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2021 Winner

The Women’s Prize for Playwriting 2021 was awarded to Consumed by Karis Kelly.

Selected by our judging panel from over 850 submissions, Consumed will be produced in 2023.

Left to Right: Ellie Keel (Founder and Director, Women’s Prize for Playwriting); Karis Kelly; Katie Posner (Co-Artistic Direct, Paines Plough).


It’s Eileen’s 90th birthday, and her neurotic daughter Gilly is fussing, trying to organise her impending party. Gilly hasn’t finished unpacking the shopping when her high-flying daughter Jenny arrives from London with her worryingly thin daughter Muireann in tow. That makes four generations of Gillespie women in one room, and you could cut the tension with a knife.

As the women prepare for a party that no one seems to want, the atmosphere turns decidedly sinister as deep-rooted recriminations and accusations fly out of the women like weapons. Obsessions and compulsions have spread through the lineage like poison.

This is a house full of hungry ghosts and there’s definitely a few skeletons in the closet…

Karis Kelly

” I’m absolutely blown away to be the Winner of the 2021 Women’s Prize for Playwriting. In today’s theatre ecology, we really do need programmes that highlight female and female identifying voices. I’m so proud to be a part of its legacy.

Like many others in the arts, during the pandemic, I had a complete crisis of faith, and was considering a complete career change! So, to go from that point, to receiving recognition from such an amazing prize and panel of judges is genuinely a dream come true.”



Karis Kelly

Karis Kelly is a playwright, theatre maker and educator. She has previously been the Literary Assistant at the Bush Theatre and Literary Associate at Theatre503 and has been awarded the 2022 Peggy Ramsay Bursary to be the writer in residence at The Lyric, Belfast. Her short plays have been performed at Hampstead Theatre, Gate Theatre and Arcola Theatre, and presented by Hightide Theatre and Headlong.