2020 Maine Playwrights Festival
in Portland – NEW dates TBA

The Maine Playwrights Festival is now in its 19th year of nurturing the development of new scripts by Maine writers; from submission through staged readings, rewrites, and culminating in a series of public performances. The 2020 Festival is comprised of two weekends of performances at the Studio Theater at Portland Stage (25 Forest Avenue) in Portland.
Public events as part of the 2020 festival include:

Mr. Puddles Last Adventure by Thomas Spurr

Featured plays: two weekends of fully staged performances of short plays (8-30 minutes in length) written by playwrights Brent Askari, Carolyn Gage, Alexa Gallant, Hollie Pryor, Stowell Watters, and Nolan Ellsworth & Shannon Wade.  Each selected script will be performed on every show night during the festival.  The featured plays will be performed at the Studio Theater at Portland Stage (25 Forest Avenue).
Semi-finalist readings: staged readings of short plays by playwrights Eddie Adelman, Kerri Becker, Gordon LePage, and Jule Selbo, and Arthur Boatin & Elaine Ford. Date and location TBA.
24-Hour Theatre Project: actors and playwrights from Acorn Productions create five world-premiere plays sharing the same prompts over the course f 24 hours. Performed at the Studio Theater at Portland Stage (25 Forest Avenue).
Playwright-in-residence reading: a staged-reading of work from 2020 Playwright-in-residence John Cariani. Date and location TBA.
High School Playwriting Project: showcase presentation of short plays written by students from Morse and Gorham high schools who took part in this year’s MPF High School Playwriting workshops. Performed at the Studio Theater at Portland Stage (25 Forest Avenue).

2020 Featured Plays

Selections for the 2020 Festival have been announced!

by Brent Askari
Is Portland’s restaurant scene a vibrant enough topic to distract three wealthy Mainers from the events happening around them?

by Nolan Ellsworth & Shannon Wade
The apocalypse is a cold one, but four strange companions search for good luck in the darkness.

by Carolyn Gage
Actress Eva LeGallienne faces the press for the first time after the fire that almost killed her and the scandal of her girlfriend’s divorce.

by Alexa Gallant
Jane Grey, the nine day queen of England, tries to find her way against the her own objectification and impending tragedy.

by Hollie Pryor
Two daughters help their mother to relive an important moment of her past; but how far are they willing to go to do so?

by Stowell Watters
A group of friends returns to Long Lake to reconnect and skip stones, but soon run into harrowing trials both emotional and intergalactic.

The six selected plays will be performed at the Studio Theater at Portland Stage (25A Forest Avenue) in Portland.

MPF Playwright in Residence

John Cariani

Maine Playwrights Festival’s 2020 Playwright in residence is John Cariani.

John Cariani is an actor and a playwright. As a writer, he is best known for his first play, Almost, Maine, which premiered at Portland Stage Company in 2004 and opened Off-Broadway in 2006. It has since become one of the most frequently produced plays in the United States and has been translated into nearly twenty languages. His other plays include cul-de-sac (Transport Group), Last Gas (Portland Stage Company, Geva Theater Center), and LOVE/SICK (Portland Stage Company, Hartford TheaterWorks). As an actor, he has appeared on Broadway and Off Broadway, at regional theaters across the country, and in several films and television shows. He’s been nominated for a Tony Award and has done movies with Robert De Niro, Christopher Walken, and Ed Asner. Originally from Presque Isle, Maine, John is a graduate of Amherst College. He lives in New York City.

As Playwright in Residence for MPF 2020, Cariani 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 John’s work – the date and location of the reading are to be announced.

Thanks to our MPF 2020 sponsors.

Bath Savings
Fore River Brewing
Mechanics Hall