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Deadline Extended for Young Playwrights Festival Inaugurated in Honor of Stephen H. Grant

Deadline Extended for Young Playwrights Festival Inaugurated in Honor of Stephen H. Grant

Budding writers in Rockland high schools are being invited to compose and submit 10-minute plays to a competition co-sponsored by two professional theatres, Penguin Rep Theatre and Phoenix Theatre Ensemble, this spring in the newly launched .

Five plays will be selected from all student submissions for a public reading by professional actors before a live audience at Penguin Rep’s playhouse in Stony Point in May in this new competition named in honor of the late Stephen H. Grant, a pillar of the North Rockland community and a long-time member of Board of Trustees of Penguin Rep.

The submitted student one-act plays on any topic will be reviewed by a team of professional theater personnel, including actors and directors.  Detailed instructions and a sample script are provided to all local high schools.

All entrants will receive certificates of recognition for their submissions and the authors of the winning scripts will receive a monetary prize.  The guidelines are provided here at the end.

Prior to the readings, award-winning playwright, Rockland Community College educator, and Penguin literary manager, Angelo Parra, will be available via Zoom to offer feedback on the plays to finalists.  His book, Playwriting for Dummies, will be made available for participating schools.

For over 40 years, Penguin Rep (Joe Brancato, Artistic Director; Andrew M. Horn, Executive Director) has been home to dynamic original productions and select revivals presenting the work of award-winning playwrights and featuring professional actors, including Tony, Emmy, and Oscar award winners.

Founded in 2004, Phoenix Theatre Ensemble (Craig Smith, Managing Director; Elise Stone, Artistic Director) is an award-winning not-for-profit organization committed to the presentation of the great stories of the classical canon, and new adaptations of language-rich texts in innovative stagings that speak to and serve contemporary audiences.

The high school playwriting guidelines include:

  • Plays must be typed (not handwritten) and should be in standard play format (a sample is provided).  The script should include setting, characters, dialog, and stage directions.
  • Plays must be original and may be up to 10 pages in length (approximately 10 minutes in duration).
  • Student playwrights must be in grades 9-12 during the 2022-2023 school year and attending any of Rockland County’s public or private high schools or home school.
  • Plays may be written by individuals, pairs, or small groups of students.
  • Plays should feature between 1 and 4 characters.
  • An attached cover page must list the writer’s name, home address, email, phone number, high school, and grade, play title, a play topic, and list of characters’ names with pertinent descriptions (i.e., age, gender, role/occupation).
  • Entries must be submitted by April 21, 2023, via email attachment ( or by mail to Penguin Rep Theatre, P. O. Box 91, Stony Point, NY 10980.
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