Goshen College Peace Play contest still accepting submissions

Derek Koch ’08 and Tara Hershberger ’08 perform in the 2006 Peace Play production of “Baby Boom,” by Lia Romeo.

The Goshen College Theater Department once again is hosting a Peace Play contest, and submissions will continue to be accepted until Dec. 31. This biennial one-of-a-kind Peace Play contest challenges playwrights around the world to tell a story about peace in a one-act play.

Typically, 50-75 submissions of new, un-produced one-act plays are received in every two-year cycle of the contest. Though playwrights are required to explore a contemporary peace theme within their plays, the term peace is broadly interpreted. In fact, it is the diversity of play submissions that is one of the contest’s greatest strengths, said Doug Liechty Caskey, professor of theater and theater department chair.

“Of those who submit scripts to the contest, by far the largest percentage of playwrights have never heard of Goshen College except through this contest,” said Caskey. “In fact, we’ve heard from some that we are the only playwriting contest devoted solely to the theme of peace that also offers a cash prize to the winners.”

The selection panel, made up of Goshen College faculty members, will read the submissions over the next months and will notify the first- and second-place winners by June 30, 2012. The winning play will be produced during the October 2012 Homecoming Weekend. In addition, the first-place winner will receive a $500 prize and will be provided with room and board to attend rehearsals and the production of his or her play. The second-place winner will receive a $100 prize.

“One of the fascinating aspects of this contest and the resultant wide variety of information and beliefs contained within the plays is that it challenges those of us who might otherwise take GC’s core value of ‘compassionate peacemaking’ for granted,” said Caskey. “We’re not looking for scripts that simply placate our collective beliefs, but rather scripts that challenge and agitate us to continue thinking about a changing world that so dearly longs for peaceful coexistence.”

Past Peace Play productions include “Here to Serve You,” by Barbara Lindsay, “Baby Boom,” by Lia Romeo and “Enough,” by P. Montley.

Learn more about how to submit to the Peace Play contest.

While the contest was initially created through a generous donor gift in 1982, it now needs additional support. The Goshen College Peace Play Contest has taken on a life of its own and continues to give GC a presence on the national creative scene and provides students with unique learning opportunities. Those interested in helping to keep the contest viable into the future should contact the GC Development Office at (574) 535-7558 or (800) 348-7422, go online at www.goshen.edu/give or email Caskey at douglc@goshen.edu.

Editors: For more information about this release, to arrange an interview or request a photo, contact Goshen College Acting News Bureau Coordinator Alysha Bergey Landis at (574) 535-7762 or alyshabl@goshen.edu.