In January 2017, alongside its new productions, the Lyric launched its commitment to bring exciting new work to the stage. A six month New Playwrights Programme of development support, in partnership with the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, was set up to encourage and inspire emerging playwrights.
The Lyric had an overwhelming response to the call for scripts from emerging writers, and the selection panel were impressed by the quality, ambition and originality of submitted work. It was announced that the four successful playwrights were Seamus Collins, Erica Murray, Vittoria Cafolla and Andy Doherty.
The four receive intensive support over six months to facilitate them in developing their new work. This culminated in a brilliant showcase of new work in the Naughton Studio in October 2017. The programme also included a public masterclass series with established writers and directors, benefitting all local writers.