Applications will be open to companion plays of six Shakespeare titles.

STAUNTON, VA—American Shakespeare Center (ASC) today announces that it will accept companion plays to six Shakespeare titles for its third year of submissions to the Shakespeare’s New Contemporaries (SNC) project. The titles are All’s Well That Ends Well, Henry V, The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado about Nothing, Titus Andronicus, and Twelfth Night.

Applications will be accepted from June 3–July 15, 2019. Two selected plays will be produced in 2021.

The SNC project is an international playwriting competition designed to create a modern canon of companion pieces for each of Shakespeare’s 38 plays. ASC launched the competition in 2017 to inspire playwrights to compose original works in conversation with Shakespeare’s classics and in keeping with his staging conditions. Winning playwrights receive a $25,000 cash prize. The plays are produced at the Blackfriars Playhouse in repertory with their Shakespeare counterparts.

“As Shakespeare’s New Contemporaries grows, we continue to learn and refine the process. One change that we are making this year is considering six Shakespeare titles, rather than four,” says literary manager Anne G. Morgan. “This provides greater programmatic latitude to the ASC while giving more options to writers wanting to engage with the project. And the six Year Three titles have much to offer.”

The winning plays from the competition’s first year will premiere in 2019. Amy E. Witting’s Anne Page Hates Fun (a companion to The Merry Wives of Windsor) begins performances February 7. Mary Elizabeth Hamilton’s 16 Winters, or the Bear’s Tale (a companion to The Winter’s Tale) begins performances May 1.

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