Monday, May 22, 2017

Announcing the 2017 NJ Young Playwrights Festival plays

We are pleased to announce the plays and playwrights whose work will be presented at the 2017 New Jersey Young Playwrights Festival on June 26 & 27:

High School (grades 10-12)
Hot Dogs and Feminism by Jasmine Sharma, Bergen County Academies
Learn Your ABCs by Elijah Gaines, Lindenwold HS & Jaleel Lindsey
Packing by Michael Villanueva, Middlesex County Acedemy for Performing Arts
Smile by Kianni Keys, Newark Academy
Trust No One by Gabrielle Poisson, Newark Academy

Junior HS (grades 7-9)
Chow Chow by Marra Finkelstein, Eisenhower Middle School (Wyckoff)
Dog Sitters by Lena Shmitt, Frelinghuysen Middle School (Morristown)
"My Extraordinary World" by Charlie McLace by Maya Levenstein, Green Meadow Middle School (Hackettstown)

Elementary (grades 4-6)
Girl World, Boy World by Isabella Cerciello, St. Vincent Martyr School (Madison)
Robot House by Luke Sherman, Torey J. Sabatini School (Madison)
Techno Takeover by Darren Van Pelt, Manasquan Elementary School

Read more about these plays/playwrights on the Writers Theatre blog at…/

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Junior HS & Elementary selections coming soon!

We've finally resolved the issues that prevented the announcement of the Junior HS and Elementary selections. That information will be released on Friday. Thanks for your continued patience and understanding!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Nearly there!

Hang in there, young playwrights! We're almost done confirming the last details of the Festival. Once I get final approval, I will be in touch with the playwrights whose scripts have been selected for the Junior HS and Elementary division presentations. We can also confirm the last scheduling details, too. Just a few days more. Thanks for your patience!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Junior High School finalists notified

Junior HS finalists (grades 7-9) have been notified via the email address provided with the script submission in January. Please note that if you submitted a script as a classroom project that the notice may have been sent to your teacher. Finalists will have until April 6 @ 11:59 PM to make any revisions to their script and re-submit it for final consideration by our selection panel.

Elementary finalists will be notified by the end of next week.

Our selection panel for Junior HS and Elementary plays will meet at the end of April and we will notify the playwrights whose plays will be presented at the festival by April 30th. Thank you!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Selecting finalists

UPDATED March 23rd -

We have now begun to prepare to move the Junior HS division of the NJYPF into the final round. Playwrights whose scripts have advanced to this level will be notified by email late tonight. Elementary playwrights will be notified late next week. We should have all of the festival scripts selected by the end of April and will make a formal announcement of the plays to be produced at that time. In the meantime, we will keep reading and keep you posted.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Update on NJYPF & Presenting the 31st annual Madison YPF

Festival judging has moved into the second round for each division. We expect to notify high school finalists this week, as well. In the meantime, we are turning our attention to our local playwrights with the 31st annual Madison Young Playwrights Festival. Actors from Writers Theatre of NJ will perform the following work at our partner school in Madison later this week. Congratulations to the playwrights!

Tuesday, February 28 
1:20 pm @ St. Vincent Martyr School
  • Into the Future by Ryan Carrell
  • Girl World, Boy World by Isabella Cerciello
  • Pesky Problems by Ciara Collins
Thursday, March 2
10:00 am @ Kings Road ES
  • The German Shepards vs. The Golden Retrievers by Macey Arnold
  • Day of the Zombies by William Marinovic
  • Kaboom by Jaya Pally
  • Stan, Super-Awesome Detective by Faiz Yasin
1:00 pm @ Madison Junior School
  • The Choice by Artha Abeysinghe
  • The Failure by Yanyan Li
  • Clash of Classes by Amelia Taylor
Friday, March 3
10:00 am @ Central Avenue ES
  • The Wish by Rebecca Elsner
  • The Mystery Man by Ava Vazquez
  • Three Kids and One Broken Vase by Camryn Morales
1:30 pm @ Torey J. Sabatini ES
  • The Worst Day Ever by Anuthra Abeysinghe
  • Newsflash! by Evan Breckman
  • Paint by Numbers by Ava Schlotterbeck
  • Robot House by Luke Sherman

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Contest Judging Underway for 2017

It has been two weeks since the extended submission deadline for the 2017 New Jersey Young Playwrights Festival and I am happy to report that the first round is well underway! We had a remarkable number of submissions this year with an increase from 2016.

Our new critique forms are speeding up the process and at least 1/3 of the total submissions have already been judged in the first round. The second round of readings will take us through the end of February, but I should be able to contact the finalists in the High School division (grades 10-12) by the end of that month. Junior HS and Elementary judging will take a bit longer, but those finalists should hear from me in March. To that end, please note that we ONLY contact those playwrights whose scripts have reached the final round. Finalists will have two weeks from the date of contact to do any revisions on the script before the final selection committee meets.

This is an exciting process and I am thrilled with how well things have run so far. I look forward to updating you again soon!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Deadline Extension for the 2017 contest


We have decided to extend the submission deadline for the 2017 contest. The new deadline is:

SUNDAY, JANUARY 15 by 11:59 pm.

Plays must be submitted through the website no later than 11:59 pm on that date. There will be no further extensions, so please be sure to get your plays in before this time.

Any plays already received will go out to readers next week.


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

How to Submit a Script to the 2017 contest

(This page was amended at 3:07 pm on January 3 and reflects the correct procedure for submitting your play.)

Well, hello there! Happy New Year!

It has been a busy season of playwriting with youth at Writers Theatre since I last posted on this blog. While my posts have been infrequent in 2016, when there were published, they moved to the Writers Theatre blog on the general website, but more about that later. Right now, let's walk you through the steps to submitting a play on our new NJYPF page.

For the most part, playwrights have been sending their work without a problem; however, there is a minor glitch in the system that we want to make sure everyone is aware of before sending in the play.

1) Submissions are accepted as Word documents and PDF files ONLY. We cannot access scripts that are sent via Google Docs or Apple Pages. So, if you are working on those platforms, please be sure to download the file first, and then attach it to the submission form later. Please see the website for guidelines about how to format your script and name your file.

2) When you are ready to submit the play, go to the contest website at That will bring you to a page that looks like this:

From this page, you can choose to read through the guidelines and other information about the contest and festival using the tabs on the left hand side of the page. Or if you are ready to submit your play, click the link for Submission Form, which is noted in the picture by the red arrow.

3) This page is the Submission landing page, which again provides you with information about formatting, etc. To send your script, click the link for Submission Form on the left hand side, noted here again by the red arrow:

4) In order to correct a page error, we had to create one more Submission Form link here:
This will open a new tab in your browser with the first page of the submission form.

5) On this page read and accept the conditions of submission by noting if you are submitting the work as an Individual or a Group. (If you are a playwright sending your own work, or someone sending work for ONE playwright, you should click the button for Choice #1. If you are the teacher/mentor/parent of a group of playwrights, please choose Choice #2.)

6) Now you will be at Step 2 where you enter information about the play, playwright, etc.
Individual Submission form
PLEASE NOTE: The image above is from the Individual submission form. If you are submitting a group of plays, you will be taken to another page that looks like this:
Group Submission form
On the group submission form you will enter the title, author, grade, and Living with Disabilities category eligibility for each individual play. Use the plus button (indicated by the red arrow) to create a line for your next script.

7) The final page of the submission form will ask you to upload your file(s). Once you have done this and clicked the button to finish you will be brought to a screen that confirms your submission as received.

Due to the number of submissions that we receive, we CANNOT reply to requests to confirm whether or not a play has been received in the system. However, if you use the form and do not get a confirmation message on the screen, please let me know and I will do what I can.

8) If you are an individual playwright submitting more than one play, you will need to submit each script separately using the Individual option.

I hope this will help you through this new process. We look forward to receiving your plays!