Ten-Minute Plays

National Ten-Minute Play Award

Submission deadline is November 1 of each year. All plays are submitted to the Regional Playwriting Chair only.

Please include with your submission the official cover sheet for ten minute plays.

Regional Playwriting Chair’s email address: Ashley Edwards, edwardsae13@gmail.com

Ten Minute Plays are no more than 10 minutes long. Please refer to the 10-minute guidelines below. It contains very good advice.

The submitted plays will be read by at least two readers from a different region. The finalists usually the top six choices will be invited to the Region 6 Festival in San Angelo, TX, Feb. 28 – March 3, 2018.

The playwrights whose 10 minute scripts have been selected for the Region 6 festival will be invited to the festival and must be able to attend all dates of the regional festival. They will be assigned a director, stage manager, and group of actors. These creative teams will work on the scripts throughout the festival.  Playwrights must attend audition, rehearsal, performance, and response of their scripts.  Following the readings, two of the six plays will be selected as National Semi-finalists to be considered for an invitation to the national festival in Washington, D.C., in the Spring.

Region VI NPP (along with all regions) is now using Submittable for our play submissions! Click the link the below and create an account. It is free of charge.



Guidelines for the Ten-Minute Play

The Ten-Minute Play has become a popular form of production.  To help you in your journey through this form, consider the following:

A Ten-Minute Play is a play, not a scene or a skit.  Structurally, it should have a beginning, middle and end–just like any good one-act or full-length play.  Reach beyond the surface. Enrich the text with subtext.

Since we only have ten minutes to bring the story full circle, characters should be clearly established and a dramatic conflict should be posed as quickly as possible.  The resolution of that conflict is what plays out across the remaining pages.

Ten minutes means 7 or 8 pages, certainly no more than 9 or 10. Use standard playwriting format, 12 pt Times New Roman font.

While not wanting to hamper anyone’s creativity, recognize that a Ten-Minute Play will undoubtedly be presented in an evening of Ten-Minute Plays.  Therefore, elaborate settings, multiple characters, extravagant productions values, etc., could conceivably eliminate your play from consideration.

The true success of a Ten-Minute Play is reliant on the writer’s ability to bring an audience through the same cathartic/entertainment experience that a good one-act or full-length play accomplishes–i.e., sympathetic characters with recognizable needs encompassed within a resolvable dramatic conflict.

For some great examples of student plays that have succeeded in KCACTF, look at a copy of The Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival Presents: Award-Winning Plays from the Michael Kanin National Playwriting Program, Gary Garrison, ed. New York: Back Stage Books, 2006.  ISBN: 082308390X.  Find it at your library, or purchase a copy online.

For more information on the Ten-Minute Play Award, visit the KCACTF national website.