TCR Looking for Plays for Underground Festival

6d5b5-tcrunderground2014Cedar Rapids – Every year, Theatre Cedar Rapids stages a festival of new plays of all lengths and themes. Rob Merrit’s play, The Summerland Project, started as an Underground show before getting a mainstage production and then being turned into a movie as well. So will your play find such success? Who knows? But one thing is certain, if you don’t submit, the answer is definitely no! This coming season’s festival will run February 3-19, 2017. Playwrights can submit their plays via the website.

Here’s the playwright submission information:

Who can submit?

Playwrights with a strong Iowa connection: born and raised in Iowa, currently residing in Iowa, or having lived in Iowa for at least one year.

Where will the New Play Festival take place?

In Theatre Cedar Rapids’ Grandon Studio, a 90-seat house with a small thrust stage (in its current configuration). The Underground was done with alley-style seating in the 15-16 season.

What can I submit?

  • Previously unproduced and unpublished plays, musicals, operas, children’s theatre; 10-minute, one-act and full-length scripts (plays that have received previous staged readings will be considered).
  • Scripts that can be best performed in our space and with 10 or fewer actors will be given priority in selection.
    • Anyone not familiar with the Grandon Studio can set up a time to tour the space with the Festival Coordinators, Emma Drtina or Erica Jo Hoye ( or, we encourage playwrights to become familiar with our space).
  • Scripts will be read ‘blind’.
  • No film or television scripts, please.
  • We recommend scripts be no longer than 125 pages.

How can I submit?

Directions for submission of the script document will follow the submission form, available here.

Technical information:

Our space is small, and best-suited to small-scale productions. To that end, no:

  • Spot lights
  • Moving lights
  • Microphones
  • Flown or dead-hung scenery
  • Labor available for construction of scenery
  • Open flame (no cigarettes)

The following furniture will be provided – scripts that require furniture beyond what is provided may not be realized in the way the playwright intended:

  • 1 loveseat couch
  • 4 chairs
  • 1 table
  • 1 bench
  • 2-4 acting boxes of varying size
  • Musicals will be provided a keyboard, if needed


  • Director will be assigned from the pool of director applicants.
  • At this time, no royalties will be paid to playwrights
  • Standard play formatting is not necessary, but authors should follow these basic guidelines:
    • Font: Times New Roman, Courier, or Arial
    • Margins should be 1-1.25 inches all around
    • Stage directions should be italicized
    • Character names should be centered or left-justified and capitalized
    • Page numbers and the play’s title (not the author’s name) should appear in the header on every page
  • Due to the high volume of submissions, feedback cannot be provided for scripts that are not selected
  • All festival communication will be via email

Lots more information is available on their website.


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