Call for Playwrights

Call for submissions to TheatreOne’s Emerging Voices new play development program

Nanaimo, BC – Theatre One’s Emerging Voices is now accepting submissions for the 2020-2021 season.  Emerging Voices, now in its 16th year, is a series of workshops and staged readings of three new, original Canadian plays by local and regional playwrights. Participating playwrights benefit from dramaturgical support before, during and after the workshops, have the opportunity to engage with professional artists during the day-long CAEA workshop and see their plays read before live audiences that evening, receiving valuable feedback from actors and patrons.

Interested playwrights are invited to submit scripts to TheatreOne’s Artistic Associate, Nicolle Nattrass at: [email protected]. To meet eligibility criteria, the scripts must be new, Canadian plays by local and regional (BC) playwrights that have not received a production. Due to current Covid-19 restrictions, plays with small casts will be given preference during this time.

New scripts will be selected by August 15, 2020 for the 16th season, but further submissions are always welcome. There is no fee for submitting or for taking part. 

Emerging Voices supports the Equity in Theatre Initiative, Playwrights Guild of Canada which promotes gender equality and diversity in theatre.

Canadian Playwriting Competition


The Canadian Playwriting Competition is open to original scripts of drama or comedy, either full-length or one-act. Deadline for entry is December 31 annually. Independent jurors will decide upon winners in each category with a prize of $1,000 awarded for the chosen full-length, $750 for the one-act, and $500 for a script of special merit. In addition, one of the three winning plays may be chosen to be workshopped at Theatre BC’s Mainstage festival in July. This choice will be made at the discretion of the judges.

For detailed information about the current round of the Playwriting Competition, click here.

Theatre BC’s 2018 Playwriting Competition Results

Congratulations to the winners of this year’s annual Theatre BC Playwriting Competition:

  • Full Length Play“Boom Baby” by Natalie Meisner
  • One-Act Play“Castle on the Farm” by Alaina Baskerville-Bridges
  • Special Merit“Where The Wind Carries Us” by Andrew Lee

Finalists and runners-up included “Trudeaumania” by Daniel McLeod, and “The Wrong Bashir”by Zahida Rahumtulla.

Theatre BC will feature the One-Act Play winner, “Castle on the Farm” by Alaina Baskerville-Bridges in our New Play Workshop at Mainstage this summer in Port Alberni. Workshop instructor Kathryn Shaw will take participants through the script, with a focus on acting and directing.

The New Play Workshop will be held over three days from July 10 – 12, 2019. More workshop details and online registration will be available soon.

Full Length Play“Boom Baby” by Natalie Meisner

Dr. Natalie Meisner is a full Professor in the Department of English, Languages, and Literature at Mount Royal and a celebrated Canadian Author. Her stage plays have won numerous awards, been produced across the country, and been featured in Canadian anthologies. She is member of Eastern Front Theatre’s Playwright’s Unit where Boom Baby will receive its world premiere next April. Speed Dating For Sperm Donors will be published by Playwright’s Canada Press in 2020. Her new play Area 33 is currently under development with DMV Theatre and supported by the NAC Collaborations Program. Meisner’s books, Double Pregnant: Two Lesbians Make a FamilyMy Mommy, My Mama, My Brother & MeGrowing Up SaltyLegislating Love: The Everett Klippert Story, take on social justice themes with warmth and humour. Her collection of poetry, Baddie One Shoe (Frontenac) is an ode the renegades past and present who fight the power with laughter. Meisner’s areas of specialization include creative writing, drama, theories of comedy /laughter and glbtiqa+ literatures. She hails from Nova Scotia and is a wife and mom to two great boys.

One-Act Play“Castle on the Farm” by Alaina Baskerville-Bridges

Alaina Baskerville-Bridges is a writer living in Victoria, BC. She holds a creative writing degree from the University of Victoria where she studied playwriting under Joan Macleod.  Her play, Turn to Me, was featured in the Victoria Cold Reading Series in 2017. Her play, Castle on the Farm, was featured in the Spark Festival Emerging Playwright’s Cabaret at the Belfry Theater in 2018. She has had her fiction shortlisted for ROOM magazine.

Special Merit“Where The Wind Carries Us” by Andrew Lee

Andrew Lee is an award-winning playwright from Hamilton, Ontario. Eleven plays he wrote or co-wrote have made it to the stage. He is a member of the Theatre Aquarius Playwriting Unit. In 2017 Andrew won the Hamilton Fringe New Play Contest and in 2016 won the Theatre BC Special Merit Prize. He makes his home with his awesome wife and favourite writing collaborator, Katrine, and his amazing daughters — Nora and Iris.

Playwriting Competition (2017) Results

Judging in Theatre BC’s 2017 Canadian Playwriting Competition is now complete.

Submissions were received from across the country, with a total of 24 plays in the One Act category and 40 in the Full Length category.

We would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge all contestants and express our appreciation for their hard work and creativity. We are pleased to announce the three winners chosen by our jurors:

Full Length Winner – $1,000 prize:

Port Moody Confidential – Glimpses written by Cathie Young (Port Coquitlam, BC)

One Act Winner – $750 prize:

A Community of Saints written by Shawn Erker (Vancouver, BC)

Special Merit Winner – $500 prize:

The Janus Mask written by Camille Pavlenko (Calgary, AB)

The Full Length Winner, Port Moody Confidential – Glimpses, by Cathie Young, was chosen for the New Play Workshop at Mainstage 2018 in Vernon, BC. The workshop will take place July 4th, 5th and 6th, culminating with a staged reading on the afternoon of the 6th.

Our thanks to everyone who helped make Theatre BC’s 2017 Canadian Playwriting Competition a success.

Cathie Young, Full Length Winner

Cathie Young works with Expect Exceptional Theatre Company which is a core group of about 10 artists who explore the spoken word and storytelling.  EETC also provides workshops making  theatre training accessible by offering challenging and unique workshops mentored by theatre professionals  at affordable prices.  Cathie has also directed plays with Stage 43, Emerald Pig and Langley Players a few being Hobson’s Choice, The Rainmaker, Macbeth and The Winter’s Tale.