Getting to know our shortlist: Neil Walden

As we move closer to announcing the  winner of the 2017 Liverpool Hope Playwriting Prize on March 27th, find out more about our top 6…

Writer: Neil Walden, Gloucestershire

Play: Absoluted

Absoluted tells the story of an exhausted nun who arrives at the hideout of a criminal gang lying low after a huge robbery. The unity of the gang is soon disrupted by the nun, who it seems is seeking some kind of sanctuary herself.

Neil, who was born in Windsor and used to live in Wales, was inspired to write the play after writing a series of local history books about true crimes, and by his interest in heist stories. Neil has had one-act plays performed at the Actor’s Studio in Liverpool as part of the Second Write Now festival, at Liverpool’s Unity theatre, and festivals around the UK. He has also taken part in script slams in South Wales.

Neil was inspired to write the play after writing a series of local history books about true crimes, and by his interest in heist stories.

Neil said: “Absoluted poses the question of whether there are any similarities between organised crime and organised religion. I realise that this makes it sound a bit heavy, but be assured that it is quite definitely a comedy! One of the characters observes ‘Aren’t the nuns supposed to offer the crooks sanctuary?’ Well, not in this case they don’t! The boot is on the other foot.”

Neil added: “I am always hoping to get my work staged, but the opportunities are very few and far between. When I saw it announced, I was particularly keen to enter The Liverpool Hope Playwriting prize. That the competition has involved important organisations, and lined up a really impressive panel of judges was one of my reasons for entering. I couldn’t be more pleased that Absoluted has been shortlisted.”

 

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