From the Newsroom

Clarence Village resident Steve North proudly holds his framed certificate after submitting a winning entry into the nationwide Sage Age Playwriting Competition. Image: Emma Pritchard

Write time and pace for local playwright

Emma Pritchard

Steve North said it was fate after a play he wrote a couple of years ago was recently announced as one of eight winners in the nationwide Sage Age Playwriting Competition.

Entitled The Last Rehearsal, Mr North’s play is based on a theatre group who are preparing to rehearse ahead of an upcoming performance, but unbeknownst to their director, the play features only one character alongside several imaginary ones, leading to a tale of immense surprise, comic relief, and intriguing curiosity.

An active member of the local theatre community in Grafton, Mr North has always been interested in creative and performing arts and was encouraged to enter the competition, which was open to all Australian residents aged over 60, by staff at Clarence Village in Grafton where he presently resides.

Describing himself as humbled by his success, Mr North said it was quite unexpected when he learned The Last Rehearsal had been chosen as one of the winning entries from 164 plays.

“I never thought anything like this would happen to me,” he said.

“But I told myself, ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’, so when I was encouraged to enter I thought I would give it a go.

“To end up being announced as one of the winners, well, I was very surprised but very grateful to have been given the opportunity to share The Last Rehearsal.

“It was fate.

“It was meant to happen at the right time and place.”

Mr North travelled to Sydney last month to watch his play being performed at the Walsh Bay Arts Precinct as a script reading by award winning actress Sandy Gore, who he said delivered the lines beautifully and perfectly captured the essence of The Last Rehearsal.

“My play was the last one to be performed and the response from the crowd was fantastic,” he said.

“There was around 160 people in the audience, and the comments I received afterwards were just music to my ears, which was wonderful.

“There was also a community theatre group in Sydney who reached out to me for permission to perform my play, which I was happy to consent to.

“It was all very exciting, and I just feel so humbled by the experience.”

Mr North said there are currently plans underway to organise a local performance of The Last Rehearsal, adding he would be more than happy to share further information with the Clarence Valley Independent as soon as details are confirmed.