Anders Lustgarten wins Inaugural Harold Pinter Playwright’s Award

22 June 2011

PRESS RELEASE

Wednesday 22 June 2011

Anders Lustgarten wins Inaugural Harold Pinter Playwright’s Award

The inaugural Harold Pinter Playwright’s Award was presented today (Wednesday) at the Royal Court Theatre to Anders Lustgarten, whose first play A Day at the Racists about the workings of the British National Party premiered at the Finborough Theatre in March 2010.

The Harold Pinter Playwright’s Award will be given annually by his widow, Lady Antonia Fraser, to support a new commission at the Royal Court. It can be given to any playwright, from a first-time, unpublished writer to one already established.

Since Anders turned to playwriting in 2007, he has completed writing attachments at Soho Theatre and the National Theatre with commissions from both and the Bolton Octagon. He read Chinese Studies at Oxford and alongside his writing, he works as a political activist across the world, focusing on the actions of multinational corporations in developing countries.

Anders most recently won the Catherine Johnson Award given to the Best Play written as part of the Pearson Playwrights’ Scheme, which awards five bursaries a year to writers of outstanding promise.

Dominic Cooke, Artistic Director of the Royal Court said:
“This very generous award granted to the Royal Court by Harold’s widow Antonia Fraser will allow us to commission a playwright each year, helping us continue our commitment here to new writing and pay tribute to Harold’s important contribution to the Royal Court.

“Although there are no specific criteria for the award, it seemed appropriate that the first one should go to a talented young writer with a fierce political engagement who plans to write a play about the radical changes in the world around us.”

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(22/06/11)

Notes to Editors

Coutts & Co is the Principal Sponsor of the Royal Court Theatre

Coutts & Co is the UK private banking arm of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Coutts has a long history of supporting the arts going back 200 years, having looked after the financial affairs of many famous clients connected with the arts such as Bram Stoker, Charles Dickens and Chopin. In 1816, Thomas Coutts married Harriot Mellon, a popular actress of her day, and together they became partners of a number of London Theatres, including the Drury Lane and the Royal Opera House. Coutts has even featured in a number of artistic works including The Gondoliers by Gilbert and Sullivan, and Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic story Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. In the new millennium, this tradition has continued not only through managing the finances of many of today’s top writers, actors and musicians, but also through our arts sponsorship programme and we are delighted to support The Royal Court and its diverse range of ground-breaking performances.