2022 Maine Playwrights Festival

The Maine Playwrights Festival is celebrating its 20th year of nurturing the development of new scripts by Maine writers. The festival is centered on developing and honing short plays, from submission through staged readings, rewrites, and culminating in a series of public performances in the spring. The festival is produced through a collaboration between Maine-based directors, actors, dramaturgs, and designers, during a focused rehearsal process in March and April, 2022.

If the public health situation allows, the 2022 Festival will be performed in-person on two weekends of fully staged performances of short plays (8-30 minutes in length). Each selected script will be performed on every show night during the festival. The plays will be performed in Portland in April-May of 2022, pending determination that it will be safe to do so in terms of public health. If the pandemic does not allow for in-person performances in April-May 2022, the festival will be filmed and released for on-demand streaming.

The Bi-Annual Stone Skipping Competition on Long Lake by Stowell Watters

Selections for the 2022 Festival have been announced!

MPF 2022 Featured Plays

MASKS  by Brian Arundel
Declared ‘non-essential’ at the onset of a pandemic, Earl ineptly tries to rob a convenience store. But when he unexpectedly bonds with the clerk, Earl begins to realize the extent to which cash is less valuable than compassion.

THE FAEVORITE  by Chris DeFilipp
Three friends go into the woods to perform a ritualistic spell… until something not very gourd happens and panic ensues. Then the search for the faevorite among them begins.

In 1970s Maine, a boy at the beach, playing pretend from his favorite TV show, ends up finding a monster.

THE EXPERIENCE BOX  by Kory Alexander Majansky
In an absurd near-future, people can turn to a new service to cope with their personal dramas. The Consultant warns of the dangers that come with not really living life—but could this strange method be a better way to deal with grief, questions of identity, or regret?

DIMITRIA’S KITCHEN  by Marcia Pitcher
Jo wants to end her painful cancer treatments. Her mother and sisters are struggling to keep her alive. Is there space for a family, staring down death, to reconcile?

LEAVE IT OPEN  by Jule Selbo
Roz and Sam, both with scars, meet for a blind date. It does not start well. But when the ghost in the room connects them… there’s hope that they have each found something new.

The six selected plays will be read at a sneak-preview event this February in Portland. Follow MPF social media https://www.facebook.com/MainePlaywrightsFestival and https://www.instagram.com/maineplaywrights/
for the announcement of this special advance reading of the 2022 festival plays!

2022 Playwright in Residence

Brent Askari

Brent is a playwright and actor living in Portland, Maine. His recent plays include American Underground (World premiere Barrington Stage Company 2019), Hard Cell (PlayPenn Conference 2017, world premiere Geva Theatre Center 2019), The Refugees (Winner of National New Play Network’s 2019 Smith Prize for Political Theatre), and White Party (Public readings at EST LA and Palm Beach Dramaworks, workshopped at Florida Repertory Theatre). Brent is a National New Play Network affiliate artist and a member of Mad Horse Theatre Company. He is currently working on a new commission for Barrington Stage Company.

As Playwright in Residence for MPF, Askari will lead a script development workshop for the festival’s featured writers and semi-finalists, as well as providing feedback to the featured playwrights as their scripts go into rehearsals. During the festival weeks, MPF will also present a staged reading of a new play by Askari – the date and location of the reading are to be announced.