SUBMISSIONS for OOF! On One Foot EXTENDED to June 6, 2024

A global contest for ten-minute plays produced by plays2gather
With support from the Jewish Plays Project

We are proud to announce a new ten-minute play festival seeking plays that highlight healing and repair.  

The “OOF! On One Foot Contest” is part of the Jewish Plays Project and the Berkshire Theater Group’s first ever Festival of New Jewish Theater, to be held August 15-17, 2024 at the Colonial Theater in Pittsfield, MA. 

Four selected 10-minute plays will receive cash prizes, and their plays will be produced by the JPP in the Festival alongside 2 established JPP writers. 

The Contest is inspired by Hillel the Sage’s teaching, given when he was asked if he could summarize the whole of the Torah while standing on one foot: “That which is hateful to you, do not do unto your fellow. That is the whole Torah; the rest is commentary. Now, go and learn.”

Eligible plays:

  • must contain significant Jewish themes, characters, content, or points of view.
  • must contain a moment of healing between characters of different backgrounds.
  • will have 6 or fewer actors

Plays submitted can be on any topic, with any characters, but readers will be evaluating the ten minute plays in relation to these teachings, and the ways they inspire healing in the world.  

JPP Contest Dramaturg Heather Helinsky will be accepting submissions of ten minute plays that qualify with the prompt, and will lead a Selection Committee of plays2gather community members and JPP professional readers. Please note that while we accept plays in many formats, we prefer the Dramatists Guild Standard Format. Please direct all questions for contest to literary@jewishplaysproject.org

FULL CONTEST ELIGIBILITY

Eligible plays:

  • must contain significant Jewish themes, characters, content, or points of view.
  • must contain a moment of healing between characters of different backgrounds.
  • will have a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 6 actors
  • You can apply with more than one ten minute play for this contest, as long as the writer feels all submissions connect with the prompt
  • We do not accept musicals at this time.
  • do not need to be created for this Contest, but should not have already been published.  

Plays submitted can be on any topic, with any characters, but readers will be evaluating the ten minute plays in relation to these teachings, and the ways they inspire healing in the world. 

CHECKLIST

  • Plays must be in a single PDF document.
  • Plays must include a title page without the author’s identifying information.
  • Plays must include a character breakdown, which includes a doubling scheme for six actors if the play has more than six characters.
  • We acknowledge that with the variety of theatrical styles and artistic forms, a ten minute play may be more or less than 10 pages. However, the running time for each play should not exceed 10 minutes. 
  • Please note that while we accept plays in many formats, we prefer the Dramatists Guild Standard Format.

TIMELINE

  • Ten minute plays will be received on a rolling basis beginning May 1.
  • Jewish Plays Project will accept plays through June 6. 2024, but may close the window for submissions once 500 ten-minute plays have been received.
  • We reserve the right to extend or shorten the deadline or revise the number of plays accepted and will communicate this prior to the deadline for submissions. 

DEVELOPMENT PROCESS

Unlike the Jewish Plays Contest, the ten minute play will not receive a formal development process. Staff at Jewish Plays Project may provide feedback, but the writer has the right to leave their play unchanged. However, during the rehearsal process in the Berkshire Theatre Group, the writer may be contacted if the running time exceeds ten minutes. The Playwright has the right to make edits during the festival if they desire.

VALUES

The JPP strives to be a joyous, creative, collaborative, democratic, and safe organization. See this link for some of the ways that we are working to make the theater – and by extension the world – a graceful place to live.

SUBMISSIONS ARE OPEN TO ARTISTS OF ALL BACKGROUNDS, DENOMINATIONS, FAITHS, CREEDS, RELIGIONS, and other IDEALS. We believe that Jewish identity and culture are specific manifestations of universal human cravings for spiritual, ethical, moral and worldly joy. “Matrilineal descent” is neither important nor necessary.

The key question that every JPP selection process centers around is “Is a Jewish question at the heart of this play”? By this, we mean we are seeking a narrative that engages deeply with Jewish ideas and meaning in a contemporary, 21st-Century way. We are seeking the places where strengthening the Jewish content of the play makes the story stronger.  

The OOF Contest is a new endeavor for the JPP and plays2gather, but you may learn more about our values and preferences here:

https://jewishplaysproject.org/guide

EVALUATION

  • Beginning in May 2024, a committee of experienced Jewish Plays Project readers will evaluate the first round. No more than 50% of the plays submitted will be chosen to advance to the next round. Playwrights not selected to advance will be notified promptly.
  • In additional selection rounds, teams of readers from JPP and plays2gather will evaluate plays, working towards a final round of 25-40 plays. All readers will meet to select the final four plays by August 1, 2024. 
  • All writers who apply will receive a notification letter prior to the presentation in mid-August. Expect to hear by August 5th, 2024 at the latest. 

AWARDS AND RIGHTS

The OOF Contest will provide the following to selected playwrights:

  • A high-quality workshop production of the play featuring: directing by BTG and JPP staff artists; excellent Equity actors from NYC, Boston and the Berkshires; minimal but tasteful design elements.  
  • A Finalist Award of $500
  • Lodging at the Berkshire Theatre Group on the evening of the presentations on  August 16 
  • Publicity and recognition as a Contest Winner, alongside all Finalists and 2 prominent and established writers. 

 

Selection in the Contest does not confer any ownership rights or future financial participation to the JPP, plays2gather or BTG, but we will ask that all selected playwrights use their best efforts to include the following in any subsequent production or publication of the play:

 

“[SELECTED PLAY] was produced and developed by the Jewish Plays Project and plays2gather as part of the 2024 Festival of New Jewish Plays at the Berkshire Theatre Group”. 

 

Other rights, responsibilities and conditions may be included in the Contest Acceptance form. 

ABOUT THE ORGANIZATIONS

  • The Jewish Plays Project, founded in 2011, identifies, develops, and advocates for new works of theater via one-of-a-kind explorations of contemporary Jewish identity between audiences, artists, and patrons. The JPP’s innovative and competitive development process engages Jewish communities in the vetting, selecting, and championing of new voices and secures mainstream production opportunities for the best new plays.

     

    The JPP has featured some of the best artists working in New York, including writers David Hein and Irene Sankoff (Come from Away), Robert Askins (Hand to God), and Lauren Yee (Cambodian Rock Band); directors Marc Bruni (Beautiful), Daniella Topol (Artistic Director, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre), and Tamilla Woodard (WP Theater, 3LD); and actors Andrew Polk (The Band’s Visit), Ronald Guttman (Mad Men, Homeland), Kirrilee Berger (Amazon’s Just Add Magic), and Obie and Drama Desk nominee Marcia Jean Kurtz.

 

  • plays2gather incubates plays at homes, stages and unusual places that are inspired by a vision of both ancient and inclusive Jewish culture.
  • Berkshire Theatre Group’s mission is to support wide-ranging artistic exploration and acclaimed performances in theatre, dance, music and entertainment. Berkshire Theatre Group’s celebrated four stages reflect the history of the American theatre; they represent a priceless cultural resource for the community. Our vision is to be a center for creative work that enriches, educates, invigorates, transforms, and strengthens our community for the better.
     

    Berkshire Theatre Group was created in 2010 by the merger of two of Berkshire County’s oldest cultural organizations, Berkshire Theatre Festival founded in 1928 in Stockbridge and The Colonial Theatre built in 1903 in Pittsfield. One of the largest and most exciting arts organizations in the area, BTG oversees the development, production and presentation of theatre, music and the performing arts on multiple indoor and outdoor stages and spaces on 8 acres.