Now in its twentieth year, the prestigious Griffin Award recognises an outstanding play or performance text that displays an authentic, inventive and contemporary Australian voice, with the winner receiving a $10,000 prize. The Award has a long history of recognising new talent and cementing the careers of Australian writers, as the Honour Board of Griffin Award winners attests.
This year, 95 entries were received. The plays were read anonymously by a panel of artists charged with the unenviable task of whittling them down to a shortlist of just five. This shortlist was then put before a judging panel of industry leaders who chose the winner.
The winner of this year’s award is David Finnigan for Kill Climate Deniers. David Finnigan is a writer, theatre-maker and pharmacy assistant from Canberra. He is a member of science-theatre ensemble Boho and an associate of Coney and the Sipat Lawin Ensemble. David is also a Churchill Fellow and an Australia Council Early Career Fellow. His winning play Kill Climate Deniers is a sharp and satirical look at politics that examines what happens when the two-party political system comes face to face with a global-scale crisis unfolding over decades. This is the story of an explosive attack on Australia’s Parliament House by a group of eco-terrorists during a Fleetwood Mac concert, and the Environment Minister’s one-woman war to take her country back.
The other shortlisted plays for 2017 were:
Kit Brookman for The Bees Are All Dead
Ang Collins for Blueberry Play
Emme Hoy for Extinction of the Learned Response
Brooke Robinson for Good Cook. Friendly. Clean.
GRIFFIN AWARD HONOUR BOARD
2017 David Finnigan Kill Climate Deniers
2016 Melissa Reeves The Zen of Table Tennis
2015 Stephen Carleton The Turquoise Elephant
2014 Angus Cerini The Bleeding Tree
2013 Donna Abela Jump for Jordan
2012 Vivienne Walshe This is Where We Live
2011 Rick Viede A Hoax
2010 Aidan Fennessy Brutopia
2009 Lachlan Philpott Silent Disco
2008 Rick Viede Whore
2007 Damien Millar Emergency Sex and Other Desperate Measures
2006 Mary Rachel Brown Australian Gothic
2005 Ian Wilding The Carnivores
2004 Debra Oswald Mr Bailey’s Minder
2003 Brendan Cowell Rabbit
2002 Noëlle Janaczewska Songket and Patrick Van der Werf Presence
2001 Verity Laughton Burning
2000 Ian Wilding Below
1999 Neil Cole Alive at Williamstown Pier
1998 Catherine Zimdahl Clark in Sarajevo
The Griffin Award is generously supported by Copyright Agency Limited.