Who Are the Playwrights

Nkenna Akunna

Resident Playwright

2024 — 2031

Nkenna Akunna (she/they) is an Igbo playwright, screenwriter, performer and lecturer from London whose work centers the queer Black feminine grappling with interiority and against erasure. Nkenna’s debut play cheeky little brown opened at Bristol Old Vic and toured the UK to critical acclaim. Their work has also been produced by tiata fahodzi, Soho Rep, Bushwick Starr, Brown University, Tamasha, Poleroid Theatre, and Courting Drama. Currently: MTC Sloan commission and screen projects in development. Previously: 2023-24 Ars Nova Play Group, 2023 Royal Court/SISTER PICTURES Writers Group, 2022-23 Soho Repertory Theater Writer Director Lab, 2023 MacDowell Fellow, 2023 Hedgebrook Writer-in-Residence, 2022-23 Dramatist Guild Fellow finalist, 2022 Bruntwood Prize longlist, 2021 Papatango Playwriting Prize, 2021 Neukom Institute Literary Award, 2021 Women’s Prize shortlist, 2021 Playwriting Fellow at Sewanee Writers’ Conference, 2021 Playwrights Realm International Theatermakers Award,  2020 KCACTF Rosa Parks Playwriting Award, 2020 KCACTF Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award. BA: Dartmouth College. MFA: Brown University, where Nkenna was recipient of the Lucille Lortel Playwriting Fellowship. Nkenna was also Co-Director at Skin Deep Media CIC, a collective that makes space for Black creatives and creatives of color through cultural production. nkennaakunna.com