As a commitment to nurturing artists we provide a number of award opportunities.


The 2018 Balnaves Foundation Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Fellowship


Belvoir is now accepting entries for The 2018 Balnaves Foundation Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Fellowship, an evolution of the Balnaves Foundation Indigenous Playwright Award.

In 2018 the Award is taking an exciting new shape and will now become a fellowship, which will see the winner given the opportunity to work within Belvoir in 2019 as a resident artist and receive $25,000 over a year-long period to create their new work. Also in 2018, the award will also broaden to also encompass directors who can drive the creation of a new, Indigenous-led, stage work, whether that be a new play, an adaptation or through a devised process.

The Balnaves Award has long been recognised as one of the most prestigious playwriting awards in Australia, attracting entrants of the highest calibre. Previous winners (including Leah Purcell, Megan Wilding, Nakkiah Lui and Ursula Yovich) have submitted exceptional works that consistently prove the depth of talent in amongst our nation’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander theatre-makers.

Actor and Gamilaroi woman Megan Wilding won the award in 2017 with a commission to write a play about an Indigenous woman who takes violent revenge against a man who sexually assaulted her as a child.

Since 2011 The Balnaves Foundation has supported the presentation of two Indigenous-led works per year as part of Belvoir’s annual season. To further their commitment to the telling of Indigenous stories through theatre, the Foundation has committed $20,000 per year to this annual award for an Indigenous playwright. The Balnaves Foundation is committed to working towards reconciliation and has supported numerous Indigenous arts projects including the creative development of I Am Eora and Black Diggers for Sydney Festival.

Entries close 6pm Monday 6th August and the winner will be announced on 3rd September, as part of Belvoir’s 2019 Season Launch.

Download the 2018 Appliaction Form here
Download the 2018 Submission Guidelines here.




2017 – Megan Wilding
2016 – Ursula Yovich
2015 –
Katie Beckett
2014 –
Leah Purcell
2013 –
Jada Alberts
2012 – 
Nakkiah Lui


The NSW Philip Parsons
Fellowship for Emerging Playwrights

On 7 December 2015 the Fellowship was jointly awarded to two people – Nakkiah Lui and S. Shakthidharan. Read the media release.

About the Fellowship & previous recipients
The NSW Philip Parsons Fellowship for Emerging Playwrights and Memorial Lecture commemorate the life’s work of Philip Parsons AM (1926-1993). Dr Parsons was an influential teacher and mentor to many of the students, scholars, actors, directors and playwrights who created the new wave of theatre and drama in the 1970s. Both the Fellowship and Lecture are part of artist development activities at Belvoir.

The Fellowship is presented, in partnership with Arts NSW, to an emerging playwright whose work demonstrates an original and compelling theatrical voice. The Fellowship money forms a $12,500 commissioning fee for the writer and $7,500 towards a creative development, with a view to developing a new work with support from Belvoir’s artistic staff. (Note: This Fellowship replaces the Philip Parsons Young Playwright’s Award previously offered by Belvoir and Arts NSW)

Applications are accepted from NSW-based writers whose plays have had a public showing or season in Australia or internationally within the last 12 months. Submitted plays will be assessed by the Fellowship panel and shortlisted writers chosen on the strength of these works. Shortlisted writers will be asked to submit a brief treatment and up to five pages of scene work for a proposed new piece.


Past recipients

2015 – Nakkiah Lui and S.Shakthidharan

2014 – Julia-Rose Lewis

2013 – Ian Meadows

2012 – Kit Brookman

2011 – Zoe Coombs Marr

2010 – Matthew Whittet

2009 – Tahli Corin

2008 – Khoa Do

2007 – Tommy Murphy

2006 – Patrick Brammall and John Leary

2005 – Brendan Cowell

2004 – Kate Mulvany

2003 – Jonathan Gavin