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3-Minute Playwriting Contest

The 3- Minute Playwriting Contest is open only to Members of ICWP. 
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Congratulations to our

3-Minute Playwriting Contest Winners*

(Please scroll to bottom of screen to see future submission deadlines & contest information.
CLICK HERE to access scripts that have been provided by previous contest winners.)

October 2019 Contest Winners

Theme: Food

(in alphabetical order by playwright name)

Hungry Women by MT Cozzola

MT Cozzola is a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists. Her plays have been produced and developed at Piven Theatre; Chicago Dramatists; The Side Project; The Fine Print Theatre; Victory Gardens; Donny’s Skybox; La MaMa ETC; and elsewhere. Commissions: Working Women’s History Project; Step Up Productions; The Side Project; and Something Marvelous: A Festival of Magical Realism. Honors: Winner, Heartland Theatre’s 2015 New Plays from the Heartland; 2015 Equity Library Showcase Finalist; 2014 and 2018 Illinois Arts Council Awards; Residencies at Hawthornden Castle, La MaMa Umbria, Ragdale, and Playa. She is represented by The Robert A. Freedman Dramatic Agency.

Double Entree by Nancy Gall-Clayton

Nancy Gall-Clayton writes plays about historic women and events as well as comedies. Her female characters are complex, often older, and never stereotypes. Nancy was a Tennessee Williams Scholar at Sewanee Writers Conference and a Visiting Artist at Ohio State University. More than 80 of her plays have been on stages in the USA, Australia, Canada, Denmark, and Japan. She is published by Dramatic Publishing, Smith & Kraus, Motes Books, and others. Nancy is a member of the International Centre for Women Playwrights, 365 Women a Year Playwrights, Southeastern Theatre Conference, the Dramatists Guild, and the New Play Exchange.

On the Menu by Catherine Haigney

Catherine Haigney (AKA Nina) has a Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia and taught the “Great Books Program” at St. John’s College from 1989-2016. She now lives in the Ragged Mountains of Virginia and has begun a second career in writing absurdist plays. Ten of her scripts are posted on Her other plays use mythology with magical realism to highlight the connection between various political oppressions and our mass destruction of nature. Her work in 2019 will center on climate change and why we cultivate denial. Catherine’s play scripts are posted on  "I love the challenge of ICWP’s 3-Minute Contest! I think of a three-page script as being like the short poetic forms (e.g. haiku or double dactyl) that poets use... for all kinds of reasons. Each time I’ve written one, I’ve learned something new about playwriting." - C. Haigney


Over the past twenty years, Keith Pearson, as Managing Director of The Theatre Company (TTC), has been responsible for some of the most dynamic and adventurous performance work which has been seen in Kenya.  He has been instrumental in the development of the devised work technique. Voice of a Dream (2002) KigeziNdoto (2006), Githaa (2006), Sauti Kimya (2009) and My Moving Home (2010), Shungwaaya (2012 and toured Mali in 2013) were developed through the technique of engaging the experiences of the performers.  He is the proprietor of the Karichota Arts Centre in the Mt. Kenya forest near Nanyuki and the proud father of Mo Wanjeri (of Yellow Light Machine music group) and William Maragua.

July 2019 Contest Winners

Theme: Social Change
(in alphabetical order by playwright name)

Metaphysics by Mona Curtis

Mona is a self-taught artist and playwright, ESL teacher and blogger. She came late to theater. She wrote her first play at 40 and had her first production at 59. But writing and art have been a part of her life since she can remember. The International Centre for Women Playwrights has been her artistic lifeline, at least as regards to theater. According to Mona, “Being self-taught has its advantages and disadvantages. There are many things about theatre I don’t know and that’s why I’m so thankful for ICWP and its listserv in particular. Every day I receive thoughts and insights into theater and a place where I can ask questions and get answers in a supportive atmosphere. But I think my work also bring a freshness and a new perspective to theater that maybe wouldn’t have been there if I had had a more traditional education.”

Mona’s medium of choice is Theatre of the Absurd. Watching The Bald Soprano by Eugene Ionesco is what inspired her to become a playwright. “It’s funny. I didn’t intend to write absurd,” Mona says, “I was trying to write as realistically as I could and this is what came out.”

Weather Report by Catherine Haigney

Catherine Haigney (AKA Nina) has a Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia and taught the “Great Books Program” at St. John’s College from 1989-2016. She now lives in the Ragged Mountains of Virginia and has begun a second career in writing absurdist plays. Ten of her scripts are posted on She can be reached at, but has no presence on social media for reasons her next dystopia may reveal. “Transdroid,” a three-minute take on Artificial Intelligence applied to replacing women, celebrates the potential for solidarity between exploited beings. Her other plays use mythology with magical realism to highlight the connection between various political oppressions and our mass destruction of nature. Her work in 2019 will center on climate change and why we cultivate denial. Catherine’s play scripts are posted on  

A Better Ending for Widow Tweed by Tasha Partee

A theatre teacher, playwright, and performer, Tasha Partee has delighted in working with thespians of all ages in New York City and throughout Virginia since 2001. She holds an M.A. in Educational Theatre and English from NYU and a B.F.A. in Theatre Education from Virginia Commonwealth University. Her plays have been produced by the New York International Fringe Festival, The Hudson Guild Theatre Company under the artistic direction of Jim Furlong, Manhattan Repertory Theatre, and The New York New Works Theatre Festival. Awards include the 2019 Inspiring Teacher Award, presented by Wells Fargo and The National High School Musical Theatre Awards (also known as The Jimmy Awards). Tasha is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild and currently serves as Upper School Theatre Director at Lawrence Woodmere Academy in New York, where she works with students in grades K-12 in Theatre and Dance.


Sanjay Kumar is a practitioner of activist theatre. As the founding President of pandies' theatre and the director/chief facilitator of its productions and workshops from 1993 onwards, he has been creating performances with and for the marginalized in India for over 20 years. He has directed over 40 plays for the proscenium, many kinds of activist plays in communities over the country and worked in close conjunction with many groups and communities enabling the young of these to create their own problems around their own problems and visions.

He is a resident of the Rockefeller Bellagio Residency (Italy, 2010) for work on platform children, a participant of the US government's prestigious International Visitor Leadership Program (Social Change through Arts,2011) and alumni of the International Class for Social Therapy, East Side Institute for Long and Short Term Psychotherapy (New York, 2012). He is an Associate professor at the Hansraj College, University of Delhi. His doctoral thesis (JNU, 2014) is a PaR on applied activist theatre. He has published and presented in national and international journals and conferences and conducted workshops on theatre with the marginalized/ theatre as therapy all over the world.

April 2019 Contest Winners

Theme: Transformation
(in alphabetical order by playwright name)

Transdroid by Catherine Haigney

Catherine Haigney (AKA Nina) has a Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia and taught the “Great Books Program” at St. John’s College from 1989-2016. She now lives in the Ragged Mountains of Virginia and has begun a second career in writing absurdist plays. Ten of her scripts are posted on She can be reached at, but has no presence on social media for reasons her next dystopia may reveal. “Transdroid,” a three-minute take on Artificial Intelligence applied to replacing women, celebrates the potential for solidarity between exploited beings. Her other plays use mythology with magical realism to highlight the connection between various political oppressions and our mass destruction of nature. Her work in 2019 will center on climate change and why we cultivate denial. Catherine’s play scripts are posted on  CLICK HERE to read Catherine's winning play, Transdroid.

New Kitten by Jennifer O'Grady

Jennifer O’Grady is a playwright and poet. Full-length plays include Charlotte’s Letters (Henley Rose Award; Newvember Festival Dublin; Semifinalist: O’Neill Playwrights Conference; BETC’s Generations Award), Paranormal Love (MTWorks Newborn Festival; Finalist: Newvember Festival), Ellery (selected for The Best Women’s Stage Monologues 2017) and Quasars (selected for The Best Women’s Stage Monologues 2014 and Best Contemporary Monologues for Women 18-35). Her short plays are published or forthcoming in Thirty New Ten-Minute Plays (Applause), The Best Ten-Minute Plays 2017 and 2016 (Smith and Kraus) and Stage It 3: Twenty Ten-Minute Plays. Her plays have been produced or presented by the Irish Repertory Theatre, Rover Dramawerks, Heartland Theatre, The Bechdel Group, Monster Box Theatre, 13th Street Repertory Theatre, AboutFace Ireland, Phoenix Theatre, The Factory Theatre at Greenville University, White Mouse Theater Productions and other companies. She is also the author of two poetry books, White (Mid-List Press First Series Award) and Exclusions & Limitations (MadHat Press, 2018). Her poems have been taught, set to music and featured in numerous places including Harper’s, The New Republic, NPR, Poetry, The Kenyon Review, Poetry Daily and American Poetry: The Next Generation. She lives with her family near New York City. You can learn more about Jennifer and her work by visiting her website at

Sex Education by M. Lynda Robinson

M. Lynda Robinson has been working in theatre, film & TV for the past 30 years as an actor, director, producer, teacher, coach, and playwright in Boston, NY, & DC. She has won numerous acting and playwriting awards, and has 3 published 10-minute plays. She teaches playwriting at the Gloucester Writers Center and Acting for Film at Boston Casting & other venues. Lynda lives in Massachusetts on beautiful Cape Ann.


Kristen Osborn is a Chicago-based director and theatre maker. Currently, Kristen serves as Artistic Associate and Outreach Coordinator at Rivendell Theatre Ensemble and Literary and Casting Associate at Northlight Theatre. She is the founder and producing artistic director of JoyistLA. Directing credits include those eyes who saw death at Red Theatre (workshop), The Opportunities of Extinction at North Central College, Fog at UCLA, JoyistLA’s First Embrace, and an original adaptation of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth, Lift. Assistant directing credits include Henry IV, (dir. Daniel Sullivan, Shakespeare Center LA,) The Scene (dir. Kimberly Senior, Writers Theatre,) Sex With Strangers (dir. Kimberly Senior, Geffen Playhouse,) Relativity (dir. BJ Jones, Northlight Theatre,) The Cake (dir. Lauren Shouse, Rivendell Theatre Ensemble,) Choir Boy (dir. Trip Cullman, Geffen Playhouse), Fighting Shadows (dir. Robert Egan, Inner-City Arts.) Kristen’s previous work with the Ojai Playwrights Conference, serving as Artistic Associate and Associate Director, has ignited in her an insatiable appetite for new play development processes. She is a graduate of UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and Television. 

January 2019 Contest Winners

Theme: Secrets
(in alphabetical order by playwright name)

Secret Sharers by Dori Appel

DORI APPEL’s plays have been widely produced in the United States and internationally. Her full-length plays, Girl Talk, Hot Flashes, and Hat Tricks, are published by Samuel French, and many of her monologues are published in anthologies. She was the winner of the Oregon Book Award in Drama in 1998 for Freud's Girls, in 1999 for The Lunatic Within, and in 2001 for Lost and Found, and has been the recipient of several other playwriting awards. She is also a widely published poet and the author of a collection of poems, Another Rude Awakening. She lives in Ashland, Oregon.

Little Match Girl by Susan Cinoman

SUSAN CINOMAN is a playwright and screenwriter whose work is published and produced internationally. Her one- act play, “Fitting Rooms” is featured in Applause Books, “Best Short Plays of 1996.” Off Broadway plays include “Cinoman and Rebeck” at The Miranda Theatre and “Gin and Bitters.” She has had numerous workshop productions of plays produced at The Ensemble Studio Theatre and Naked Angels. Prizes and awards included: The Best Narrative Film at New England Film and Video Festival, Official Selection by The International Berkshire Film Festival, The Maxwell Anderson Playwrights Prize, The Aristos Award, Guilford Performing Arts Prize in Drama, Circle of Excellence Award. She is also the creator of the recurring character of Ms. Cinoman on ABC-TV’s “The Goldbergs” and is a frequent contributor to the show.

Miranda's Secret by Catherine Haigney

CATHERINE HAIGNEY started writing plays in response to political events in the U.S. and decades of reading “Great Books” as a Tutor at St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland. Now living in rural Virginia, she is working on a trilogy of absurdist comedies following the adventures of a contemporary “Narcissus” who cannot escape his “Echoes,” the entourage of women who haunt and challenge him in his rise to power. The resourcefulness of women contending with patriarchy, a recurring theme in her work, surfaces in the three-minute play Miranda’s Secret. Inspired by ICWP’s theme of “Secrets” and love of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Catherine asked a “what if” question: What if Miranda realized she doesn’t want to leave the island where Ariel and Caliban are now free? Would she submit to a destiny determined by her father, or would she use her own magic to change it? Catherine’s play scripts are posted on  CLICK HERE to read Miranda's Secret.


Lindsay Price is the Vice President of Theatrefolk Inc, the co-creator of the Drama Teacher Academy and has been a professional playwright for twenty-three years. She specializes in plays for schools and student performers with over 900 productions a year across Canada, the US and overseas. Further to playwriting Lindsay has twenty-one years experience teaching workshops at conferences, festivals, and in the classroom.  She is a member of the Dramatists Guild and an invited member of the Theatre Ontario Adjudication Talent Bank.


October 2018 Contest Winners

Theme: Epiphany

(in alphabetical order by playwright name)

SEA CHANGES by Christine Emmert

Christine Emmert is a writer, actress, director and educator. Her many genres of writing include poetry, academia, playwrighting and novelist. She has just finished appearing in the PHL Bridge Festival in Philadelphia in her piece, THE PLAGUE SEEKER. A member of ICWP and the Dramatist Guild, she lives in Pennsylvania with her also creative husband and sometimes collaborator. 

Moon Pixels by Judith Pratt

Judith Pratt is also a director, theatre professor, and actor. Her plays have been produced in New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, and Cape Town South Africa, to name a few. Her full length-play The Wright Place has been published by JAC Publishing Co, and read at the Vokes Theatre in Wayland MA. Her monologue, Waah, has been published by JAC in “Singular Voices.”Most recently, Maize was read by Artemisia Theatre in Chicago in September 2015. Spiralling received a reading from Panndora Festival, Long Beach CA, in 2015, and a podcast from 12 Peers Theatre in Feb. 2016. ( In October 2016, Chimera received a reading at the Road Less Traveled Theatre in Buffalo NY. Judith is an adjunct professor of theatre at Wells College, NY and has begun to write fantasy novels.

The Harvest by Michele Rittenhouse

Michèle Raper Rittenhouse is a Southern writer living in New York that writes strong female characters. She has had the opportunity to have her work presented in London, England at the Double X Festival through the North American Association of Actors, and plays developed through the Eugene O'Neill Playwrights Conference under the artistic direction of Lloyd Richards, former dean of the Yale School of Drama and Yale Repertory Theatre. and the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference. She has been a playwright in residence with the Abingdon Theatre Company in New York City and received the Witter Bynner Fellowship, a national award given to one playwright per year. As part of the residency, she was commissioned to write and have produced Off-Broadway a new play. For full bio, visit Michèle's NPX page at

Runners Up:

Forget and Forgive by Pat Montley

Pat Montley has had 17 plays published, separately or in anthologies or textbooks (Samuel French, Playscripts Inc., Meriwether, Heinemann, Applause, Dramatic Publishing, Prentice-Hall, International Center for Women Playwrights, Dramatics Magazine). Her plays have been given over 180 presentations, including readings at the Kennedy Center, Center Stage (Baltimore) and the Abingdon Theatre, and productions at the Nebraska Repertory Theatre, the Manhattan Theatre Source, the Harold Clurman Theatre, the Nat Horne Theatre, Baltimore's Theatre Project, and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. She was one of 50 playwrights nationally commissioned by Center Stage to write a monolog for the "My America" series. Her work has been supported by a Kennedy Center Playwrights' Intensive, by residencies at the Millay Artists' Colony (NY) and the Djerassi Resident Artists Program (CA), and by grants from the Maryland and Pennsylvania Arts Councils, the Shubert Foundation, the Mary Roberts Rinehart Foundation, and Warner Brothers. CLICK HERE to read Forget and Forgive.

END by Aoise Stratford

Aoise Stratford’s plays have been produced internationally, as well as around the country at Looking Glass Theatre, City Theatre, Lakeshore Players, The American Globe, Manhattan Theatre Source, Centenary Stage, SoloChicago, Red Thread, The Hangar, Cherry Arts, The Kitchen Theatre Co., and many others. Her short play JO is currently being performed at the National Theatre in London. She has won several awards, including a Pinter Review Silver Medal and the Yukon Pacific Playwriting Award, and she has been a finalist for the Actors’ Theatre of Louisville’s Heideman Award and a nominee for The American Theatre Critics’ Association New Play Award. Her play THE UNFORTUNATES was a Time Out NY Critics Pick and winner of The Susan Glaspell Award. Aoise is a member of the Dramatists Guild and of the International Center for Women Playwrights, and is represented by Beacon Artists Agency. She currently teaches playwriting at Cornell University.


Jill Patrick has been a freelance writer and literary manager based in Atlanta, Georgia for the last sixteen years, first as host of the In-Town Atlanta Writer's Group from 2002-2006, then as Managing Artistic Director of Working Title Playwrights from 2006-2016. Since 2015, she has had a freelance column for Lint!, Japan’s premiere English as a Second Language magazine. She is the Director of New Works Reading Series at Out of Box Theatre in Marietta, Georgia, and serves on the Advisory Board for Atlanta's Essential Theatre, as well as on WTP’s Advisory Council. She is the Founding Board Vice President of the Jo Howarth Noonan Foundation for the Performing Arts, which recently hosted its second annual MoJo Festival celebrating women, wisdom and possibility. She studied Theater and Theology at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas, and holds a B.A. in Performing Arts from Clayton State University, Morrow, Georgia. She firmly believes there is no more dangerous thing than an artist without an outlet, and thrives on helping other's excel in their endeavor.

July 2018 Contest Winners

Theme: Survivors
(in no particular order)

The Last Little Girl by Kay Adshead

Kay Adshead is a poet, playwright, theatre maker and producer. She trained at RADA as an actress, where she won the Emile Littler Award for Outstanding Talent. She has played leading roles in film, theatre and TV, including Cathy in the BBC classic series Wuthering Heights, Viola in Twelfth Night and Betty in Touched at The Old Vic, and Linda in Mike Leigh’s film Kiss of Death.As a writer, she has been nominated 3 times for The Susan Smith Blackburn Award. She has written over 25 plays published by Methuen, Faber and Faber, and Oberon, with commissions and productions at The Royal National Theatre, The Royal Court, The Young Vic, The Bush, Soho Theatre, The Cock pit, The Arcola, Theatre503, The Omnibus and many more.In 1999 with Lucinda Gane, she co-founded award-winning theatre company Mama Quilla, winning amongst other awards, Edinburgh Fringe First, Adelaide Fringe Sensation Award, Adelaide Best Fringe Performance Award, MEN best Fringe Performance, nominated for an EMMA and Encore Magazine best Play of theYear.

Marney and the Cuttlefish by Elizabeth Douglas 

Formerly a nonfiction writer and magazine editor, Elizabeth Douglas is the author of The Habit (Image/Random House). Currently, she is interested in writing plays about the lives of women. Elizabeth is a member of the International Centre for Women Playwrights and the Playwrights’ Center. She lives with her husband and daughter in central New York.

Survivors by Carol Libman

Carol Libman is a Founding Member of Playwrights' Workshop (Montreal), Canada's foremost organization dedicated to the development of plays and playwrights.  Now living in Toronto, Canada, she is a long-time Alumnae Theatre Company member, co-organizer of NEXT STAGE READINGS, a monthly series of readings by members of the theatre's new Play Development Group. Recent productions include::  A Life Beyond Doubt, Tomorrow's Eve Theatre, Toronto;  A Very Different Place, Rare Day Projects, Toronto; Cornered, Inspirato 2018, 10-minute international  play festival, Toronto. Coming up: Lies and Consequences, Rare Day Projects, and  Airport Tales, Garrison Little Theatre, Fort Erie, Ontario. And now I'm looking forward to the next 3-minute play challenge.  Lots of fun to do.  Thank you, ICWP.

Honorable Mention:

Planned Obsolescence by Bara Swain

Bara Swain’s plays have been performed in 100+ venues in 20 states and three continents.  NYC theatres include Urban Stages, Barrow Group, Sam French, Abingdon, Articulate, Players Theatre, Artistic New Directions, Project Y, Symphony Space and Ego Actus.  Publishers include Smith & Kraus, Art Age Press, Applause Books, Original Works, Meriwether, and JAC Publications.  Critical Care, produced on stage and in film, is reprinted in the college textbook, Serious Daring: Creative Writing in Four Genres (Oxford U. Press) and serves as a key reading for the craft of playwriting.  Honors include Heideman Award Finalist and City Theatre’s National Award Finalist for Short Playwriting.  Bara currently serves as the Creative Consultant at Urban Stages.  


Born Perth, Scotland 1953, Joy cut folk-singing teeth at Perth Folk Club while still underage for licensed premises. She also became heavily involved in Youth Theatre and generally addicted to the arts. Since 1970, she has been prime-mover of Chapman, Scotland's Quality Literary Magazine, since 1970. Working through the magazine, she has led the way with many welcome Scottish developments – in Scots language, the teaching of Scottish literature in schools and helped steer the drift towards greater Scottish autonomy (etc!). Her dramatic work includes Gang Doun wi’ a Sang (for Perth Theatre) and The Wa’ at the Warld’s End (Radio 3 90 minute drama), both about poet and diarist William Soutar, and through Chapman, she helped revitalise Scottish drama by stimulating extensive and radical debate – leading ultimately to the creation of the Scottish National Theatre, and other projects. She has always written poetry, but also plays, criticism, reviewed for national newspapers and broadcast extensively on radio. Health issues have impeded progress lately, but she is now resuming her vocation as troublemaker and altering prioiries to focus on her own creativity. (Ouch!)

Future Contest Submission Deadlines:

January 15, 2020
April  15, 2020
July 15, 2020
October 15, 2020


  • No more than 3 pages in standard playwriting format
  • One entry per playwright
  • Your play should incorporate the theme for the month (to be announced on submission page)
  • Submissions will close after the first 30 scripts have been received or the contest deadline, whichever comes first.
  • Contest judge decisions are final.
  • You must be a current ICWP member to submit.

If you have any questions about our 3-Minute Play Contest, please feel free to send an email to

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