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Friday, May 24, 2024

Jewish Play Writing Contest seeks full-length plays


Deadline: June 14, 2024


AN IMPORTANT NOTE: SUBMISSIONS ARE OPEN TO ARTISTS OF ALL BACKGROUNDS, DENOMINATIONS, FAITHS, CREEDS, RELIGIONS, and other IDEALS. We believe that Jewish identity and culture are specific manifestations of universal human cravings for spiritual, ethical, moral and worldly joy. “Matrilineal descent” is neither important nor necessary.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE: The Jewish Plays Project now accepts scripts for new Jewish plays and musicals on an open, rolling basis. However, our reading period is April-October. To guarantee we consider your play for the most current review cycle, please submit by June 14, 2024. Plays submitted after this date will be held for the next cycle.

*** NB: As of May 1, 2024, we are reading for the 14th Annual Jewish Playwriting Contest. ***

SUBMISSION PROCESS: Fill out the Submission Form and attach a play to the form as a PDF. You must submit your play with your name and other identifying information removed (we review all plays blind). We do not charge a fee to submit (cause we kinda think submission fees are “yucky”. That’s a technical term).


The following must be true of a submitted play or musical:

It contains significant Jewish themes, characters, content, or points of view.
It is in English, or primarily in English—we love plays that play with language as a theatrical tool, and plays that explore the differences in language. It just needs to be primarily accessible to an English speaking audience. (We welcome translations.)
It is full length, meaning over around 75 minutes in length. (For a guide, that usually means 60 pages or more. We DO NOT review 10 or 20 minute plays.)
It has not had a full production in the NY Metro region or a major regional theater (LORT C or above).
It has never been published in any form.

NOTE: We are most interested in submissions that embrace and depend on Jewish identity at their dramatic core, while avoiding stereotypical forms that rely on cultural or ethnic shorthands in lieu of dramatic development. This holds true whether dealing with the historical gravity of the Holocaust or employing stereotypical tropes for comic effect.


Please submit your script as a PDF document with all personally identifiable information removed (to aid in blind reading). We ask that you endeavor to follow the formatting guidelines set by the Dramatists Guild: See the guide to formats here.


The JPP does develop musicals (see our workshops of David Hein and Irene Sankoff’s Mitzvah and Deborah Yarchun’s And You Shall Be a Blessing). Submitted musicals must include links to recordings of at least 3 songs to be reviewed. Please note, we review musicals on a different timeline than our other programming.


The JPP brings all the tools of new play development to bear on the plays we select: dramaturgical consultation and research; the involvement of collaborating artists – including directors, designers and actors – at all stages as needed; private and public presentations; and industry advocacy.

What distinguishes the JPP process is what we call Jewish Dramaturgy. We base our exploration of the theatrical needs of a play around the central issue of its Jewish content and ideas, continuing to ask the question “What is the Jewish here?” When possible, we will bring prominent Jewish thought leaders (clergy, scholars, professionals and artists) into the room to join the development process, and extend the Jewish learning.

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