Our 2021 Kaplan Playwright competition is now accepting submissions!
For over 10 years, Eventide Theatre Company showcases an array of Cape Cod creative voices, including our annual New Playwrights, New Plays: the Jeremiah Kaplan Playwriting Competition and Performance.
The New Playwrights, New Plays Competition encourages and stimulates the writing and production of new full-length plays by Cape and Island writers. The Competition is sponsored by Eventide Theatre Company, a Cape Cod non-profit organization devoted to producing stimulating theatre for the purpose of inspiring thought and debate and showcasing the work of local artists.
The 2007 winner ~ Meridian Summer by Candace Perry
The 2008 winner ~ Sequel by David Kucher
The 2009 winner ~ Eucatastrophe by Andy Reynolds
The 2010 winner ~ This Verse Business by A.M. Dolan
The 2011 winner ~ To Be in the Game by Tom Gotsill
The 2013 winner ~ A Talented Woman by James Dalglish and Lynda Sturner
The 2014 winner ~ Fifteen Men in a Smoke Filled Room by Colin Crowley
The 2015 winner ~ The Final Say by Meryl Cohn
The 2016 winner ~ Bruno by Raymond van Over
The 2017 winner ~ Colonel of Reason by Tom Gotsill
The 2018 winner ~ Office Noise by Bob Dutton
The 2020 winner ~ Touched By War by James Marlow
We accept full-length play manuscripts (musicals may be considered IF a recording of the songs is also provided) for consideration as a qualified submission. Shorter length works may be submitted for consideration in the Festival of New Plays. Plays that have been previously produced will not be considered for this competition. Festival submissions can be submitted here: (Link for festival submissions)
Qualified Submissions MUST have a direct connection to Cape Cod & the Islands. An example of a direct connection may include:
- A play written by an author with a local connection (resident, previous resident, summer resident, artist in residence, performer, etc.)
- A play with a Cape Cod setting
- A play with major characters that have a Nantucket background.
- A play where an occurrence on Martha’s Vineyard impacts the narrative.
These rules ARE subjective and are subject to the interpretation of the Artistic Committee. Qualified submissions will advance to the development stage of the competition.
Submissions that do not meet the qualification standards of the Artistic committee will receive a letter indicating that they have not qualified and the reasons why the submission was deferred.
Qualified submissions will be invited to participate in the mentorship program. A $50 administrative fee will apply to all submissions that choose to participate. This fee is waived for Eventide Theatre Company members in good standing. Scholarship opportunities are available and are based on need.
Qualified Submissions will be paired with a professional Mentor to assist in the development of the play prior to the adjudication period. The mentor will assist in the continued development of the script through table reads and peer review until the date of adjudication submission.
Mentor and Mentee will work on script revisions and will schedule table reads with local theaters and venues, using actors selected by the Mentor/Mentee team. This, along with one-on-one guidance will continue at the mentors discretion.
Mentees are not required to change their submission but are strongly advised to follow the guidance of their mentor. If a mentee is dissatisfied with their work with their mentor, the mentee may appeal to the Artistic committee in writing to request their mentor be changed. If a mentor is dissatisfied with the engagement of a mentee, they have the authority to disqualify the submission or to simply pass the submission on for adjudication. The mentee has the right to appeal this decision in writing to the Artistic Committee as well. Refusal to alter text is not exclusively a reason for disqualification.
Eventide Theatre Company engages three theatrical professionals to read the final submission. The identities of these individuals are known to the Competition Coordinator and the Executive Director and they are not made known to the members of the Artistic Committee. These individuals will read all submissions and will meet to determine the winner of the competition.
The playwright chosen as having submitted the best script will receive a $1,000.00 cash prize and a lightly staged production. The play may be considered to return in an encore production the following year as a featured previous winner at the discretion of the Artistic Committee.
- Submissions Open – 4/1
- Submissions Close – 5/31
- Jury Process/Play reading – 6/1 to 6/30
- Mentors/Critics Assigned – 7/1
- Review/Critique Process – 7/1 to 9/15
- Final Submissions sent to Judges – 9/15
- Judges Results due – 9/30
- Winner(s) & Festival Schedule Announced – 10/15
- Festival – Nov 12, 13, and 14
Major funding for this program was provided by a grant from the Kaplan Fund of The Cape Cod Foundation. Additional funding was provided by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.