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British Council Malta
BBC International Radio Playwriting Competition

Have you ever dreamed of hearing your work broadcast on the BBC World Service? If so, then read on to find out more about our competition for radio playwrights.

The British Council, in partnership with BBC World Service, has launched its 11th International Playwriting Competition on 18 October 2008. The competition invites writers from around the world to write a one-hour radio play on any subject, with the winning entries being broadcast on BBC World Service in November 2009.

Last year more than 1200 entries were received, coming from places as far afield as Alaska and Vanuatu, and entries are as likely to come from established authors as from writers who are totally inexperienced. Former winners have gone on to gain further commissions for BBC World Service Drama, making the competition a potential launch-pad to a future career.

About the Competition

Applicants are invited to write a radio play of approximately 60 minutes in length, on a subject of their choice. The play must be the original, unpublished work of the person or persons submitting it.

The competition is open to any writer who is not normally a resident of the United Kingdom. The play must be written in English but can be translated by a third party (we are not able to offer any assistance with translation costs). Translated work must be identified as such, and the translator must be credited. The complete set of rules are given on the application form which is available to download at the bottom of this page.


There are two main prizes given to the best play written in English as a first language and to the best play written in English as a second language. The two prize winners will each receive £2500, and get the opportunity to visit London to see their plays being recorded and to attend a prize-giving evening.

There will also be additional prizes of digital or short wave radios being given for the best radio play to be written from each of the following geographical areas: the Americas; Europe; Africa and the Middle East; South Asia; Russia and the Caucasus; Asia and Pacific. All writers whose plays reach the judges' final shortlist will receive BBC goodie bags.

Competition Deadline and Submission

The closing date for applications will be 31st March 2009.

Submissions and application forms can either be emailed to radioplay@bbc.co.uk

For more information and application form please visit the BBC World Service website at www.bbcworldservice.com/radioplay

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