The BBC is to create a new award for digital innovation in theatres.
BBC Writersroom has launched an award for digital innovation, to be given to the theatre that produces the most original idea. The winner will be showcased on the digital arts service The Space, which is to be re-launched next year subject to BBC Trust approval. Launching the award at an event in the Radio Theatre at BBC Broadcasting House for more than 150 theatre managers from across the UK, BBC Director General Tony Hall said: “We’ll be looking for authentic, diverse voices from all over Britain, and new ways to explore original digital theatre for The Space, which we will launch by next summer.” Earlier this month, Tony Hall unveiled his plans to place arts programming at the heart of the corporation with new investment and more landmark commissions and partnerships.
BBC Writersroom, one of several co-commissioning partners ready to work with The Space, runs schemes targeting talent from a range of sources and works in partnerships with theatres, writers’ organisations, screen agencies, and the wider cultural industries. Kate Rowland, BBC Creative Director of New Writing, said: “Writers are at the heart of what we do and our partnerships with theatres are vital to the way we reach writers and champion talent across the UK.” Hall also shared plans for the first theatre awards from the BBC’s Performing Arts Fund. The charity will award £200k to the brightest theatre talents and £250k to the best community theatres. He said: “… without our theatre companies, great television drama simply couldn’t happen. It’s the work you do – finding, nurturing and producing talent – that has helped create this extraordinary moment for television drama across the world.”