Writer Kirsten impresses critics with her reviews

Kirsten Luckins made it to the final of a national magazine's critics competition.
Kirsten Luckins made it to the final of a national magazine's critics competition.

Writer Kirsten Luckins has won rave reviews for her rave reviews.

Forty-three-year-old Kirsten made it through to the final of The Stage theatre newspaper’s national Critic Search 2015 competition – despite being new to reviewing.

Kirsten was delighted to make the final 11 from more than 300 entries.

Kirsten was delighted to make the final 11 from more than 300 entries.

Kirsten, who is North East Programme Coordinator for performance poetry organisation Apples and Snakes, posts film and theatre reviews on her blog www.imeldasays.tumblr.com

Poet-in-residence on the ‘Heroism & Heartbreak’ project, part of Hartlepool History Then And Now, she started reviewing on behalf of the North East Artist Development Network, which works with performers and groups across the region.

“They had 10 new reviewers go out and critique companies across the region, North East reviewers supporting North East companies and spreading the word about new work,” she said.

“I had been to a workshop run by Maddy Costa, who is a critic in London, and I started experimenting with new ways of writing reviews.

Kirsten Luckins

I didn’t expect to get anywhere really, but I made it through to the final.

“I had written a review of a piece called The Ted Bundy Project and I showed it to Maddy. She said, ‘That’s fantastic, you should enter this competition’.

“I didn’t expect to get anywhere really, but I made it through to the final.

“I didn’t get through to the last three, unfortunately, but I got through to the last 11 out of more than 300 entries, so I was pretty chuffed with that.

Alistair Smith, editor of The Stage, said the standard of entry had been extremely high: “We were delighted with the hundreds of entries we received to our open call for submissions to The Stage Critic Search.

“The entrants came from the length and breadth of the Britain, with a range of ages and backgrounds.

“Our 11 chosen finalists all showed huge promise and the judging panel had a difficult task in choosing a final three.

“The sheer volume of entries we received demonstrated just what an appetite there is to engage critically with theatre, and the quality of the entrants bodes very well for the future of theatre criticism across the country.”