Debate Mate

New Views National Theatre Playwriting Competition 2018

Last year Y11 high achiever Amaka Dominic’s play Manchester 1981 was selected by a prestigious panel of judges at the National, including playwright James Graham and the actor Michael Balogan for “a special commendation” as writers, “whose plays were particularly admired by the shortlisting panel”. Amaka created her piece attending weekly creative writing classes which took place and was taught in the English Dept. at SMA as part of the school enrichment programme organised by one of our partner schools: St Thomas the Apostle. Part of the programme involves one to one feedback from a published playwright during the writing process. Initially, Manchester 1981 was selected for the Longlist of 100 students out of 300 from Independent and State schools across the country. Amaka then went on to receive “special commendation” in a Shortlist of 20 students. In recognition of her achievement she will now attend a writer’s workshop at the National Theatre to develop her skills, led by a team of whose plays have been or are currently performed in the West End. We hope that this is the start of a promising career for Amaka, who during her five years at SMA was an outstanding English student and a member of Debate Mate too! This year we hope to run a similar programme for the current Y9 going into Y10 next academic year.