Combat COVID-19 with the Power of the Pen

Premiere Stages is hosting a playwriting competition sponsored by generous long time donors W. John Bauer and Nancy Boucher

Campus Life > Combat COVID-19 with the Power of the Pen
Combat COVID-19 with the Power of the Pen
Premiere Stages is hosting an opportunity for the community to use creativity to combat this time of uncertainty.
Brandon Gervais, Editor

Premiere Stages will be offering The Premiere Senior Endeavor Awards, a playwriting competition for New Jersey residents, in hopes to keep artists and lovers of the stage and writing engaged creatively, and to award their hard work during this unexplored time.

This playwriting competition is targeted toward New Jersey Residents, and will be offering cash rewards and extended benefits for playwrites in three categories: rising high school seniors, senior citizens living in residential communities and seniors enrolled at Kean University.

Premiere Stages will be accepting one-act plays inspired by, or in response to, the challenges of the COVID-19 situation. The submitted plays can be autobiographical or fictional, as well as having direct or indirect relation to COVID-19. Plays must be unpublished and unproduced. Selected plays will be afforded professional readings for the public in October 2020.

"The College Senior Endeavor Award will provide $1000 to a Kean University senior who is graduating from Kean in May of 2020. The winning college senior will also receive a professional reading of the play and will be extended the offer of a paid six-month internship in the Premiere Stages Literary Office," said Christina Hoffman, Premiere Stages, director of marketing and audience development. 

Kean seniors slated for graduation in Spring 2020 are highly encouraged to participate in this competition to win the cash prize, as well as the paid internship opportunity.

Students who would like to spread the word to high school students or NJ senior citizens should share the information about the High School Senior Endeavor Award and the NJ Senior Endeavor Award.

The High School Senior Endeavor Award will award $1000 to a high school senior who will be completing their junior year of high school in May or June of 2020. The winning submission will receive a professional reading of their play and a letter of recommendation that can be used for college applications in the fall.

The NJ Senior Endeavor Award awards $1000 to a senior citizen who currently resides in a New Jersey senior living community (assisted living or independent living). In addition to a professional reading of the winning submission, Premiere Stages will also award a fully sponsored Premiere Stages Legacy Residency for those seniors who reside in the community where the winning writer lives. Legacy Residencies are part of the Premiere Play Factory, and provide opportunities to seniors to partner with professional playwrights to document, share and celebrate their legacies with their peers and families through a showcase of their work, performed by professional actors.

Premiere Stages works with Kean University to provide the Kean community with performances that help to educate students on local history as well as explore other cultures.

Submissions will open June 1 through August 1, 2020. The three winners will be selected by September 1. All three winners will receive a professional cast, director and dramaturg for developmental readings between October 9-11, 2020 on the Kean main campus.

Honorable mentions will receive $100 awards.

For more information and questions on this competitions, visit the Premiere Stages website or email

about the author

Brandon Gervais, Editor

Brandon Gervais is a junior English education double major. Brandon works as an Editor for The Cougar’s Byte and originally joined the staff as a Staff Writer in November 2017. He is a part of the Leadership Institute as a Gold leader and has worked as a New Student Orientation Leader. In his free time, he is a performer for a world class independent competitive color guard team and coaches the Union High School Color Guard.