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CONTEMPORARY THEATRE READINGS (article first published : 2006-10-16)

The Performing Arts Network of South Africa (PANSA) has announced that the closing date for its highly successful festivals of contemporary theatre readings 2006/7 with funding from the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF) has now been extended to October 31.

The NLDTF/PANSA Festivals of Contemporary Theatre Readings will take place in three cities in early 2007, dates still to be finalised. The festival retains the same genres as last year i.e. Contemporary South African Drama; Contemporary South African Comedy/Satirical Drama; One- and Two-hander plays. The winning works from the first two festivals will be invited to the final event as well.

There is substantial prize money available for each festival and - various NLDTF/PANSA awards will be presented. With the aid of the NLDTF grant, PANSA's festivals can again provide platforms to encourage new, excellent theatre. Recent successes include full-scale productions of all three winners of the 2005 festivals at this year's National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, as well as staged readings of Peter Krummeck's iVirgin Boy and Hans Pienaar's Madiba Street at the Oval House Festival in London in May. All three of Mike van Graan's plays that won various category awards at last year's festivals have had productions at several theatres around the country as well as in London and Holland and also featured on the fringe in Grahamstown.

PANSA also aims to introduce a mentorship programme to assist emerging writers in the form of workshops and discussion sessions.

PANSA is calling for scripts in three categories: Contemporary South African drama; Contemporary South African comedy and satirical drama, and one- and two-hander plays.

Three panels of judges will select the best scripts for participation in the three festivals. Each of the selected scripts will be given a substantial subsidy to fund rehearsals, actors' and directors' fees, etc. The festivals are open to writers who are South African citizens.

The basic criteria for participation are that the work must be an original work that has not been published or performed before. PANSA would have first option on producing and publishing the play (selected works may be published in a collection). Plays should be between 70 minutes and 90 minutes long to ensure the possibility of a full-scale professional production. There should be a maximum of eight actors (does not apply to one-or two-hander plays) and English should be the primary language of the play.

Scripts must be typed, loose-leaf and have all pages numbered. Applicants must also complete an application form which can be obtained from the PANSA offices below or can be sent to you via e-mail or fax. It must be returned with the script by no later than October 31.

Submissions can be sent or delivered to the three provincial offices: In KZN, the details are - PANSA KZN: 33 Vause Road, Berea, 4001, or post to PO Box 30547, Mayville, 4058. Contact details are: phone 031 309 2236 or 083 364 7195 and email kzn@pansa.org.za

Please note: Handwritten, faxed or e-mailed submissions and those that exceed the requirements above, or those that arrive later than October 31, will not be accepted. Submissions will not be returned and only successful applicants will be informed. The judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

All enquiries to 011 492 3211 or gauteng@pansa.org.za




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