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We are accepting scripts for the 2nd Annual “NewWorks@theWorks” Competition.   A panel of local directors, actors, and designers will review all submitted scripts and select six to receive staged readings during the 2014-15 season.  After the six readings have been presented, Playhouse on the Square will select two that will receive full productions during the 2015-16 season.  These two new works will receive world premieres at Playhouse’s third performance space, TheatreWorks.

Along with these fully mounted productions, the two winning works will each be awarded a prize of $500.  The playwright(s) of each play will also be flown to Memphis to take part in the rehearsals and development of the new work.

There is a $15 entry fee for the competition, which must be paid along with the submitted script. Playwrights who submitted in the first year of the competition need only pay a $10 entry fee. Only check and money order will be accepted.  Any script submitted without the entry fee will not be considered.

The following outlines the guidelines and rules for the 2014-15 competition:

1.  The submission must be written in the English Language.

2.  The submission must be an original, full-length play or musical that is unpublished.

3.  The submission must begin with a title page that includes the work’s name and the playwright’s name, address, telephone number, and email.  There should also include a character list and scene breakdown if applicable.  NOTE* If submitting a musical please include a score and demo.

4.  Submissions that have been previously produced or published will not be accepted.  A play that is scheduled for a professional production at the time of submission will also not be accepted.

5.   The manuscript must be easy to read.  It must be typed in no less that 12-point type and page numbered.

6.  The cast for the play or musical must be limited to no more than 10.

7.  The script may have more than one author.  Also, the playwright(s) may include a brief biography, but it is not necessary.

8.  Each playwright is limited to one submission per year.  There will be no revisions accepted once a script has been submitted.  Revised plays that have been previously submitted to the competition may be submitted again.

9.  There will be no written or oral critique given on scripts submitted. We will notify the playwrights whose plays have been selected for readings.  The six plays selected for readings will be announced on our website.

10.  Please send the manuscript to Playhouse on the Square, New Works Competition, 66 S. Cooper, Memphis, TN 38104

11.  In order to qualify for the 2014-2015 competition, the script must be submitted no earlier than January 1, 2014 and must be post marked no later than May 30, 2014.

12.  Please include a self-addressed, stamped postcard for receipt of the manuscript to be acknowledged. Also include a self-addressed, stamped envelope for the play to be returned, should it not be selected for the competition.  Any play without a self-addressed, stamped envelope will be recycled if not selected for the competition.

13.  Do not send the only copy of a manuscript.  All scripts will be handled with care, but Playhouse on the Square will not be responsible for any loss or damage to your manuscript.

For questions, contact Jordan Nichols, Director of New Works, at

Looking for other ways to get involved with NewWorks@TheWorks? Click here!


The six finalists for the 2013 NewWorks@TheWorks Playwriting Competition have been selected! The following plays will receive staged readings at Playhouse on the Square:

Memory Grove by Dean Farell Bruggeman     

Reading Date: October 5, 1:00 PM

Four married couples face destructive, life-altering obstacles.  Is love fatally misplaced?   “Til death do us part” is more an omen than a vow.

Cast: Lorraine Cotten, Michael Detroit, Renée Kemper, Lisa Lynch, John Moore, Joshua Quinn, Kevin Stark, and Jacob Wingfield directed by Jordan Nichols


In Her Awkward Fist by Wayne Paul Mattingly     

Reading Date: October 6, 7:00

On the day of her father’s burial, 14-year-old Brigette meets Marvin, a middle-aged man.  Friendship quickly evolves into intimacy.   Is it love or lust?

Cast: Stephen Huff, Ann Marie Hall, Carly Crawford, Erin Shelton, and Cary Vaughn directed by Matt Crewse


The Swan Queen & The Radical Faerie by Frank Canino

Reading Date: October 12, 1:00 PM

A bitter, retired ballerina and her self-destructive stepson battle to find common ground.  Ironically, they will become the guide and model for the other’s journey into death.

Cast: Sarla Nichols, Jacob Rickert, Tony Isbell, Jonathan Christian, and Erin Shelton directed by Jordan Nichols


We Live Here by Harold Ellis Clark     

Reading Date:  December 1, 7:00 PM

A Black couple from New Orleans’ 9th ward wins a house in a white neighborhood and discovers their “dream come true” is too good to be true.


Mountain View by Teri Feigelson    

Reading Date: December 2, 7:00 PM

Set deep in the mountains of Appalachia, a teenage girl tells the story of her kinfolk and the shadows lurking in the woods around her.


Sorrow’s End by Nathaniel Lachenmeyer   

Reading Date: December 3, 7:00 PM

A family hires a cult deprogrammer to save their son.  What seems to be a casebook intervention turns into a psychological thriller.


Admission for staged readings is $10. To purchase, call 901-726-4656 or click here.

The NewWorks@TheWorks Competition is sponsored by Sue and Frank Guarino and Baker Gross.

For questions about NewWorks@TheWorks, contact Jordan Nichols at