2021 - A fabulous year of firsts for the Martin-Lysicrates Competition

October 5th, 2021

  • The first year that kids could vote – in their classrooms – on a live stream of the event
  • The first year that more than 1000 kids voted – in NSW, Victoria, Queensland, W.A., and even England!
  • The first year that over 25 schools participated – from 9 in 2019!
  • The first year that dozens of principals and teachers got inspired to participate!

Image 1: From right to left, the Governor- General of Australia, Gen. David Hurley AC DSC FTSE, and Mrs Hurley, the Patron of the Lysicrates Foundation, Bob Dwyer, Lord Mayor of Parramatta and John Azarias, co-founder of Lysicrates Foundation.

Image 2: Mrs Hurley not only presented the Theatre Audience Prize but sang us through her signature Lysicrates song!

Image 3: It was part of the dream that kids from all over Sydney should participate. So how thrilling it was to see the diverse mix of kids both in the theatre and online.

Image 4: Here’s a link to the inspiring introduction from John Azarias at the beginning of the event.

Don Harwin MLC, NSW Arts Minister, delivered a much- appreciated address when he announced the winner on 25 June 2021, nine days after the event.


The winner of the 2021 Martin Lysicrates Prize was MADELAINE NUNN for the funny, thought- provoking first act of her play titled “Seeing Double”, a riff on identity in the age of social media.
She received a full commission totalling $15,000 to write the rest of the play, with the help of the Australian Theatre for Young People.

With warm thanks to the incredible principals and teachers from 26 schools, who believed their students would be inspired by Martin-Lysicrates, and who organised their attendance, collected the votes, and gave terrific feedback.

1061 kids voted. They came from 26 schools around Australia. One school in England also voted.

Watch the highlights here.

Have a look at the program here.

Pictured Above: Scenes from the three finalists: - Seeing Double by Madelaine Nunn - The Mysterious Disappearance (and most likely murder) of Christine Babbernock by Jacob Parker - Total Eclipse of the Heart by Keziah Warner and the winning playwright, Madelaine Dunn. 

Students from every background appreciated the high level of writing, acting and directing that took place.

Attendance and voting on the day at Riverside: ASPIRE, Camden High School, Elizabeth McArthur High School, Greenacre Baptist. Marsden High School, Sydney Home Education Network, Sydney Technical High School and Wilkins Public School

Voting from the Livestream: Carinya Christian School, Cranbrook, Goondiwindi State High School (QLD), Livingstone Christian College (QLD), Nowra Anglican College and Xavier High (VIC)

Voting from recording of Livestream: Batemans' Bay High School, Collarenebri Central School, Craigslea State High School, Edenhope College (VIC), Elisabeth Murdoch College (VIC), Geelong High School (VIC), Horris Hill (UK), Numurkah Secondary College (VIC), St Andrews Grammar (WA), St Mary's College Gunnedah and Trinity Grammar (VIC).

Without Create NSW and St. George Foundation, there would have been no event at all. So very very big thanks to both of them.