Deadline: August 16, 2010

The purpose of this biennial workshop is to encourage writers to create artistic theatrical scripts for young audiences. It provides a forum through which each playwright receives constructive criticism and the support of a development team consisting of a professional director and dramaturg. Plays will be cast from professional, experienced, age-appropriate actors from Central Indiana.

Plays should be intended for young audiences third grade through high school (no play is expected to appeal to all ages simultaneously). Playwrights must suggest the appropriate age category on the official entry form.

  1. Scripts designed for the youngest audience, grades 3-5, should be approximately 30-45 minutes in length. Plays designed for grades 6 and above should have a minimum performance length of approximately 45 minutes.
  2. One development slot will be reserved for a script aimed at the 3-5th grade audience.
  3. Scripts must not be committed to publication at the time of submission. Commissioned works that are not in development are eligible.
  4. Scripts previously produced in an educational or vocational setting are eligible, if playwrights are eager to pursue development of the script.
  5. Scripts previously produced professionally are NOT eligible. (i.e., productions in which the director and actors have been paid).
  6. If the play is an adaptation or dramatization, written proof must be provided that the original work is in public domain or permission of the holder of the copyright has been granted.
  7. Musicals will not be accepted for the 2011 contest.
  8. Only ONE submission per playwright is accepted.

Submission Guidelines

  1. Manuscripts must be submitted electronically.
  2. Author’s name MUST NOT APPEAR in any manner on the manuscript.
  3. Supporting materials (reviews, publicity, etc.) SHOULD NOT accompany the submission.
  4. All submissions will be acknowledged via email.
  5. Plays submitted to previous Bonderman National Youth Theatre Playwriting Workshops are ineligible.
  6. Playwrights give permission for their work or portions of it to be read at the Symposium and to be archived in the Child Drama Collection, Hayden Library, at Arizona State University.
  7. Playwrights whose work is being considered for full development (ie a potential finalist) will be asked to submit a brief history of the work and goals for the week of development. Subsequently, each playwright will be expected to confer with his/her director and dramaturg prior to casting.
  8. Playwrights are expected to be in residence in Indianapolis throughout the workshop and symposium.
  9. Each submitting playwright must also complete and send an entry form electronically. All submissions MUST include a brief synopsis and a cast list. The synopsis should be no more than one page and should include:
  • list of unusual effects or technical requirements;
  • list of characters noting age and sex, (and possible doublings).


  1. Submissions must be received by August 16, 2010. Late submissions will NOT be accepted.
  2. Winners will be contacted in December 2010.
  3. Submissions not following the guidelines will be considered ineligible.
  4. Any future production or publication of a finalist play must give the following credit: _____________ was a winner of the 2011 National Waldo M. and Grace C. Bonderman Playwriting Workshop and was featured in a rehearsed reading at the Indiana Repertory Theatre, Indianapolis.

If you have questions, please address inquiries to:

To enter your script into the workshop selection process, please mail to: