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Two Female Playwrights Win Philip Seymour Hoffman Award

Two Female Playwrights Win Philip Seymour Hoffman Award

Clare Barron and Sarah DeLappe have been named the winners of the inaugural Relentless Award, a play-writing prize founded in actor Philip Seymour Hoffman’s memory. 

Barron’s “Dance Nation” and DeLappe’s “The Wolves” both deal with girls doing physically challenging activities: “Dance Nation” centers on teenage dancers and “The Wolves” on a girls’ indoor soccer team. 

Meant to honor unproduced works, the Relentless Award is funded by a settlement that writer David Bar Katz won from The National Enquirer after the tabloid published a false story about Katz and Hoffman after the actor’s death.

Barron and DeLappe will split the $45,000 prize, as well as enjoy a week-long retreat on a farm in upstate New York with a director, a fellow playwright and actors. The plays will also receive staged readings. 

“Each one of these plays does something that I haven’t seen before — there’s some technique used, some use of time, character, that is unusual,” said Katz. 

“We had so many discussions over the years of how tough it is on playwrights, and how difficult to survive,” Katz continued. “We’d sit and talk about it in Keens chophouse, and on the walls they have all those fliers from theaters in the 1800s, but playwrights couldn’t afford to come here now, and Phil said it would be nice if a playwright could afford a steak, and make a living.”

[via NY Times]

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