to literary awards

I am thrilled to be recognised by such a prestigious award, and honoured to be chosen as winner from such a fantastic shortlist of plays.
Tim PriceWinner of James Tait Black Prize for Drama

The £10,000 drama prize drama prize was launched last year by the University of Edinburgh in partnership with The National Theatre of Scotland and in association with the Traverse Theatre.

The announcement was made at an award ceremony in Edinburgh’s Traverse Theatre. The National Theatre of Scotland also produced a reading of the play at the event.

The prize was judged by students and academics from the University of Edinburgh, as well as representatives from the National Theatre of Scotland.

The drama accolade complements existing James Tait Black Prizes for fiction and non-fiction.

A unique theatrical voice

The judging panel said that the contemporary nature of the play, its important subject matter, its unique theatrical voice and inventive use of structure made Price’s work a clear winner.

We are delighted to honour Tim Price’s work with this award. His play is emotionally resonant on many levels, challenges thinking and teaches us things we did not know with a truly unique voice – exactly what this prize sets out to recognise.
Neil MurrayExecutive Producer at The National Theatre of Scotland

Tim Price accepted the prize at the ceremony with his family.

Impressive shortlist

The shortlist comprised of an exciting mix of dramatic talent, which included:

  • The Hundred Flowers Project by Christopher Chen
  • Foxfinder by Dawn King
  • In Water I’m Weightless by Kaite O’Reilly
  • The Effect by Lucy Prebble
  • The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning by Tim Price

The drama prize was judged by students and academics from the University of Edinburgh, as well as representatives from the National Theatre of Scotland.

The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning is being performed in the Pleasance at St Thomas of Acquin's High School, Edinburgh from 6-24 August.

The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning: book tickets

Related Links

James Tait Black Prizes

National Theatre of Scotland

Traverse Theatre - Edinburgh

School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures - University of Edinburgh