LOS ANGELES—The Armenian Dramatic Arts Alliance (ADAA) announced the winner of the $10,000 Saroyan/Paul Human Rights Playwriting Prize on April 24 th, 2017 at the The Antaeus Theatre Company at the newly opened Kiki and David Gindler Performing Arts Centre in Glendale. The winner was June Carryl, for her play, The Good Minister From Harare, a play about the little talked about genocide in Zimbabwe under Robert Mugabe. More than 300 entries from around the world illustrated stories about the human condition and were scored by over 120 theatre professionals worldwide.
ADAA is proud to administer the only Human Rights playwriting award in the world since 2014, highlighting global stories of human rights and social justice. Renowned judges this year included Rob Drummer, Associate Dramaturg and Director from the Bush Theatre in London; Neil McPherson, Artistic Director of the Finborough Theatre in London since 1999; and Simon Levy, Artistic Director of the Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles since 1993.
The winner of this year's award, June Carryl, is a playwright and actor with a background in Political Science and English Literature. Her other plays include Stone Angels and God's Wife. June received her $10,000 Saroyan/Paul Prize and crystal trophy at ADAA's April 24 performance event, from two luminaries: Emmy-winning Director Hank Saroyan, nephew of author William Saroyan; and Karen Kondazian, award-winning actress and ADAA founding board member.
The two finalists for the 2016 Saroyan/Paul Human Rights Playwriting Prize were: Runaway Home, by Jeremy J. Kamps, about fourteen year-old Kali and her mother Eunice returning to the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans two years after Hurricane Katrina to find that “home” is no longer there; and The Madres by Stephanie Alison Walker, where in 1976 Buenos Aires, two mothers search covertly for Belen, nine months pregnant and one of the many disappeared people in Argentina's so-called “Dirty War.”
Both of these finalists have recently received commitments for full Los Angeles productions: Runaway Home at the Fountain Theatre, and The Madres at the Skylight Theatre.
April 24 saw unforgettable readings of excerpts of all three plays with the Antaeus Theatre Company. These pieces were directed by Michael Peretzian, Emily Chase and John Sloan and produced by Bianca Bagatourian.
The cast included some of the finest actors in Los Angeles:
The Good Minister From Harare - Brittney Wheeler, Matt Orduna, Terry Woodberry, Inger Tudor, Basil Wallace, and William Mitchell.
The Madres - Arianna Ortiz and Denise Blasor.
Runaway Home - Sola Bamis, Ukamaka Izuchi, Daniel Watts and Yvonne Lee.
The performances were followed by the announcement of the winner and a VIP reception at the theatre. Music was provided by Ryan Henry and Photography by John Charles.
The Saroyan/Paul Human Rights Playwriting Prize is made possible by annual support from the William Saroyan Foundation, which inaugurated the award at ADAA in 2008, and the Lillian and Varnum Paul Fund at the Armenian Church Western Diocese, which has supported ADAA's writing prizes since its inception ten years ago.
The Antaeus Theatre Lobby Gallery featured original paintings by William Saroyan, presented by ADAA and the William Saroyan Foundation. The stunning watercolor paintings are available for sale to support ADAA.
Event sponsors and in-kind donors for both nights' events included Phoenicia Restaurant, Falafel Arax, Starbucks,, and Jons Marketplace.
For more information on the awards, the additional runners-up and honorable
mentions for each competition, and more about The Armenian Dramatic Arts Alliance, please visit



June 5 is the Deadline to Apply for $10,000 Award
for Emerging L.A. Theatre Artists 

Center Theatre Group is now accepting submissions for the 2018 Richard E. Sherwood Award. The deadline to submit an application is June 5, 2017, at 11:59 p.m.
The Sherwood Award is an annual $10,000 prize that supports innovative and adventurous theatre artists and engages them in a professional relationship with Center Theatre Group. The award is presented each year at the Ovation Awards ceremony produced by LA Stage Alliance. Two additional finalists will receive a $2,000 honorarium.
Center Theatre Group invites individual emerging artists to submit an application if they have resided in Los Angeles for at least two years and have developed or collaborated in at least two fully produced projects in Los Angeles. Sherwood awardees demonstrate leadership qualities, push existing boundaries and are dedicated to improving the future of their respective artistic fields. Artists are not limited by title, role or genre, but they must have a relationship to contemporary performance rooted in theatre.
Center Theatre Group will also offer two information sessions to prospective applicants on Friday, May 12 at 6pm. (must RSVP by Wednesday, May 10) and Monday, May 22 at 7 p.m. (must RSVP by Thursday, May 18). To RSVP or to receive more information about the sessions, please email Both sessions will be held at The Music Center Annex building, 601 W. Temple Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012.
Created in memory of Richard E. Sherwood, the $10,000 award aims to cultivate emerging theatre artists working in Los Angeles who push formal and aesthetic boundaries and demonstrate dedication to improving their respective artistic fields.
Richard E. Sherwood was a patron of the arts with a special appreciation for emerging artists who are in the vanguard of theatre. He was president and then chairman of the Center Theatre Group Board of Directors from 1980 until his passing in 1993. The 2018 Sherwood Award Accepting Submissions Through June 5 – 2 award is established as an endowed fund at Center Theatre Group by his family, friends, colleagues and fellow board members to honor Sherwood's passionate commitment to theatre.
Past recipients of the Richard E. Sherwood Award include lighting designer Pablo Santiago, Miwa Matreyek of Cloud Eye Control, Sean Cawelti of Rogue Artists Ensemble, Miranda Wright of Los Angeles Performance Practice, Lars Jan of Early Morning Opera, lighting designer Christopher Kuhl and costume designer Ann Closs-Farley, among others.
Center Theatre Group, one of the nation's preeminent arts and cultural organizations, is Los Angeles' leading nonprofit theatre company, programming seasons at the 736-seat Mark Taper Forum and 1600 to 2000-seat Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles, and the 317-seat Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. In addition to presenting and producing the broadest range of theatrical entertainment in the country, Center Theatre Group is one of the nation's leading producers of ambitious new works through commissions and world premiere productions and a leader in interactive community engagement and education programs that reach across generations, demographics and circumstance to serve Los Angeles.
For more information about the Richard E. Sherwood Award, please visit For questions or concerns about the application process or to RSVP to the information sessions, please contact