The 2017 Yale Drama Series Prize will be given to Jacqueline Goldfinger for her play Bottle Fly at an upcoming ceremony in London. The award recipient was chosen by playwright Nicholas Wright (Vincent in Brixton, Mrs. Klein), and the play will receive a staged reading in November at the National Theatre Studio.
This year’s runners-up were Andrew Rosendorf for Cottontail and Carla Grauls for Natives.
The Yale Drama Series Prize, now in its 11th year, is given annually for a play by an emerging playwright, selected by a distinguished playwright. The winner receives the David Charles Horn Prize of $10,000, publication of the winning play by Yale University Press, and a staged reading.
Previous winners include John Austin Connolly’s The Boys From Siam (selected by Edward Albee in 2007), Neil Wechsler’s Grenadine (selected by Albee in 2008), Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig’s Lidless (selected by David Hare in 2009), Virginia Grise’s blu (selected by Hare in 2010), Shannon Murdoch’s New Light Shine (selected by John Guare in 2011), Clarence Coo’s Beautiful Province (selected by Guare in 2012), Jen Silverman’s Still (selected by Marsha Norman in 2013), Janine Nabers’s Serial Black Face (selected by Norman in 2014), Barbara Seyda’s Celia, a Slave: 26 Characters Testify (selected by Wright in 2015), and Emily Schwend’s Utility (selected by Wright in 2016).
Bottle Fly is described as a “multi-generational family drama about the masks we wear at home with our family, those we wear out in the world, and the struggle between them. It’s a dinged up, stripped down homage to Mr. Wittgenstein and his poor fly.”
“Set in a bar in the Everglades, Jacqueline Goldfinger’s Bottle Fly brings together a rich variety of American classes, cultures, heritages and desires,” said judge Wright, who chose the play from over 1,000 submissions from 45 countries, in a statement. “Its voice is passionate and straight-from-the-heart; the world it shows us is earthy, cruel and hilarious; the story at its core is one of profound and reckless love.”
Francine Horn, president of the David Charles Horn Foundation, added, “Spending my winters now in Florida not far from the Everglades it was surprising that we would have a winner and a runner-up, Bottle Fly and Cottontail, both writing on its dying cultures, bleakness and the need to escape this wilderness.”
Goldfinger’s play The Arsonists is having a National New Play Network (NNPN) Rolling World Premiere in 2017-2018.
For additional information, visit DCHornFoundation.org.