Press Release: Entries open for third SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition

February 13, 2014

The Imbewu Trust is calling for applications for their third SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition, with a number of prizes available this year.


Entries open on 1 March, closing date for applications is 31 July and the top five scripts will be selected for a week-long staged reading in October, with the opportunity for discussion and feedback from the public and members of the theatre industry. 


The winning script will be produced by a professional creative team for a run at a Cape Town theatre in 2015. A second winner will have the chance to further workshop his or her play, with a third award of the Scribblers Dream,  a financial prize to enable a writer to work alongside a mentor to develop his or her script. The panel of SCrIBE judges comprises a group of seasoned theatre practitioners.


The Imbewu Trust is a non-profit organization which was established to promote the development of contemporary South African theatre and arts. Founded by Sam de Romijn and Paul Griffiths, Imbewu seeks to create an accessible community of varied voices that can flourish through collaboration, resourcefulness and innovation. Imbewu’s primary objectives are to stimulate the contemporary theatre industry, as well as showcase the best of South African theatre on an international platform and create opportunities for new theatre practitioners.


“We have been overwhelmingly inspired by the calibre of scripts that we have received in the past two years,” says Griffiths. “The depth and breadth of style, genre and subject matter has underlined the high level of creativity and imagination we have in this country, and the wealth of stories we have to tell.


“A text comes alive when it is read from the page, and presented on the stage.  It is during this process that its strengths and weaknesses are highlighted. As a result, we have evolved SCrIBE over the years, to allow the full potential of the top entries to be realised, and for a group of writers to benefit from the input of a professional team.”


“It is an incredible opportunity for a writer to have access to resources and the cost of mounting a production covered by a professional team, but also a chance for a host of other writers to develop their craft,” says de Romijn. “A number of previous entrants have gone on to rework their text as a result of the open readings, and some on to further professional runs.”


For SCrIBE 2014, Imbewu is looking for new works of outstanding quality, original content and which represent the range of the South African theatre landscape. The scripts should be in English, no longer than 40 pages or 80 minutes, with no more than five cast members.


The Imbewu Trust’s other initiatives include the Imbewu Showcase in New York, USA. Started in 2012, when Imbewu presented Neil Coppen’s Tin Bucket Drum to great acclaim, this project aims to create dialogue between US practitioners and Imbewu, and to develop South African arts through cultural exchange.


Speaking at the announcement of the call for 2014 SCrIBE entries, de Romijn said that the next New York Showcase was planned for mid-2015. A USA-based team is currently working to identify partners, raise funding and assist with logistics, to present an exciting season of contemporary South African performers in New York.


She said other long-term goals for the Imbewu Trust included establishing a sustainable bursary fund for tertiary education at an arts institution, and publishing a collection of scripts from the SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition.


Entries for the SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition open on 1 March. For details visit


About the Imbewu Trust


The Imbewu Trust is a Non-Profit Organisation which was set up to develop and promote contemporary South African theatre and arts, as well as showcase South African theatre on an international stage.  We seek to create an accessible community of varied voices that can flourish through collaboration, resourcefulness and innovation.


Our objectives include:

  • to showcase works of outstanding original and unique quality, and show a great depth and range in South Africa’s arts landscape;

  • to create a platform for new practitioners and allow them the opportunity to showcase their work, both in South Africa and on an international stage;

  • to promote South Africa’s cultural identity on the world stage and in so doing enhance our national pride;

  • to nurture and develop South Africa’s rich cultural heritage;

  • to develop a greater audience for South African arts, and to create a greater level of awareness of contemporary theatre;

  • to create a brand that corporate South Africa can associate with original and unique creative artists.


Our current projects include:


The SCrIBE Script Writing Competition

South African theatre makers have their own unique stories to tell. As part of our objective to promote and enhance new contemporary theatre, the Imbewu Trust created the SCrIBE Script Writing Competition. Now in its third year, this annual competition is an opportunity for South African playwrights to further develop their work, and for one winner, to have their play professionally mounted for a run at a Cape Town theatre.  


Imbewu Showcase in New York, USA, started July/August 2012

This is a showcase of South African theatre, using arts and culture as a means to promote a positive image of South Africa.  The Imbewu Trust, in association with the Horse Trade Theatre Group in Manhattan’s East Village, presented Tin Bucket Drum, by Standard Bank Young Artist Neil Coppen, directed by Karen Logan and featuring Mpume Mthombeni. The production received rave reviews and was seen by a wide range of people. This initial project has sparked a new dialogue between US practitioners and Imbewu. Imbewu aims to continue to develop SA arts through cultural exchange, development projects and financial aid all stemming from the US- with the culmination of the project being the Showcase. A USA-based team is currently working on sourcing partners and funding for the next Showcase, planned for mid-2015.


Fly Free Graduates Bursary

This enables graduates of the Waterfront Theatre School to produce work on the Fringe at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown. This was won by Natasha Dryden and Angela Inglis in 2011 and their show Se—My-Alles did extremely well as part of the Fringe festival in Grahamstown. The 2012 winner was Trudi Conradie, whose performance of the Reza de Wet play; “Breathing In” won an ovation award for its outstanding performance. For 2014 the Trust is focusing  on SCrIBE and are looking to open the bursary to all the tertiary education institutions in the Western Cape, allowing for greater scope and more opportunities for students across the board.




Press Release provided by Christine Skinner.

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