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Metropolitan Playhouse
The American Legacy

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East Village Chronicles, Volume 15
June 2020

Deadline - Sunday, January 31, 2020

Metropolitan Playhouse, New York's OBIE Award-winning explorer of America's Theatrical Heritage, is currently accepting submissions for new one-act plays inspired by the life and history of New York's Lower East Side. 
Submissions will be evaluated by Metropolitan's artistic staff, and we will produce up to 5 of the submitted plays in June 2020, as part of ourAnnual East Village Theater Festival.

Playwrights will receive an honorarium of $100 for their submissions.

Subject - Very Important:

Plays MUST pertain specifically, though not necessarily exclusively, to the East Village and Lower East Side of Manhattan. 
Please DO NOT submit plays that do not conform to this simple guideline.  We are eager not to waste your--and our--time.  Plays that do not in some way illuminate life and/or conditions in that neighborhood--past, present or future--will not be considered.  The subject or theme may well pertain to other places as well, but they must be quite specifically applicable to the East Village/Lower East Side.

As a secondary consideration, and as in prior years, preference will be given to plays that pertain to a chosen theme. For Volume 15, the theme is Dissent as it relates to life in the East Village of today and in eras past.  (See below for more information.)

Submission Deadline:

Completed scripts must be RECEIVED, by mail or e-mail, by 5:00 pm Sunday, January 31, 2020.

By e-mail (strongly preferred)
PLEASE SUBMIT as ".pdf" files to

By Mail:
Metropolitan Playhouse
220 E 4th Street
New York, NY 10009

The Festival
East Village Chronicles, Vol. 15 is the 15th seasonal festival of new plays that celebrate and explore the varied history and eclectic culture that have defined Manhattan's Lower East Side (in all its permutations).  The selected plays may include a variety of styles and tones, unified by their being clearly related to life in the theater's neighborhood.

Plays will receive at least one informal reading shortly after selection, in order to give the playwright an early opportunity to hear their new work and respond to any questions raised by actors and any Metropolitan artistic staff who may be in attendance.

Performance Dates (subject to change):   June 2 - 14, 2020

Metropolitan Playhouse will produce the plays on our 3/4 thrust stage in our 51 seat theater at 220 E 4th Street.

The plays will be directed by a director engaged by Metropolitan to coordinate and rehearse the entire festival.

The plays will be performed by a core company of actors, cast specifically for the festival, each of whom will most likely perform in more than one festival play.  The cast of any given play will be drawn from this core company, and therefore anyone cast must be suitable for more than one play.  Because we are forming a company, while playwrights' input is highly desired, final decisions remain with Metropolitan's artistic staff.

The Theme for 2020: Dissent
The Chronicles plays have been connected each year in that they have focused on a certain topic, theme, or timeline.  Selecting plays that are inspired by some such organizing principle helps to give the festival shape and to enrich the experience for audience members.  (See * below for further discussion of the theme idea.)

This year, the Chronicles will be devoted to Dissent.  We believe this theme is especially resonant within the context of our national conversation and the particular history and character of the neighborhood.  In our neighborhood, with its history of social activism, its long defiance of the conventions of mainstream lifestyles, its tradition of political opposition, dissent has always had a home address.

Playwrights are encouraged to respond directly, indirectly, and creatively to this idea; how a play relates to the notion of "Dissent" is up to the playwright. 
Technical Guidelines
We are seeking plays of between 10 minutes and 30 minutes in length that can be played by 5 or fewer actors.
The plays may be presented with at least one other in a given evening, and as a consequence, should not require elaborate set or properties.

Include the playwright’s name, contact information, and a brief, one-paragraph plot summary on the title coversheet of the script. Additionally, scripts need page numbers.

Sidney Fortner
East Side Stories Producer, Metropolitan Playhouse

212 995 8410

* Interviews from regarding past festivals and the selection of themes may be found at:
, and