The deadline to submit new full-length plays for PlayFest presented by Harriett's Charitable Trust (November 2016) has passed. Please check back in January 2017 for next season’s submission guidelines.

PlayFest presented by Harriett's Charitable Trust represents one of the strongest commitments to new plays in the nation. Over the years, the festival has helped develop over 125 new works – many of which have received subsequent productions in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Dallas, and Washington D.C.

PlayFest is unique among New Play Festivals in two ways:

PlayFest nurtures the playwright during the creative process. Writers are afforded the opportunity to work with top directors and actors in Orlando and beyond to help them in their process from page to stage.

PlayFest partners with theater companies across the nation, as well as new play development organizations, to provide audiences with the opportunity to see the work of many groups.

Due to the success of PlayFest, Central Florida is now identified as a place where exceptional new works are making their debut. Join us in discovering the next great American playwright!

November 3 - 6, 2016

This season we’re dedicating PlayFest presented by Harriett’s Charitable Trust to 6 new plays plus a special reading of The Laramie Project. All selected plays explore issues surrounding the Pulse tragedy that occurred in Orlando in the early morning of June 12, 2016.  In selecting plays for the weekend, we’re concentrating on plays that explore the following issues:

  • LGBTQ struggles and responses to violence and hate
  • Discrimination against Hispanics/Latinos and efforts for acceptance and inclusion
  • Terrorism acts
  • Mental health and gun violence
  • Individual and community responses to mass violence

Individual Reading Tickets: $10

  • Click here to book individual tickets for PlayFest Readings. General Admission Seating.

Save now with a PlayFest Package!

  • PlayFest VIP – $100 per individual
    Want to make sure you’ve got the best seat in the house?  We’re offering the opportunity to upgrade your pass to PlayFest VIP to ensure a reserved seat for all 6 new plays + The Laramie Project.  Become a PlayFest VIP to reserve your seat up front in one of the first four rows of the Margeson Theater.
  • Purchase all 7 Readings with a PlayFest Pass! – $49 (Value: $70)
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Make a commitment to new plays! Call the Box Office at 407-447-1700 ext. 1 for more information.


About PlayFest presented by Harriett’s Charitable Trust

PlayFest offers you the rare opportunity to participate in the development of new plays. Converse with playwrights, directors, and actors while absorbing groundbreaking new works. This four-day event tears down the barrier between artist and audience, putting YOU at the heart of the process.

Your input is vital to the extended life of new plays. Many audience favorites from PlayFest have been developed into full productions in Orlando Shakespeare Theater’s Signature Series!

About the Keynote Event: After Orlando and Global Theatre Initiatives

Playwright Caridad Svich will give a keynote address on Saturday, November 5 at 8:00 p.m. called “Creating After Orlando and Global Theatre Initiatives.” Ms. Svich has instigated six theatre actions addressing social issues that have gone global. In response to the Pulse Tragedy, Missing Bolts Productions and NoPassport Theatre Alliance & Press (of which Ms. Svich is the founder) created After Orlando, a collection of over sixty short three-minute plays exploring the issues surrounding the tragedy.

Ms. Svich’s keynote will be followed by readings of an encore performance of a number of the plays from After Orlando, including several written by members of the Orlando theatrical community. The After Orlando reading is scheduled to begin at 8:30 p.m.

After Orlando is presented in partnership with Missing Bolts Productions (Blair Baker & Zac Kline, artistic directors) and NoPassport Theatre Alliance & Press (Caridad Svich, founder)

About Moises Kaufman and The Laramie Project

Finally, in a very special event, the following weekend on Saturday, November 12 at 7 p.m. director and playwright Moises Kaufman will discuss The Tectonic Theatre Project’s creation of The Laramie Project, followed by a special reading of the play

Moises Kaufman, along with the Tectonic Theater Project, created “The Laramie Project” a play which explores the issues surrounding the death of Matthew Shepard, a young gay man who was murdered in Laramie, Wyoming, in 1999.  This was the first use of the “Angel Action Wings” in a counter-protest to hate groups who came to Laramie.  

Orlando Shakespeare Theater spearheaded Angel Action Wings in Orlando which marched at the funeral of Drew Leinonen on June 19, 2016. All funds from The Laramie Project will be donated to the care and cleaning of the Action Angels Wing for Orlando project.

After Orlando: an International Theatre Action

Previous to our reading of selections of After Orlando on Nov 5th, Orlando audiences will have another opportunity to hear different selections of the three minute plays (with some overlap). Kangagirl Productions (Margaret Nolan, artistic director) in partnership with Missing Bolts Productions (Blair Baker & Zac Kline, artistic directors) and NoPassport Theatre Alliance & Press (Caridad Svich, founder) will present an evening of selected short plays written in response to the shooting at Pulse Nightclub for the After Orlandoan International Theatre Action. 

The evening’s selection was curated from plays from over 70 playwrights from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Africa and will include Neil LaBute, Caridad Svich, Erik Ehn, Ian Rowlands, Amina Henry and special contributions from Orlando-based writers:  David Lee, Aradhana Tiwari, Scottie Campbell, Viet-Dung Nguyen, Dennis Giancino, Leesa Halstead and Paul Castaneda, Darryl Pickett. David McElroy, and Tyler Darling.  The net proceeds from the evening will benefit the Pulse of Orlando fund.

The plays will be presented on Monday October 17th at 7:30 p.m. in the Mandell Theater at the John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center.  Tickets are $25.  

Click here for more information and tickets. All funds from After Orlando will be donated to onepulsefoundation.org.

*play titles and dates subject to change.

Readings

The Day Before Yesterday

By: Israel Horovitz

Thursday, November 3 at 7:30 p.m.

Based around the terrorist attack on the Bataclan concert hall in Paris, The Day Before Yesterday chronicles the lives of three couples over the course of 72 hours, from before the attack when they were strangers living in Paris, Miami, and Brooklyn, to the next morning when they collectively take refuge at a nearby apartment.

Native Gardens

By: Karen Zacarías

Friday, November 4 at 7:30 p.m.

A young Latino couple moves into a Washington, DC neighborhood next door to a middle-aged Caucasian couple and both battle for control of the property line in their backyard, all the while attempting to balance the expectations and requirements of their own “American dream.”

Motherland

By: Allison Gregory

Saturday, November 5 at 4:30 p.m.

Standing at the intersection of what’s strictly legal and what can turn a profit, Mother seeks to carve out a life for herself and her children. When the law, love, and opportunity show up all at once, her courage is put to the test.

Caridad Svich | After Orlando

By: multiple playwrights

Saturday, November 5 at 8:00 p.m.

Playwright Caridad Svich has instigated six theater actions addressing social issues that have gone global. In response to Pulse, Missing Bolts Productions and NoPassport Theatre Alliance & Press (of which Svich is the founder) created After Orlando, a collection of over sixty three-minute plays exploring the issues surrounding the tragedy. Svich’s keynote will be followed by readings of a number of the plays from After Orlando, including several written by members of the Orlando theatrical community. All funds from the After Orlando reading will be donated to the “OneOrlando Fund” to assist the victims and families of the Pulse tragedy.

Playwrights Panel: “Answering the Call to Community Issues”

Sunday, November 6 at 12:00 p.m.

Minneapolis/St. Paul

By: Lee Blessing

Sunday, November 6 at 1:00 p.m.

A celebrated crime novelist leads two different lives, one as Randall, the middle-aged husband and father, and the other as Mandy, the newly-wedded wife and stepmother. In a play that is both poignant and bitingly funny, Mandy/Randall struggles with the complexities and repercussions of an identity too vast to fit within binaries.

Ever After

By: John Biguenet

Sunday, November 6 at 3:15 p.m.

Various characters represented by four actors share the process and feelings that individuals and families go through as they attempt to make sense of everything following a tragedy.

Special Event: The Laramie Project Discussion and Reading

By: Moisés Kaufman

Saturday 12 at 7:00 p.m.

In a special PlayFest event taking place the following weekend on Saturday, November 12 at 7 p.m., award-winning director and playwright Moisés Kaufman will discuss The Tectonic Theatre Project’s creation of The Laramie Project, followed by a reading of the play. All funds from The Laramie Project reading will be donated to “Angel Action Wings for Orlando.” Casting and direction for The Laramie Project is presented in cooperation with Mad Cow Theatre, which performed the full production in 2002.