The-Write-Stuff, a new playwriting competition for youth
Infinithéâtre Artistic Director Zach Fraser and playwright Oren Safdie, Head of New Play Development, are thrilled to announce the creation of The-Write-Stuff playwriting competition for youth, to be awarded annually to the best new play by an emerging writer aged 12-18. The winner will receive $500; submissions open April 1, 2021.
In this latest development initiative, along the lines of Write-on-Q, The Pipeline, and the Big Bang Artists' Laboratory, Infinithéâtre will choose five to eight of the best plays submitted from the Québec-wide competition. Short-listed playwrights are provided mentoring and direction from industry professionals to hone their skills, talent, and confidence, and to help prepare their work for public readings. Playwrights will see their vision come to life in a professional staged reading featuring some of Montréal’s best actors from theatre, film, and television.
“It is my goal to develop a powerhouse of Québec English playwrights second to none,” says Safdie, a highly accomplished stage, television, and film writer, artistic director, and teacher. He recalls the impact this kind of work had on him: “The-Write-Stuff came out of my own experiences as a student of playwriting. It was one thing to hear my words read out loud by fellow students in the classroom, but once I saw my script read up on stage by professional actors before a live audience, I was hooked and knew I wanted to become a playwright. This program is a way of reaching out and getting young students to try their hand at playwriting, something they may never have considered. It’s also a way for Infinithéâtre to make a connection with tomorrow’s artists, and let them know that they have a home for their work in Montréal without having to go elsewhere. If we don’t support them today, we won’t have a generation of artists tomorrow.”
The annual competition will bring attention to Montréal as an important promoter of new theatrical works, give young people a chance to have their unique voices heard in a professional setting, and offer audiences a glimpse into these young hearts and minds—as well as the thrill of seeing potential award-winning playwrights present their first professional productions.
The-Write-Stuff will play a critical role in training and supporting upcoming theatremakers in Québec. This competition is unique in Canada. While there may be other young playwright contests, The-Write-Stuff differs from the rest in that the company fully produces a staged reading of the selected plays and provides the playwrights a professional experience from beginning to end. They are never considered ‘students’; they are ‘the playwrights’.
The deadline for submissions to Infinithéâtre’s The-Write-Stuff new playwriting competition for youth is June 15. Short, original works can be plays, monologues, or musicals on any subject. Staged readings will take place in December 2021.
For contest rules and requirements : TheWriteStuff_Info.pdf