The Seventh Martin Lysicrates Prize Event takes place at the Parramatta Riverside Theatres at 11am on Tuesday 30th July 2024! We are capacity and cannot take any further bookings.

However, schools can still watch the live proceedings by streaming through our website on the actual day. If this cannot be arranged, then students can still participate by watching the video at any time for 4 weeks following the event and still vote!



Daniel Cullen

Dan Cullen is one of Australia’s most accomplished emerging writers. It is his aim to create high quality Australian stories for domestic and international audiences, with a focus on musical theatre.

His professional debut, Dubbo Championship Wrestling, premiered at the Hayes and Riverside Theatres in 2022, receiving critical acclaim. This work received the USU’s Bright Ideas Grant, the Eric H. Weinberger Award for Emerging Librettists, and was selected for development as part of the national competition New Musicals Australia. Since then, Dan has workshopped the show through Hayes Creative Development, and run development workshops with the Victorian College of the Arts.

In 2020, Dan was selected for mentorship as part of the Sparrow Mentors program by Broadway composer Eddie Perfect, who also appeared on the Dubbo Championship Wrestling album, along with David Campbell, Lucy Durack, i0ta, and many other stars of the Australian stage and screen. His first musical, Musical of Thrones, played the Sydney and Adelaide Fringe Festivals in 2016 & 2017, for which he wrote, directed, and played Jon Snow (he will trot out his impression with very little provocation).

Dan holds Arts and Law Degrees from Sydney University, where he spent most of his time writing sketches and parody lyrics for the faculty revues, his favourite being his role as music director and bandleader for the 2015 Jewish Revue Sabbathday Night Fever. During this time he co-founded the 10,080 Project at Macquarie University, wherein he and his collaborators wrote a short musical in a week. He is currently completing his Masters of Dramatic Writing at NIDA.

Dan is an active member of the prestigious BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop and is working with Amas Theatre to develop Dubbo Championship Wrestling for an industry presentation in New York in 2025. Dan is currently working with Conga Line Productions and Perpetual Entertainment adapting Dubbo Championship Wrestling for the screen.


James Elazzi

James is an award winning playwright, screenwriter and director. His plays have been nominated in the NSW Premier's Literary Award three years consecutively, shortlisted twice in the Rodney Seaborne Award, four time award winner in the Sydney Theatre Awards and is a three time Silver Gull Playwriting Award Nominee.

James was Assistant Director on Holding the Man (2024 Belvoir St Theatre). His new work, Karim will open in July 20224. James' sold out theatre stage plays include Son of Byblos (Belvoir St Theatre 25A), Lady Tabouli (National Theatre of Parramatta), Queen Fatima (National Theatre of Parramatta) and Omar and Dawn (KXT). In 2023-2024, James wrote, directed and produced his second short film about Lebanese migration, Seeds of Gold. In 2022, James directed and produced his short film Yannis which has officially been selected in more than 17 Film Festivals around the world including Los Angeles, Poland, Lebanon, Greece and Italy.

It has since won Best Performances in the 2022 LGBTQI+ Los Angeles Film Festival and nominated 7 times in the Made in The West Film Festival, including best director and screenplay, winning best Lead Actor.


Izabella Louk

Izabella Louk is a writer, performer, and producer working on Gadigal Land. She studied Theatre and Mandarin at Drew University (NJ, USA), and while in the US also performed and studied with the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, interned with Broadway casting company The Telsey Office, associate produced NJPAC’s 10th Annual Alvin Ailey Day of Dance, and studied with Tectonic Theater Project before going on to co-write Stillwater, a co-production with Tectonic which premiered in New York in 2019.

Izabella was selected for ATYP’s 2021 National Writing Studio, where her play FISH DOOF was performed as a part of the Intersection Festival at The Rebel Theatre, and published in the play anthology Intersection: Bloom. In 2022, Izabella was selected for Fresh Ink, ATYP’s year-long writing mentorship program. Izabella was shortlisted for KXT’s inaugural 2023 David Bathur Creative Fellowship, and in 2024 won Shellharbour’s Incubator Artist Residency. She also works as a freelance dramaturg.

Environmental activism and community building are at the forefront of all of Izabella’s work. She is the founder and creative director of Blinking Light; an environmentally sustainable theatre company dedicated to creating bold works of theatre that build community, spread joy, and further the fight against climate change.