CRANN (Centre for Research on Adaptive Nanostructures and Nanodevices) at Trinity College Dublin has announced that it will be co-hosting the winner’s ceremony (and a reading of the winning script) for an international scriptwriting contest featuring science- and technology-inspired plays. From the Jan. 11, 2012 news item on Nanowerk,
CRANN, the SFI [Science Foundation of Ireland] funded nanoscience centre based at Trinity College Dublin, today announced that it is bringing the STAGE International Script Competition to Ireland during Dublin City of Science 2012. The competition judges will include a Pulitzer Prize winner and a Nobel Laureate.
The STAGE International Script Competition is a unique collaboration between art and science that awards a prize of $10,000 for the best new play about science and technology. STAGE – Scientists, Technologists and Artists Generating Exploration – began as an alliance between the Professional Artists Lab, a dynamic artistic laboratory, and the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Through CRANN’s relationship with CNSI, Dublin has beaten off stiff international competition to bring STAGE to Ireland.
As the 2012 City of Science, Dublin will host a programme of science-related events and activities throughout the year. The city will host Europe’s largest science conference, the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) 2012 from July 11-15, 2012, at which the winner of the 5th STAGE International Script Competition will first be announced to the public.
Later in the year, STAGE and CRANN will collaboratively host the award ceremony, at which the winning playwright will receive their STAGE Award from a science Nobel Laureate. In tandem with the ceremony, there will be a staged reading of the winning play, performed by professional Irish actors. Nancy Kawalek, Founder/Director of STAGE, will direct the reading.
Unfortunately, it’s too late for interested parties to submit their plays for this cycle (the 5th); submissions were closed as of Dec. 1, 2011.
The competition certainly seems to have attracted some high profile interest in past years (from the news item on Nanowerk),
Each cycle, the winner of the STAGE International Script Competition is chosen by a stellar panel of judges. Judges for the last cycle were Pulitzer Prize and Tony-Award winning playwright David Auburn; Tony, Olivier, and Obie Award-winning playwright John Guare; Nobel Laureate Alan Heeger; Nobel Laureate and KBE Sir Anthony Leggett; and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Lindsay-Abaire. In addition to Mr. Lindsay-Abaire, who has shown his support for STAGE by signing on as a judge ‘in perpetuity’, the judges for this 5th cycle of the competition will include two science Nobel Laureates and two additional distinguished writer-artists from the theatre world. The names of these jurors will be announced in early 2012.
The 3rd cycle winner was a play about Rosalind Franklin; I’ve long been interested in her story and I mentioned it in a July 28, 2010 post about science-inspired knitting (there’s a ‘Rosalind’ scarf),
For anyone not familiar with Franklin (from the San Diego Super Computer Center at the University of Southern California web page),
There is probably no other woman scientist with as much controversy surrounding her life and work as Rosalind Franklin. Franklin was responsible for much of the research and discovery work that led to the understanding of the structure of deoxyribonucleic acid, DNA. The story of DNA is a tale of competition and intrigue, told one way in James Watson’s book The Double Helix, and quite another in Anne Sayre’s study, Rosalind Franklin and DNA. James Watson, Francis Crick, and Maurice Wilkins received a Nobel Prize for the double-helix model of DNA in 1962, four years after Franklin’s death at age 37 from ovarian cancer.
Here’s a bit more about the 3rd cycle STAGE winner, Photograph 51, from the news item on Nanowerk,
A film version of third STAGE Competition winner Photograph 51 is being produced by Academy Award-nominated director Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), Academy Award-winning actress Rachel Weisz, and Ari Handel. Playwright Anna Ziegler will adapt her play for the screen. Photograph 51 was featured at the 2011 World Science Festival in New York City; the play has also enjoyed prestigious productions in New York City and Washington, D.C.
About the Play: What does a woman have to do to succeed in the world of science? It is 1953 and Dr. Rosalind Franklin, brilliant, passionate and ambitious, pours herself into her work at King’s College Lab in London. When fellow scientists Watson and Crick find out about her discoveries in the field of DNA, her work is suddenly not her own – and shortly thereafter they claim credit for a major breakthrough. A compelling drama about a woman’s sacrifice for professional success, Photograph 51 asks how we become who we become, and whether we have any power to change.
I checked the playwright’s, Anna Ziegler, website for more information about the upcoming movie and found this,
Anna has been awarded [April 2011] a Tribeca Film Festival / Sloan Grant to adapt her play PHOTOGRAPH 51 into a film. Rachel Weisz, Ari Handel, Audrey Rosenberg and Darren Aronofsky are producers.
You can find out more about STAGE and other winners of the competition here.