Bela Kiralyfalvi National Student Playwriting Competition

Accepting Submissions for 2025

Submissions for 2024 have closed and will be revealed in April. We are currently accepting submissions for 2025.


Award & Submission

The winning playwright will receive:

  • An invitation to be the guest-artist-in-residence for a development workshop culminating in a staged reading or a fully realized production
  • The residency may include class visits and other University events
  • The show may be entered as an associate or participating entry in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF)
  • The script will be submitted to KCACTF for consideration in playwriting award categories
  • Travel and lodging (within the US) is reimbursed

Please include with your submission:

  • Original, unpublished and unproduced script
  • A character list with short description for each
  • A synopsis
  • A playwright/artist statement
  • Headshot and bio for marketing if work is selected
  • See guidelines below for more details


  1. All submissions are completed using the submission form link.
  2. The contest will be open to all undergraduate and graduate students enrolled at any college or university in the United States. 
  3. Submissions must be:
    1. Original
    2. Unpublished
    3. Unproduced
  4. Full-length and one-act plays may be submitted
    1. Full-length plays in one or more acts should be a minimum of 90 minutes playing time
    2. Two short plays on related themes by the same author will be judged as one entry. The total playing time should be a minimum of 90 minutes
    3. One-act plays should be a minimum of 30 minutes playing time to a maximum of 60 minutes playing time
    4. Musicals should be submitted to the Music Theatre Incubator program
  5. Scripts should contain no more than 4 - 6 characters and the setting must be suitable for an 88-seat black box theatre
  6. Eligible playwrights may submit up to two entries per contest year
  7. Scripts must be typed and arranged in professional play script format
  8. Two title pages must be included
    1. One should display the author’s name, address, telephone number and email address if applicable
    2. The other should only display the name of the script; do not include any personal identifying information 
  9. The deadline for submission is December 14th. The winner will be notified on February 14th.
  10. No entry may be withdrawn after January 15th

Selection Process

The selection of the winning play will be conducted by a panel of three or more approved adjudicators from the school faculty, students, or alumni. Adjudicators will be looking for scripts that are suitable for an 88-seat black box theatre. This is defined as scripts with settings that are capable of being produced with a limited budget, by student designers, and specifically written to be performed onstage, i.e. scripts with workable costume/scenic changes and with limited production elements. (Scripts that are written in a cinematic style--overly complex costume and setting changes--will be rejected).

Development Process

The selected script will go through a development process with the assigned director, which will involve re-writing and polishing the script. Staged readings will also be used to assist with this process.