CTC 24-Hour Student Play Festival

Saturday, May 27, 2017 at 7 pm at the Contemporary Theater Company

Writers’ Commitment: 12 am – 9 am, Directors’ Commitment: 7 am – 10 pm

Actors’ Commitment: 8 am – 10 pm, Tech Commitment: 9 am – 10 pm

For ten years, the CTC’s annual 24-Hour Play Festival was a staple of the winter season, uniting company members of every stripe in a virtually-unwinnable deathmatch against their own creative impulses.

Initially five (and eventually six) short plays had to be written, cast, directed, rehearsed, produced, and performed in just 24 hours. Time-released prompts kept everyone endlessly adrift in the shifting sands of the collaborative morass, and yet inevitably new works would emerge with indelible vigor and unrepeatable spontaneity.

The passion for creation inspired by a 24HPF is too valuable to be restricted to the veterans alone. New generations must take up the mantle and carry the short-play traditions forward, gaining the experience and the knowledge that made us who we are.

Students rose to the challenge last year for the 1st Annual, and we hope you shall accept the daunting task again. Fusing our passion for hit-the-ground-running education, think-on-your-feet training, and run-for-your-life ambition that simultaneously predicates and exceeds any reasonable capacity for success, we proudly announce:

The 2nd Annual 24-Hour Student Play Festival! 

Wherein we gather 6 writers, 5 directors, 5 stage managers, 15 actors/actresses, 5 extras, 2 lighters, 2 sound designers, 1 artistic director, 2 live musicians, 1 production manager, 2 costumers, 1 box office manager, and 4 run crew!

And all of these people will be between the ages 15 and 22!

So here we are. We need you. Especially if you are a theatermaker between the aforementioned ages.

So, answer the questions by April 30 and prepare for a wild ride.



Write a play: Writers arrive at the theater at 11:30 pm on Friday, May 26. At 12 am, the writers receive prompts and begin writing an 8-15 minute play. At 6 am, the writers turn in their plays to be printed. At 7 am, the writers are paired with a director/stage manager team and they read through the play together. At 8:30 am, the writers sit in on auditions and help their director cast the show. The writers are then free to go sleep all day!

Write the audition monologue: The audition monologue writer arrives at the theater at 11:30 pm on Friday, May 26. At 12 am, the writer receives a prompt at the same time as the playwrights. The audition monologue writer writes a monologue that will be given to every actor at the start of the day and performed by each for auditions. The audition monologue writer must email the completed monologue to the production manager when they are done, and they are free to leave when they are done writing. This is their only obligation for the day.

Direct a play: Directors arrive at 7 am, draw prompts, and meet with their stage manager and writer and read the play together. At 8:20 am, the directors are present for auditions and cast their plays with the writer. Directors are each in charge of directing and shaping their 8-15 minute play with their cast.

Stage manage a play: Stage managers arrive at 7 am and meet with their director and writer to do an intial read-through of the play. Stage managers serve as the link between their play and the tech team. Stage managers are in the room with the director and actors and help keep track of all tech needs and relay those needs to the tech team. Stage managers also help coordinate getting extras for their play, helping run lines as necessary, and running the backstage during their play.

Act in a play: Actors arrive at 8 am, receive the audition monologue (which does not need to be memorized) and have 30 minutes to prepare before auditions. Actors are cast and spend the rest of the day rehearsing! You have to know your lines at the end of the day, so quick memorization is key!

Be an extra in one or more plays: Extras arrive at 9:30 am and will be sent to different plays as needed throughout the day. Sometimes extras are given lines, sometimes they serve as crowds, sometimes they perform in many plays! We have no way of knowing until the plays are written! But rest assured you will be needed and you will have more than enough to do!

Costume design: Arrive at 9 am. With access to the CTC’s costumes, some quick DIY projects, and a lot of ingenuity, the costume designers create all the costumes necessary for these brand new plays!

Light the show: Arrive at 9 am. As lighting designer, you have to be quick on your feet and able to write cues, focus specials, and show these plays in their best light very quickly!

Design sound for the show: Arrive at 9 am. Shows often need sound effects for their plays, and that’s where the sound designer comes in. Like everyone else, the sound designer will be racing the clock to find or create sound effects needed for the plays.

Accompany the show live as a musician: Arrive at 9 am. Music can make any play come alive in a new way. We love having live musicians at Micetro Improv every week, and have found them invaluable at the 24-Hour Play Festival. Some shows may need background music, some may have a big musical number!

Artistic Direct: The Artistic Director prior to the beginning of the festival, creates prompts for the writers and directors. The Artistic Director will arrive at 11:30 pm with the writers to give out prompts. Once the writers have their prompts, go sleep! Come back at 7 am to hand out the directors’ prompts. Throughout the day, the Artistic Director will sit in on rehearsals, helping directors identify and solve issues that come up. The Artistic Director will ensure that the tech time in the theater in the afternoon is used wisely by the directors and give guidance as needed.

Production Manage: The Production Manager is in charge of all things tech. Arrive at 6 am to print the newly written scripts. Print the audition monologue and give it to the actors as they arrive. Ensure that the auditions run smoothly. When the tech team arrives, have everyone read the plays together to get a sense of what each play might need. Keep the master list of all props that are needed. Serve as the point person for all information coming from the stage managers. Delegate responsibilities for finding or making props, and ensure that props go to their plays as soon as possible. The Production Manager is in charge of backstage. Coordinate the run crew for smooth transitions between plays, and keep the backstage organized.

Box Office Manage: Arrive at 4 pm. The Box Office Manager is in charge of getting the front of house ready for the audience, handling all ticket sales, and coordinating ushers and playbills.

Run crew: Arrive at 9 am. The run crew, working under the Production Manager, is in charge of getting or creating all props and set pieces. The run crew works backstage during the tech times for each play and executes the transitions and any other unusual tech needs – there is always something crazy that need to be done!