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Arthur Meek Awarded Bruce Mason Award

Arthur Meek - Bruce Mason Playwriting Award winner 2011
The Bruce Mason Playwriting Award was presented by PLAYMARKET to Arthur Meek at Downstage Theatre in Wellington on 23 November 2011.


The Bruce Mason Playwriting Award was presented by PLAYMARKET to Arthur Meek at Downstage Theatre in Wellington on 23 November 2011.

The award exists to recognise early success in the career of the winning playwright; to encourage their continued exploration of the theatre medium and grants a $10,000 cash prize.

This award recognises Meek’s dedication as a playwright and the quality of his work.

The award winning actor and playwright launched his playwriting career in 2006 with The Cottage set in the toilet stalls of a scandalous local gay club.

On the conditions and possibilities of Helen Clark taking me as her young lover took the country by storm last election year (2008) and was affectionately described as "slightly disturbing, but highly political satire”.

He performed the piece to packed houses, garnering best production of the year nominations and picking up awards throughout the country.   

That same year his Young & Hungry commissioned work Yolk premiered at BATS Theatre and he was commissioned by the Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution to write Charles Darwin: Collapsing Creation as part of worldwide celebrations marking the 150th anniversary of Darwin's masterpiece: On the Origin of Species.

After some time away from playwriting, working as an actor in shows such as The Almighty Johnsons; Nothing Trivial and Underbelly, he this year burst back onto the theatre scene with Sheep, written for Long Cloud Youth Theatre’s summer season and the critically acclaimed On The Upside-Down of the World commissioned, produced and toured by Auckland Theatre Company and based on the 1884 memoirs of Lady Anne Martin - Our Maoris.

Meek is currently shooting a guest-starring role in the fourth season of TVNZ’s Go Girls.

The Bruce Mason Playwriting Award has, since 1983, recognised the work of an outstanding emerging New Zealand playwright.

Previous winners include many of this country’s most celebrated writers including Toa Fraser, Hone Kouka, Briar Grace-Smith and Jo Randerson, and was last year awarded to Eli Kent.

The recipient is decided through voting by a panel of leading Artistic Directors and Script Advisors throughout New Zealand.

The Award is named after the man considered to be New Zealand’s first most significant playwright, Bruce Mason, who died in 1982. His plays are still produced widely today and many, such as The Pohutakawa Tree and End of the Golden Weather (produced by Auckland Theatre Company this year), have come to be considered New Zealand classics.

The Bruce Mason Estate, Downstage Theatre Society and the FAME Trust sponsor the award. 



1983 Fiona Farrell

1984 Simon O'Connor

1985 Stephanie Johnston

1986 Rosie Scott

1987 Sarah Delahunty

1988 Stuart Hoar

1989 James Beaumont

1990 John Broughton

1991 David Geary

1992 Hone Kouka

1993 Vivienne Plumb

1994 Duncan Sarkies

1995 Briar Grace Smith

1996 John Vakidis

1997 Jo Randerson

1998 Oscar Kightley

1999 Toa Fraser

2000 Stuart McKenzie

2001 Victor Rodger

2002 Mitch Tawhi Thomas

2003 no award

2004 no award

2005 no award

2006 Albert Belz

2007 Michael Galvin 

2008 Paul Rothwell

2009 Pip Hall

2010 Eli Kent

2011 Arthur Meek



Further information: 

IMAGE CREDIT: Wallace Chapman

If you have any questions or require further information please get in touch with me.

Aneta Ruth

Playmarket I Communications

+64 4 382 8462 ext 2

Written by


25 Nov 2011

Interests New Zealand Playwrights’ Agent. Advisor. Bookshop.