Australias richest music theatre prize announced

The judges for the Pratt Prize 2006, in place of presenting the award this year, have decided to commission two of the six finalists to create new musicals.
Jeanne Pratt AC announced today that although the judges recognised the talents of the composers and writers whose six musicals were short-listed, no single musical had the potential to be an outstanding success.

As a result, commissions totalling $40,000 have been awarded to:
Anthony Crowley - $10,000 to develop the book for a new musical and $10,000 for research and travel.
Dean Bryant & Mathew Frank - $10,000 each to develop the book and score for a new musical
The judges agreed that, with additional input from leading directors, conductors and choreographers, the selected composers and lyricists would have the opportunity to create outstanding new musicals. 
A requirement of the 2006 awards is that the nominees will be fully committed to work on each project’s development.
Jeanne Pratt said: “I am looking for a great Australian musical and I hope to find it in the talents that Anthony, Dean and Mathew will bring to their commissions.”
The Pratt Foundation awards The Pratt Prize, to a total value of $80,000, every second year to an original work of musical theatre by Australian citizens or residents. The Pratt Prize comprises a cash prize of $50,000 and a workshop production to the value of $30,000.

Past winners are Side Show Alley (Gary Young and Paul Keelan in 2002) and Metro Street (Matthew Robinson in 2004). Both musicals have subsequently been scheduled for commercial productions.

The 2006 award result is unique to this year’s entries. The Pratt Prize will continue to provide major support to composers and writers for musical theatre.

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