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Thursday, September 20, 2018

Mid-America Theatre Conference seeks 10 minute plays

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Playwriting Symposium—Call for Ten-Minute Plays

The Playwriting Symposium of the Mid-America Theatre Conference seeks submissions of new, unproduced ten-minute plays by playwrights who wish to participate in our Dramatists Play Lab. All submissions must be received by OCTOBER 1, 2018.

The all-conference theme for our 2019 conference in Cleveland is “Invention.” Whether born of necessity or sheer inspiration, from manifestos to manifestations of our creativity, how do theatres and practitioners design, innovate, and invent? How do historians address inventions or invent new histories? How do these inventions reshape our understanding of our histories, practices, and possibilities on the page, the stage, in the archives, and our classrooms? What gizmos, contraptions, and whirligigs, material or abstract, support our curiosity, passion, discoveries, and experimentation? How might a work’s reception be shaped/reshaped through invention? What inventions are waiting on the horizon? We invite you to explore ways in which we devise, adapt, improvise, and inspire original ideas in our practices, pedagogies, stories, histories, and historiographies. We encourage playwrights to consider the all-conference theme as a springboard to generate plays that problematize traditional stories and structures, although submissions not directly related to the conference theme will be considered as well.

The Playwriting Symposium invites proposals of 10-minute scripts around the theme of “Invention.” This is a juried event, and while we invite all playwrights to submit, the call for scripts is directed primarily at academic playwrights who are faculty members or graduate students and/or professionals in the field who seek the opportunity to present their work and receive feedback from their peers. First-time conference attendees are welcome to submit! Cleveland is a popular conference site for MATC, so we are particularly eager for your help in spreading the word to playwrights in colleges, universities and professional communities within easy travel distance from our conference site!

The selected plays will be rehearsed and presented as staged readings during the Playwriting Symposium sessions. Each play will have an assigned team of a director, dramaturg, actors and possibly scenographers and stage managers. Each ten-minute play receives limited rehearsal time at the conference. All participants assigned to a given project will have the final script in hand prior to the start of the conference. A small number of additional plays will be selected for cold readings as a part of our annual Fringe Festival.

All selected playwrights must register for the conference and are expected to attend rehearsals for their play and participate in a post-reading discussion. Alas, there is no funding from the conference for travel or lodging costs.

Scripts must be typewritten using Samuel French or similar guidelines with a Times New Roman 12-point font.

Scripts may not exceed ten minutes in length. We will NOT accept plays with longer run times. Please time your plays prior to submission. A general page estimate for a 10-minute play includes approximately 8-9 pages, although this is clearly not an exact science. Scripts with fast-paced dialogue are often much shorter in time than plays with extensive monologues.

Due to the nature of the conference, please limit your script to two-four actors. Roles may be doubled within our acting pool, but the symposium can only accommodate a maximum of four actors per script.

Submitted scripts should bear only the title of the play and NOT the name and address of the author. To ensure blind review, include a separate cover page document with the title of the play, name of the author, address, phone number, email, and university/college, theatre, or state affiliation.

Playwrights may submit only one (1) 10-minute play script to the conference. Playwrights who submit multiple plays will not be considered. Plays that have been produced or have received readings or workshops prior to the submission date are not eligible for the Symposium. Please note that playwrights may also submit one (1) full-length or one-act play to the Plays-in-Progress initiative under a separate CFP.

If you are also interested in (or know someone else who is interested in) acting or directing, or serving as a dramaturg, scenographer or stage manager, please apply (or have them apply) under separate cover. There is a separate CFP for those roles.

No individual may submit to more than two symposia. This limit is put in place to avoid scheduling conflicts and to provide more individuals the opportunity to present. Please keep in mind, all the activities tied to playwriting and play development are part of a single symposia: Playwriting.

Submit plays and cover pages by email attachment in PDF format to Eric Thibodeaux-Thompson, Playwriting Symposium Co-Chair (ethib1@uis.edu). Please direct any questions to Eric.

Acceptances will be acknowledged by December 2018 or earlier.

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