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About The Festival

Back for the fifth year and taking place at Urbanite Theatre, The 2024 Modern Works Festival is a five-day playwriting contest, reading festival, and celebration of women in theatre.


Three finalists will be selected by a panel of play readers to present their work as a staged reading during the Festival. The Festival will culminate in an audience roundtable discussion, and Festival Passholders will have the opportunity to cast a vote for their favorite of the three works, awarding the winner a prize of $3,200!


Seeking new work from emerging and established female playwrights. Playwrights must be available to attend all festival rehearsals and talkbacks, in Sarasota, FL. Rehearsals will take place September 2 - 4, 2024. Staged Reading performances will take place Sept 5 -8.

Interested playwrights are encouraged to read Urbanite’s mission statement and production history to get an idea of the type of work we produce.

No Entry Fee
Festival Awards:
Winner: $3,200 (1)
Finalists: $650 (2)

Submission Rules & Requirements

  • Submissions must be from female playwrights

  • Playwrights must reside in the United States

  • Plays must be unproduced and unpublished with limited development

  • Plays that have been previously submitted to Urbanite Theatre or the Modern Works Festival are not eligible to be submitted again

  • No musicals or translations

  • Full length plays only (defined as 60 minutes or more)

  • Must require three performers or fewer

  • Must include quality, female roles that are well-represented

  • Must include a contact page and character breakdown

  • One submission per playwright

  • Playwright must be available to attend the festival in person (September 4-8, 2024), including rehearsals (Rehearsals: September 2-4, 2024)

Festival Rules & Requirements

  • Festival Rules and Guidelines:-Three finalists will be chosen to participate in the Modern Works Festival

  • Each finalist will receive the following: a female professional director and stage manager, stage directions reader, professional actors, a table read, 15 rehearsal hours, a staged reading with a total of three staged reading performances and facilitated post-show talkbacks

  • Staged readings will have some lighting support, an intro and outro song if wished, music stands, chairs provided, costumes or additional internal music is not allowed as the readings are text focused

  • Actors, stage managers, directors will be comprised of local and non-local artists, AEA and non AEA

  • Winner of festival will receive a $3200 prize

  • The two remaining finalists will each receive an award of $650

  • All Finalists will receive an additional stipend of $250 to assist with daily food expenses

  • Housing, Travel to/from Sarasota will be provided

  • Finalists will be selected by panel of readers and notified by Urbanite Theatre on July 29, 2024

  • Submissions will be capped after the first 300 scripts are received

  • The volume of submissions will prevent us from providing individual feedback

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