A few weeks ago, we were delighted to announce our partnership with Youth Theatre Ireland on a new project that is very close to our collective heart. We created The George B. Miller Award to help playwrights who write for young ensembles get their ideas into produced plays.
Today we thought we'd introduce you to the giant of theatre that was George B. Miller and why we HAD TO name our award in his honour.
When it comes to communicating why we named this award in George’s honour, I find there are not enough words or ways to explain the brilliance of this inspirational man. You might have learnt by now about his incredible career in theatre spanning five decades. If not, you can read all about his background here HERE
Lisa and I were starting to find our respective paths in the forest of performing arts, when we each encountered the work of George B. Miller. To say that he had an influence over us, is like saying that children enjoy getting presents from Santa Claus - understatement of all understatements.
George found talent in you, that you did not know you possessed. He fostered self-belief and trust in yourself and the creative process that had the capacity to create a seismic shift in one’s thinking and actions. He changed lives, he enriched artists with gifts that degrees and doctorates will never teach you.
When I first met George and his comrade in theatre and life, Kate Scuffle, I only ever wanted to act. I had not for a second considered that I could do anything other than that. Within a short space of time, George had me writing, producing, collaborating, even running lights, all woven through a tapestry of kindness and encouragement, that I have still to this day, not found anywhere else in anyone I have met. These are values woven into the very fabric of our festival, it’s a nourishing environment that allows the artist to thrive.
The lightbulb moment, in the dark days after George’s passing last April, happened, as tribute after tribute appeared online - an outpouring of stories so similar to mine, spanning generations and continents. Through this avalanche of emotion, what emerged was the realization that George was not just a mentor, friend and leader for us the co-creators of Scripts, but he served in that capacity for literally countless artists that had those same life-altering experiences when they worked with him. That is what prompted the idea, that the spirit of George needed to be preserved and emulated through an award that could provide the avenue to explore new works with emerging artists that would give young actors the means to explore contemporary drama
In recognition of George's ability to inspire, motivate and encourage young voices to find themselves through the process of bringing a script to life, we approached Youth Theatre Ireland with the idea of this, being bestowed on ideas for plays or playwrights that relate to youth themes.
This award, we hope, will sow seeds and continue the legacy of an inspirational giant of a man, that did great things with immense kindness.
Time to follow in George's footstep and inspire your friends and family.
If you know someone with an amazing talent that only needs nurturing, do spread the word and encourage them to apply for the George B. Miller Award HERE.
All they need is an idea and our mentor will help them bring that idea to theatrical life!