Essex Book Festival announces winner of Making Waves competition

News / Thu 3rd Apr 2014 at 11:29am

ESSEX Book Festival is delighted to announce that the winner of its 2014 writing competition MAKING WAVES is Hollie Hughes with her audio drama A Leap of Faith.

A Leap of Faith is the poignant but uplifting story of a man who truly believes he can fly. Its simplicity and humanity touched with magic, made it the outright winner from a shortlist of five audio dramas, each excellent in their own way.

Hollie started writing in 2012 and is rapidly gaining success. She was a shortlisted writer on the Essex Book Festival’s ‘Get it Writ’ competition in 2013. Her play Dinosaurs, was also shortlisted for the Windsor Fringe Kenneth Branagh Award for New Drama Writing (2013). Her second play, Cats and Dogs, was performed as a rehearsed reading at Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch in January.

Each of the five shortlisted writers took part in a writer development programme led by BBC Radio Drama Producer Jessica Dromgoole. They attended workshops with Jessica, received individual advice from her on their work and visited a BBC Radio Drama Studio to see it in action. As the overall winner, Hollie also receives a £100 cash prize.

Jessica said: “I was very honoured to be invited to work with the Essex Book Festival this year on Making Waves. All five finalists are proper dramatists with their own voices and something to say. Choosing between them is – in the end –a random act of personal taste. All of them deserved their prize of three months development and the absolute privilege of a production with Frequency Theatre – Ryan for his ambitious and dynamic writing, Clare for her warmth and wit, Anne for the acute and moving glimpse of a desperate life and Deanna for the humanity of her agenda – but in the end, it is Hollie’s magical thinking, and her instinctively human scale interaction between people whose hidden lives hold the key to their happiness, that inched ahead. I wish them all the greatest future writing for audio.”

Colchester-based Frequency Theatre produced each of the five shortlisted plays and they are all available to listen to at www.frequencytheatre.co.uk and via www.essexbookfestival.org.uk.

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