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Our War Monologue Competition

In conjunction with our production of Our War and as part of The National Civil War Project, Arena Stage is holding a national competition for character monologue submissions written about the American Civil War. Selections may be fictitious or based on the writer’s family history.

Up to three winners will receive a performance of their monologue at Arena Stage by members of the cast of Our War at a post-show public reading on November 6 following the 8:00 p.m. performance. Selected writers will also receive a session with American Voices New Play Institute Dramaturg Jocelyn Clarke, a listing in the Our War program and an award certificate. Video clips of the performed monologues will be posted on Arena Stage’s website and on social media.

The winners will be notified by Arena Stage in September and the selected monologues will be posted on the Arena Stage website.

Monologues should be no more than three minutes in length (on average, 600 words), and must in some way address or react to the American Civil War and how it reverberates in America today. Submissions will be read by Arena Stage staff and board, local theater artists and community partners.

This competition is now closed and we are no longer accepting submissions. Winners will be contacted in September.

FAQs

What is Our War?
Part of The National Civil War Project, Our War is a new play premiering this fall at Arena Stage. Directed by Anita Maynard-Losh, Our War is comprised of 25 monologues written by 25 of America’s finest playwrights, including winners of the Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award and Olivier Award, to explore the repercussions of the U.S. Civil War. For a list of participating playwrights, visit here.

Who can participate in the Our War Monologue Contest?
Published and amateur writers, as well as students 18 and up. The monologue may not have been previously published and must be written by one writer.

What should I write?
A storytelling monologue from the point of view of a character associated with the American Civil War, with a clear beginning, middle and end.

How long should my monologue be?
All monologues must be a maximum of three minutes (on average, 600 words).

What’s the deadline?
Entries must be received at Arena Stage by Monday, August 11, 2014.

How do I submit?
Submit your monologue to KogodCradle@ArenaStage.org.

Can I submit a video of me performing my monologue?
All submissions should be written. Judging is based on your text, rather than your delivery.

When will the winners be announced?
The winners will be selected and notified in September and the selected monologues will be posted on the Arena Stage website.

Do I need theater experience prior to this competition?
No previous theater experience is required.

Does the Our War Monologue Contest cost anything?
There is absolutely NO COST to participate in the competition.

How does judging work?
Monologues will be adjudicated by a panel made up of Arena Stage staff and board, local theater artists and community partners. Judging is based on the following criteria:

  • Originality – the uniqueness/creativity of the monologue
  • Character – the quality of the development of the character in the monologue
  • Storytelling – the engaging quality of the monologue
  • Structure – the dramatic arc of the monologue
  • Theatricality – the degree to which the piece is for the stage (rather than a novel or essay)

What do the winners receive?
Up to three winners will receive a performance of their monologue at Arena Stage by members of the cast of Our War at a post-show public reading on November 6 following the 8:00 p.m. performance. Selected writers will also receive a session with American Voices New Play Institute Dramaturg Jocelyn Clarke, a listing in the Our War program and an award certificate. Video clips of the performed monologues will be posted on Arena Stage’s website and on social media.