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Monday, September 20, 2021

Shubert Fendrich Memorial Playwriting Contest 2021

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Deadline: December 31, 2021

To encourage the development of quality theatrical materials for the educational, community and children’s theatre markets, Pioneer Drama Service is proud to sponsor the annual Shubert Fendrich Memorial Playwriting Contest.

This is an ongoing contest, with a winner selected by June 1 each year from all eligible submissions received the previous year.  All eligible plays accepted for publication will be considered contest finalists, from which the winner will be selected.  The contest winner will receive a $1,000 royalty advance in addition to publication.

Contest entries must meet all general guidelines and submission requirements.

Individuals currently published by Pioneer Drama Service are not eligible for this contest.  Pioneer Drama Service employees and their families are also excluded.

We accept unsolicited manuscripts that meet the parameters defined in these guidelines. However, we prefer for you to send us a query letter if you are not submitting through one of our playwriting contests. You can also start the submission process by contacting us here.
  • We will only consider manuscripts with a running time between 20 and 90 minutes.
  • Submissions must be family friendly in both subject and language. NO cursing. NO explicitly adult content.
  • We prefer casts that are either balanced or favoring females. The more gender neutral roles, the better.
  • We favor plays and musicals with ensemble casts, where more than just a few have a chance to shine.
  • Plays with elaborate set, costume or technical requirements are not appealing because of the limited resources of many of our customers. Pictures, sketches or descriptions of your vision are always helpful.
  • We recommend your submissions have had at least one production or reading, hopefully staged. We feel this fundamental field test is necessary before a play can be considered for publication since plays are created for the purpose of performance.
  • Manuscripts must be computer-printed in dark ink. We do not require specific formatting. However, your efforts to ensure your script is free of misspellings and typos will help the submissions editor.
  • We hope that Pioneer Drama is your first choice as a publisher, and we encourage you to submit to us exclusively. However, we do accept simultaneous submissions with the understanding that you will accept the first contract you’re offered and not use the situation to seek multiple offers from which to choose. If you receive another offer, please notify us immediately so we may rescind your submission.

NOTE: If you are not already published by Pioneer Drama Service and your submission meets all other requirements including having had at least one production or staged reading, your play will automatically be entered in the Shubert Fendrich Memorial Playwriting Contest. If you are a faculty member at an accredited K-12 public or private school in the US or Canada, you may also qualify for our A+ Playwriting Contest for Teachers.

Check out our list of past contest winners for examples of desirable submissions.
Submission Requirements

Please be patient. Queries will be answered within approximately one week. Submissions may take up to three months or longer.

The following information must accompany your submission or query:
  • 100-200 word synopsis.
  • Cast list that indicates the number of female roles, the number of male roles and the number of roles that can be performed by either gender. We do not accept one-person shows.
  • Running time.
  • CD and/or score for musicals. We appreciate the opportunity to hear the music, if possible.
  • Set design(s). Please feel free to provide diagrams and/or pictures.
  • Proof of production or staged reading (i.e., review, program, etc.) A DVD of your performance is ideal, though not required.
  • Age of intended audience.
  • A self-addressed envelope of sufficient size with appropriate postage for the return of your materials. We will NOT return manuscripts or accompanying material if this is not included.
  • Cover letter and/or resume.
Please send your query or manuscript and accompanying information to:

Pioneer Drama Service, Inc.
Attn: Submissions Editor
PO Box 4267
Englewood, CO 80155-4267

You may also email us your .txt, .doc or .pdf files after you contact us here.

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