Charlene James

Playwright
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Biography

Charlene James is an award-winning playwright and an actor who trained at Birmingham School of Acting and The School at Steppenwolf, Chicago. 

In 2008, she participated in the Royal Court’s Young Writers Programme and in 2012 she was selected to be one of the 503 Five at Theatre 503. In 2013 Charlene became a writer in residence at the Birmingham Rep for their season focusing on mental health.

Her play, Tweet Tweet, was commissioned by the Birmingham Rep as part of Young Theatre Makers. It premiered at The Birmingham Rep before touring. 

Charlene was awarded the Alfred Fagon Award, for best new play at the National Theatre for Cuttin' It, a play focusing on Female Genital Mutilation.

Charlene was awarded the George Devine Award 2015 for the same play as well as winning a BBC Audio Drama award for her radio adaptation of Cuttin' It. 

She is a Jerwood New Playwright 2016 and is currently under commission from RADA, Royal Court and Royal Exchange Manchester. 

CV

Theatre

Writer

 

Co-commission between Royal Court and Talawa.

Royal Court, Talawa
 
 
Royal Exchange
 
Cuttin' It
George Devine Award, Alfred Fagon Award
Director Gbolahan Obisesan
Starring
  • Adelayo Adedayo
  • Tsion Habte
  •  

    Follows two 15 year-old girls from Somali backgrounds and their experiences of FGM. 

    Young Vic, Royal Court Theatre
     
    Director Tom Saunders
     

    Produced as part of a Young Theatre Makers partnership. 

    Birmingham Repertory Theatre
     
    Director Monique Sterling
    Starring
  • Helen Embleton
  •  
    Short play as part of Miniaturists 42
    Arcola Theatre
     
     
    New full-length play focusing on the effect of incest
    Talawa Firsts
     
     
    Play presented in Shh!, a series of short plays by the Theatre 503 Five
     
     
    Grief and loss are explored in a play about what geography says about where you really are
     
    Maybe Father
    Shortlisted for the Alfred Fagon Award 2009
    Producer Talawa Theatre Company
     
    Play about fatherhood and motherhood and the meaning of commitment
    Young Vic as part of 'Flipping the Script'
     

    Radio

    Writer

    Cuttin It'
    WINNER BBC Audio Drama Award
    2015
     

    Radio adaptation of her award winning play. 

    Production Company BBC
    Broadcaster BBC Radio 4
     

    TV

    Writer

    Producer Rachelle Constant
     

    Monologue piece as part of the BBC's The Break short films. 

    BBC for BBC 3