The Bill Cashmore Award 2020-21: Pic N Mix
The winner of the Bill Cashmore Award 2020 is Alfiah Brown with her play Pic N Mix. We have skipped a year of production due to Covid but it will go ahead in March 2022. Alfiah has been perfecting her plans for Pic N Mix all year and you will see the results of her work and dedication a mere one year later than we originally planned.
Alfiah beat forty-five applicants to win this year’s Award. Pic N Mix is a timely exploration of what it is like growing up with mixed heritage in modern Britain. The Covid pandemic has meant we have all had to work somewhat differently this year, but despite all the issues, Alfiah and the Lyric have been working hard to develop her show during these difficult times. The ongoing uncertainty means we cannot yet say when it will premiere, but premiere it will, and I will announce that longed-for date here, as soon as we are able to plan with more certainty.
Alfiah’s win came at the end of a long and rigorous search for the right winner. In December 2019, forty-five applicants arrived on our desks, and were whittled down to twenty. These lucky twenty were given the opportunity, in February 2020, to perform a nine-minute Scratch piece revealing their idea, in front of a paying audience, at this year’s Evolution Festival. A shortlist of five exceptional creatives were then given a week-long residency at the Lyric. This gave them the chance to develop their ideas further, under the guidance of Lyric staff members, and with workshops from others currently working in the industry as actors, directors and writers.
At the end of this amazing week, they again performed their re-worked piece in front of an audience, at “The Bill Cashmore Showcase” on March 13th, 2020.
The audience comprised some of the biggest players in the theatre industry – agents, producers, casting directors, artistic directors of other theatres, and more. This ensured that not only our ultimate Award winner would benefit, but that all the shortlisted artists were in fact winners in having had this platform to try out their work and their ideas in front of people who may be able to help further their careers in other ways.
Our eventual winner, Alfiah Brown, has gone on to gain from the support and advice needed to develop her idea into an hour-long play which will headline the Lyric’s Evolution Festival 2021. But we can only do that with your help. So please donate.