LOS ANGELES — The Armenian Dramatic Arts Alliance (ADAA) announces that its biennial $10,000 prize for playwriting is now named the Saroyan/Paul Playwriting Prize for Human Rights/Social Justice, and will begin accepting submissions in January 2016.
The inaugural sponsor and longtime supporter of the prize, The William Saroyan Foundation, has been joined by the Lillian and Varnum Paul Fund, longtime supporter of ADAA’s Paul Screenwriting Award, to complete the funding of the biennial playwriting prize, which has become known as one of the world’s most reputable playwriting awards.
ADAA’s board decided to merge the competitions and focus solely on playwriting, which was ADAA’s original programming focus and which has given ADAA writers their most far-reaching success and opportunities at theaters and arts institutions around the world.
In the prize’s last cycle in 2014, ADAA launched a Human Rights/Social Justice focus, opening the competition to plays which engage an audience with social and political issues and/or promotes peace, social justice and human rights, not only Armenian themes. This has enhanced the outreach of the prize even further around the world.
In continuing with the work of previous years to support Armenian stories and artists, a special $2500 prize, the Kondazian Playwriting Award for Armenian Stories, will be awarded to an outstanding play on an Armenian theme. Karen Kondazian, actress, ADAA Board Member and daughter of Lillian and Varnum Paul, is sponsor of this special prize within the competition:
“I am extremely happy to have my parents’ The Paul Award, join hands with the extraordinary Saroyan Foundation — to inspire and encourage human justice and dignity thought the eyes of the of playwright with the Saroyan/Paul Playwriting Prize,” says Kondazian. “It is also my honor to present the Kondazian Playwriting Award for Armenian Stories (through my parents’ fund) to encourage playwrights of any nationality, to explore the Armenian heart.”