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Queensland Premier's Drama Award
Subcategory of Awards Australian Awards
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'The Queensland Premier’s Drama Award is a development award assisting writers and performance makers to grow their first drafts, pitch documents, sample scenes, or creative development findings into a production-ready text. If you have an idea for a show that Australian audiences need to see on our stages, we want you to enter. This national award is open to individual artists and collectives of all levels of experience working across different performance practices.' (


2020-2021 winner Return to the Dirt Steve Pirie , 2021 single work drama

'n a year spent tending to the dead, a young man learns to live.

'Steve never imagined he’d end up working in the funeral industry. But when he finds himself living back home in Toowoomba to save up for his wedding, it’s the only job he can get.

'The year he spends working among the dead opens his eyes to what awaits us at the end and what it means to live.

'With respect, wit and a nod to pop-culture, Steve takes us on a journey that celebrates finding your place in the world, the power of personal redemption and humility in the face of the big questions.

'It’s a refreshing, honest and surprisingly uplifting invitation to start the conversations we all try to avoid.'

Source: Queensland Theatre Company.

2018-2019 winner The Holidays David Megarrity , 2020 single work drama

'The Holidays are on holiday: 12-year-old Oliver has been pulled out of school for an unexpected road trip with his mum and dad, en route to grandad’s seaside shack. But grandad, an eccentric artist, is not there. In this unkempt place stuffed with memories, it seems that the Holidays - instead of getting away from it all - have taken a lot with them.'

Source: Queensland Theatre Company.

2016-2017 winner y separately published work icon Rice Michele Lee , 2014 Fortitude Valley : Playlab , 2016 9703058 2014 single work drama

'Rice explores the business of global food production, namely rice, and women in business. There are two main characters. The central character is Nisha. She’s 28, a young and precocious corporate hotshot working as the Executive Officer of Golden Fields, Australia’s biggest rice company. She’s a second generation Indian. Yvette is 61, Chinese; she’s a cleaner in the Golden Fields building. Golden Fields is in Melbourne; Nisha and Yvette play all the other characters.

'Nisha is close to sealing a confidential contract with the Indian government, which would see Golden Fields taking over India’s public food distribution systems – rice is a major staple distributed through this system. This secret contract is worth billions. When a flood in one of the southern states in India looks to distract the government and delay the deal, Nisha decides that she needs to go to India to finalise the contract in person, taking with her Graeme, the CEO, and Tom, the marketing manager that Nisha has romantic feelings for.

'Yvette’s daughter, Sheree, is facing charges for a protest that resulted in the assault of the CEO of Coles.'

Source: Author's website ( (Sighted: 12/07/2016)

2014-2015 winner y separately published work icon Oedipus Doesn't Live Here Anymore Daniel Evans , 2015 Fortitude Valley : Playlab , 2015 7896507 2015 single work drama

'What if Oedipus lived next door? What if the whole street knew what he’d been up to with his own mother, because of the word daubed in fluorescent letters on his garage door?

'Queensland Premier’s Drama Award winner Daniel Evans brings the drama and horror of an Ancient Greek myth to the sleepy cul-de-sacs of modern Australian disturbia in this wild, wonderful ride spinning off from Sophocles’ 2500-year-old Theban plays. Evans (The China Incident, I Want to Know What Love Is, I Should Have Drunk More Champagne) shines a blacklight into the bedrooms and basements of the most infamous family in mythology by reimagining them as the unseen but most gossiped-about family on the block.

'In this dark and savagely funny play we’re led by a chorus of quirky characters into the secret, tragic, desperate lives of a family cursed to be the centre of attention. Evans asks what devils lurk in our own backyards? How do tight-knit communities cope with unspeakable tragedy? How do we point the finger when there’s nowhere to lay the blame? And who ends up playing the monster?

'Oedipus Doesn’t Live Here Anymore is the story of a tragedy no one saw coming, but everyone wants to talk about.' (Production summary)

2012-2013 winner y separately published work icon Trollop Maxine Mellor , David Morton , Wesley Enoch , Pete Foley , Ben Hughes , 2011 Brisbane : Playlab , 2013 6485116 2011 single work drama

'Clara lives with her partner, Erik, in a clean, modern home untouched by a flood that has ravaged many parts of their town. Recently unemployed and growing fat and slovenly, her days are spent in front of the television, awash with images of disasters and destruction and programs that flaunt versions of the woman Clara could be if she tried. She is overwhelmed to the point of apathy; immobilised. Feeling so numb, she toys with Erik'’s emotions, and sends him on excursions to fetch her obscure items for a book he has obligated her to make, as if to extract some new reaction from him. She is, perhaps, trying to sabotage their comfort.

'One stormy night, Eugenie comes to the door as a Jehovah'’s Witness to speak to them about the End Days. When she is invited in to take shelter, the evening soon drips with danger, violence, and ugly truths. And Clara’'s hideous troll skin will be revealed and burst open. ' (Publisher's blurb)

2010-2011 winner y separately published work icon Fractions Hypatia Marcel Dorney , 2011 Brisbane : Playlab , 2011 Z1554911 2011 single work drama 'Hypatia (c365-415 CE) was the foremost mathematical authority of her time, an exponent of Platonist philosophy, and as such, a pagan woman on the incipient Christian culture of Egypt. The Life of Hypatia follows her struggles to protect the famous library of Alexandria - the Roman Empire's greatest repository of knowledge - as well as her integrity, in a city where multiple ethnicities, religious and economic interests vie for power in the shadow of a rapidly changing Europe. Source: (Sighted 20/01/2009).
2008-2009 winner y separately published work icon 25 Down Richard Jordan , 2008 Brisbane : Playlab , 2009 Z1644182 2008 single work drama

'James is 25, fresh out of art school and utterly lost. His best friend Emma is stuck in a dead-end job, might be pregnant, and thinks she's in love with James. The trouble is James is gay. Then again, there's always the married man with the comb-over at Emma's work. Simon and Gary also think they might be in love, despite the fact that Gary is old enough to be Simon's dad. Everyone obsesses about passing life's use-by date as they drift through the coffee shops, bars and apartments of Brisbane. Richard Jordan's award-winning new play is a heartfelt slice of sex in our very own city.' Source: (Sighted 10/11/02008).

2006-2007 winner y separately published work icon The Estimator David Brown , 2006 Fortitude Valley : Playlab , 2007 Z1465842 2006 single work drama young adult 'Martin is an estimator for a removal company, professionally trained to help people with the stressful process of moving house. But no amount of training can prepare him for his latest job - Yonni and her granddaughter Sharday share a clutter-filled home in the suburban outskirts, surrounded by mementos of their past, until Yonni's daughter Karen decides it's time for a change. As Martin desperately tries to assist with their move, comic misunderstandings pile up and connections are revealed that turn his life upside down.' Source: (Sighted 04/06/2007).
2004-2005 winner y separately published work icon Mano Nera : Blood, Sweat and Fear in the North Queensland Canefields Adam Grossetti , 2004 Fortitude Valley : Playlab , 2005 Z1199414 2004 single work drama Mano Nera recounts the story of the violent reign of La Mano Nera ('The Black Hand') among Italian immigrants in Far North Queensland in the 1930s.
2002-2003 winner Road to the She-Devil's Salon Sven Swenson , 2003 single work drama
— Appears in: Vertigo and the Virginia; Road to the She-Devil's Salon : Two Plays from the Sundial Series 2003; (p. 86-226)