STAGE Scientists, Technologists, and Artists Generating Exploration

5th STAGE International Script Competition Submission Guidelines

  1. Submitted plays must explore scientific and/or technological stories, themes, issues and/or events. Science and/or technology must figure prominently in the script, whether in content or form or both. Biographical dramas, history plays, and medical dramas are discouraged unless they significantly employ science and/or technology. Authors are strongly urged to avoid the stereotypes often assigned to science, technology, and those who engage in these disciplines. This competition is not open to plays written in the genre of science fiction.
  2. All entries must be postmarked on or before December 1, 2011.
  3. Specific eligibility requirements:
    1. All plays must be original, full-length (minimum running time: 70 minutes), and submitted in English. (See item #3f, below, for information about translations.)
    2. Plays that have been published or reviewed, or that have begun (i.e., first rehearsal) or received a professional production prior to the submission deadline, are not eligible. Plays that have had readings or a workshop are acceptable.
    3. Plays or theatre pieces incorporating multi-media are eligible and encouraged, as is material presented in a new form or not entirely script-based. To enable adequate evaluation in these cases, authors must submit a detailed artistic statement that describes such elements in a clear and understandable manner. Those working with/in multi-media/new forms must also submit samples of the visual/aural interpretation of the piece, e.g., sketches, slides, DVD, CD, or the like.
    4. Musicals are eligible. When submitting musicals, the inclusion of any available supplemental materials (e.g., a CD with excerpts from the musical score) is strongly encouraged.
    5. Original material based on an existing published work or the like may be submitted if the author(s):
      1. are the owners of the existing published work, or
      2. have written permission from the author and owner of the existing published work to adapt this work for the stage and a copy of this written permission accompanies the submission of the play and all supporting materials.
      Any adaptations that do not fulfill these requirements are not eligible.
    6. Plays that have been translated into English:
      1. must be submitted as a collaborative script by the author(s) and translator(s), or
      2. must include a written statement from the translator giving free and clear ownership of the translation to the original author, and
      3. are not eligible if they have been published or performed in their original language (as per item #3b, above).
    7. Authors may submit only one script per contest cycle.
    8. Scripts submitted in a previous contest cycle may be resubmitted only if:
      1. they have been significantly re-written, i.e., more than 50% of the script must be substantially changed from the previous submission, and
      2. they have been submitted only once before. No script may be submitted a third time.
    9. No screenplays are being accepted at this time.
    10. Those involved in any aspect of the STAGE Script Competition application or review process are not eligible to enter.
  4. To assist the STAGE Competition in ongoing fund-raising efforts - and to thereby assist future artists - winning author(s) are asked to specifically acknowledge the support of STAGE, the Professional Artists Lab, and the California NanoSystems Institute in the credits of any work that incorporates the winning play.
  5. The winning play will be announced on this website in July, 2012. The winning author will be notified directly, prior to public notification.
  6. Scripts will be judged by an esteemed panel of jurors. For a list of past judges, please click here.
  7. All submissions must include:
    1. A cover letter.
    2. Completed and signed entry form, as follows:
      Please submit the entry form online. After you click on the "Submit Entry Form" button, a confirmation page will appear on your screen. Please print out this confirmation page, have all collaborators sign and date the form in the space provided, and mail it in with your script copies and other submission materials. Click here to go to the entry form.
    3. A bio/resume for each author/collaborator.
    4. Two copies of a separate one-page (maximum) synopsis of the script. Include the name of the play at the top of this page, but identification and/or the name(s) of the author(s) must not appear anywhere on the synopsis.
    5. Two copies of a separate written statement with answers to the following three application questions:
      1. How, specifically, does your play relate to the fields of science and/or technology?
      2. How has your play developed up to the present? Include information about the artistic evolution of the play and its ideas. Also include information regarding past readings, workshops, etc.
      3. How do you envision the future development of the script and the culmination of this work?

      It is understood that, in some cases, names of collaborators may need to be mentioned as part of the developmental history, but again, do not include the name(s) of the author(s) anywhere in your answers to these three application questions.

    6. Three (3) copies of the play, in English. Since scripts will be read as blind submissions, the title pages on all copies of the play must include only the name of the play and the year in which it was written. Identification and/or the name(s) of the author(s) must not appear anywhere on the scripts. Each script must include a list of characters or a cast breakdown. Double-sided photocopies of scripts are encouraged.

Receipt of complete submissions will be sent by e-mail. Please note that it may take up to three weeks for entries to be processed before a receipt is sent.

We regret that it is not possible to return any submission materials.

Click here for a summary/checklist of all required submission materials.

Send submission materials to:

STAGE Script Competition
Professional Artists Lab
CNSI - MC 6105
3241 Elings Hall - Bldg. 266
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-6105

Please direct all inquiries about the STAGE Script Competition to:


To learn more about the Professional Artists Lab or the California NanoSystems Institute, please visit our respective websites: