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Playhouse Writer In Residence shortlisted for prestigious international award

Charley Miles
is currently Writer In Residence at West Yorkshire Playhouse after she was awarded a Channel 4 Playwrights’ Scheme Bursary and Blackthorn was developed by the Playhouse and performed in its Autumn/Winter season 2016.

Charley Miles from Kilburn, North Yorkshire, has been nominated for major international playwriting award, the US’s Susan Smith Blackburn prize, for her debut play, Blackthorn.

The Susan Smith Blackburn prize was set up in the US in 1978 to recognize outstanding work by female playwrights; notable previous winners include Caryl Churchill and Timberlake Wertenbaker.

James Brining, Artistic Director at West Yorkshire Playhouse said: “We are thrilled that Charley’s extraordinary talent and unique voice from the North of England has been recognised on a now international level.

As a major producing theatre in Yorkshire, the Playhouse has an urgent role to play in supporting the emerging generation of local talent– which is precisely why we offer and invest in writing and directing development schemes, such as the scriptwriting scheme that drew Charley to us in 2015.

Susan Smith Blackburn prize nominee Charley Miles said: “It’s such an honour to join the ranks of so many incredible female playwrights as a finalist for this prestigious prize.

Writing Blackthorn was very much a meditation on home and belonging, but my hope was always that the script would resonate far beyond. It brings me such pride to see it featured among plays by women across the English speaking world and for my play about a tiny Yorkshire farming village to reach so far beyond itself.

Recent nominees for the Susan Smith Blackburn prize include Lucy Kirkwood for Chimerica, Phoebe Waller-Bridge for Fleabag and former Writer In Residence at West Yorkshire Playhouse, Zodwa Nyoni for Boi Boi Is Dead.

Charley Miles first submitted a script to the Playhouse in 2015 before taking part in Playwrights 1, an 8 week introductory course to explore the craft of writing for live performance in 2016. Her debut play, Blackthorn was developed by the Playhouse and performed in its Autumn/Winter season 2016.

To find out more about Playwrights and New Writing click here

This Theatre has the support of the Channel 4 Playwrights’ Scheme sponsored by Channel 4 Television.

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