Young Playwrights for Change

OCT is proud to host the Oregon chapter of Young Playwrights for Change, a national playwrighting competition for middle-schoolers.



Kaiser Permanente’s Educational Theatre Program in collaboration with Oregon Children’s Theatre proudly present

Young Playwrights for Change
Empathy in Action: Combating Bullying


How do you address bullying in your school or community? How do you help others who are being bullied? Young Playwrights for Change is challenging young playwrights to explore those questions as this year’s topic.

About Young Playwrights for Change

Oregon Children’s Theatre’s playwriting contest for middle school students returns for its fourth year. 6th to 8th graders are invited to submit original, 10-minute plays on a featured topic selected by a national committee. The 2016-17 topic is “Empathy in Action: Combating Bullying.” 

From submissions received, Oregon Children’s Theatre (OCT) will select six finalists’ scripts to be featured in a staged reading on May 21, 2017. One winning script will be submitted to the national Young Playwrights for Change national competition, hosted by Theatre for Young Audiences USA and the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, for a chance to win a trip to San Francisco California. More information about Young Playwrights for Change can be found at:

Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three scripts. 

To submit your writing, download an application packet here.

Suffering from writer’s block or new to playwriting? Our website also has playwriting resources and tips and tricks to help you get started. 

Contact Chrissy Sukboriboon at for more information. 

Important Dates

Mail submissions, a completed cover sheet, and a signed parent/guardian consent form to Oregon Children’s Theatre, 1939 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland, OR 97232. Deadline for submissions is January 18, 2017.

December-January 2017: In class workshops will be offered to 6th-8th grade classes .

January 18, 2017: Final revised scripts due to Oregon Children’s Theatre.

May 21, 2017: Staged reading. All six finalists’ plays will be presented at the reading.  

Contest Rules

  • Plays must address the competition topic, “Empathy in Action: Combating Bullying.”
  • Students must have permission from a parent or guardian to enter the contest. A signed parent consent form must be included with all submissions. 
  • Plays must be the original work of the author. Scripts may not be co-authored. 
  • Themes and content must be appropriate for middle school aged audiences. Scripts containing profanity or inappropriate content are not eligible. 
  • Authors must be in 6th to 8th grade and live in Oregon or Washington.
  • Completed scripts must be no longer than 10 minutes when read aloud. 
  • Scripts may have up to, but no more than 6, characters. 
  • Submit two typed copies of your play. Scripts will not be returned—be sure to keep a copy for yourself!
  • Submissions must be accompanied by Young Playwrights for Change Cover Page and the signed parent consent form. 
  • Scripts must be in standard American format. Check the creative and style guidelines if you have questions about how to do this. 
  • Scripts must be typed with page numbers.
  • Other than the cover page, do not include your name on any other page of your script. 
  • Oregon Children’s Theatre reserves the right to change any contest rule.
  • Oregon Children’s Theatre reserves the right to accept or reject any play submitted to the contest for any reason. 
  • No copies of submissions will be returned. 

Selection Process

Submissions will be read and scored by a committee of OCT Young Professionals, local educators, and OCT staff. Each eligible script will be read by the committee. 

6th-8th Grade Teachers! 

We are pleased to offer FREE workshops to help your students delve into the topic of bullying, and build foundational playwriting skills! Workshops are typically offered as 5 1-hour sessions, but can be adjusted based on classroom needs. If you are interested in a workshop for your students, please contact us at Chrissy Sukboriboon at

Due to demand, preference will be given to classes where the teacher will make this a graded assignment. Participation in a workshop is not required to submit a play.


Visit the Theatre for Young Audiences USA website

Download Young Playwrights for Change scripts!

Questions about OCT's Young Playwrights for Change program? Contact us!