Playwriting Rules

Closing April 30th, 2018

John Dowson (right) Actor, Director,  Mark Hayward (left), Actor,

2017 Festival Performance of  "Death of Me", by Norm Foster

(donated to the festival for use by Norm Foster)

The Very Useful Theatre Company is seeking 6 original plays to produce for our second annual One-Act Play Festival, October 4th, 5th & 6th, 2018.  The competition is open to all playwrights living in Canada with a connection to York Region.

All entrants must follow the Submission Instructions.



We only accept electronic submissions in PDF.   

We are looking for ORIGINAL plays. Please place your name on the title page (along with all your contact information), and be sure your play title appears as a header on each script page. 

For original plays please specify “New Play Development” with your synopsis. Plays should be between 20-45 minutes in length. Plays of greater lengths will not be considered, due to time constraints. Please provide as much of the following information as possible.


  • Title of Play and name of Playwright  

  • Running time for your play 

  • Number of actors

  • Play Synopsis (50 to 100 words) 

  • Copyright Agency (for non- original plays only) 

  • Sound requirements 

  • Lighting requirements 

  • Contact Person for your play. Name and contact information for our stage manager. 

  • Please include your name, address, phone number, and email address in your email submission 

Original scripts- only

Original script submissions will not be returned to the applicant.  Scripts may be retained for submission in next year’s festival. 


Play rehearsals and/or performances may be recorded or photographed for archival purposes. 

Submitting your play grants the VUTC One-Act Play Festival all performance rights for the duration of the festival, with the only financial compensation to the author being the possibility of winning the grand prize for best play of $250; second place price of $150, or third place prize of $100, this
 honorarium will be sponsored by a local business.      

Submitting your play also grants the VUTC One-Act Play Festival the right to use your name, play title, video excerpts from your play, or photographs from your play for promotional purposes for the current festival, and in the promotion of future festivals.

Playwrights may submit up to THREE plays in any festival year.  No more than one play by any playwright will be produced, regardless of the number of scripts submitted.

Keep your play to no more than 45 minutes in length.  Read it aloud and time it before submitting it! Scripts should have minimal set and technical requirements.

Playwrights should note that the VUTC reserves the right to use gender-neutral casting.

If you have any questions concerning the above rules, or wish further information, please contact us.

Designed by DPK Design 

Festival Volunteers


Interested in Theatre but not as an actor, playwright, or director? The Very Useful Theatre Company is seeking Volunteers to support the third annual One-Act Play Festival.  Let us know how much time you have, we are seeking all levels of support, a few hours once or a full Festival support position.

No experience necessary!

We support High School Volunteer hours as well.


 “We would like acknowledge that the Town of Newmarket is located over lands originally used and occupied by the First Peoples of the Williams Treaties First Nations and other Indigenous Peoples and thank them for sharing this land. We would also like to acknowledge the Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nation as our close neighbour and friend, one that we strive to build a co-operative and respectful relationship with”.

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