Midwinter Madness Short Play Festival

Midwinter Madness Festival poster
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Summary Info Festival StoryFestival EventsOther SourcesPractical Info

Country and Region United StatesNew York
Type of Festival Drama
Location of Festival New York, New York, USA
Festival Contact Information

John Chatterton, Executive Producer
Email: john.chatterton@gmail.com

Festival Description

Midwinter Madness is a festival of new one-act plays that takes place at the Roy Arias Studios in Times Square. The play subjects are open to any all subject matters, including musicals. Productions are minimal — rehearsal cubes, a table or two, some chairs and a few props. Following the festival there will be a juried award ceremony, with cash awards for the most popular plays. Join the Midwinter Madness in February!

Festival Dates February 4 - 24, 2013

Festival Story:

John Chatterton started Midwinter Madness in 2011, in response to growing interest in the short-play format through such ongoing events as his own Short Play Lab and Short Subjects. “It was a pretty barebones festival,” said Chatterton. “Twenty-seven shows in one 50-seat theatre, no greenroom, no room for the piano backstage - but we got through it and it was a lot of fun for everyone. And people showed up to see the shows!” (This year’s Midwinter Madness plans to have 2 theatres plus a greenroom, for as many as 50 shows.)

John Chatterton created the MITF (Midtown International Theatre Festival) in 2000, a Midtown alternative to other theatre festivals, as a way to present the finest off-off Broadway talent in convenience, comfort, and safety. The MITF's artistic emphasis is on the script itself, and therefore the Festival focuses on minimal production values. If anything, the Midwinter Madness Short Play Festival, and Mr. Chatterton's other showcases for short plays, take the theme of minimalism even further. As he puts it, "The shorter the plays, the more plays we have in one space, so the less space we have for each one. We learn to share."


Festival Events:

Performances 2013:
  • A BABY’S ARM HOLDING, AN APPLE by Mandi Riggi (45 min.). Two souls long for lost love as they await their fate in the afterlife.
  • A CREDIT TO HIS RACE, by Steve Gold (60 min.). A tale of racism, forbidden love, and Mussolini based on the life of Ernest Just, a pioneer black scientist.
  • ADELE’S HEART, by Giapiero Rappa & Paula Wing (75 min.). Lucas and Adele struggle to survive during a war.
  • BRIDGE TO BARAKA, by Yvette Heyliger (30 min.). Emboldened by an unlikely 1960s movement, Yvette X stakes her claim as a female dramatist coming of age during the ongoing fight for parity in the American Theatre.
  • CHILD OF FAITH, Written & directed by Christopher Tedrick; starring Kayla Wickes, Jason Faust, & Simone Zvi (60 min.). The fight for survival in a post-revolution world.
  • FELDMAN & SONS, by Lawrence Apple (60 min.) A fateful decision confronts a struggling family clothing company and its aging leader.
  • FORCE REDEMPTION, by Shawn Belpanno (60 min.). Star Wars parody of a high adventure on a space station.
  • FRIENDLY, Written & directed by Mike Durell (60 min.). Starring Alexandra Hellquist, Jenny Paul, Gary Lizardo, John Felidi, & Mike Durell. Two young women making their way in the big city fall into a mysterious plot.
  • ET ME A GUY, by Israela Margalit (45 min.). Comedy about women needing a guy.
  • LIFE AS A POMEGRANATE, by Dawna J. Wightman; directed by Ginette Mohr; sound composition by David Mesiha (60 min.). One-woman comedy about a young woman with kids and a bad marriage in a redneck Canadian town.
  • LINOLEUM’S HARD, by Joanne DeSimone, directed by Jay Michaels; starring Sara Minisquero, Laura Aristovulos, Gaby Mook & Abigail Formas, stage managed by Joanna Barbaro and Andrew Liebowitz (60 min.). Vicki & Emily dream of love and fame… but that might not be the hand they’re dealt.
  • LIVING ARRANGEMENTS, by Laura Pederson, directed by Ludovica Villar-Hauser (45 min.). When their apartment lease conflicts with their marriage contract Charlie and Lois get creative.
  • MACHO MOMENTS, by Joseph P. Krawczyk (45 min.). Two war veterans adjust to civilian life.
  • NEWLYWED HOSTAGE PARTY, by Adam Pitzler (45 min.). Rocky Horror Show parody about a couple going home to visit divorced Dad, when videogame-loving pal and criminal niece stop by.
  • NEXT STOP, ANYWHERE, by Yasmine Lever (60 min.). Father and daughter have a reunion as he tries to get sober.
  • NOBODY BUT SOMEBODY, by Davon Clark (45 min.). A modern-day musical talking about civil rights events of the past, Claudette Colvin, Rosa Parks, Freedom Riders, etc.
  • NOBODY’S BONES, by Heather McCuen (30 min.). Emma awakens to find the unlikely hitman sent to kill her family.
  • OLD MAN RIVER_, by Corey Pajka, directed by Guil Fisher (45 min.). A young man with the eyes of the world on him, and a young woman who’s been let down by human nature, cross paths in a New York bar discovering they weren’t as alone as they thought.
  • PRETTY LITTLE MOUTH, by Marcus Yi (60 min.). A former dominatrix is blackmailed into having an affair by her music student.
  • QUICK BRIGHT THINGS IN CLIP ON TIES, by Colleen Scriven (45 min.).
  • RADICAL, by Nelson Diaz-Marcano (60 min.). September 11, 1973 Chile. An American missionary and a wounded young man are trapped in a basement where they are met by an armed cynical idealist while society crumbles during one of the most devastating coups in Latin american history.
  • RADIO MARA MARA, by Libby Emmons, directed by Ali Ayala; starring Christopher Burris and Zoe Metcalfe-Klaw (45 min.). In an abandoned radio station in the hills around a bombed-out capital city, the DJ and the Archivist come to terms with the world that’s left them behind.
  • RED FLOWERS IN THE SNOW, by Lavinia Roberts, directed by Irene Kapustina; starring Joey Lozada, Lucie Pohl, & Mike Amato (45 min.). Three squatters try to take care of themselves when no one else cares.
  • SHOOTING POOL WITH A ROPE, by Lynn-Steven Johanson (45 min.). A meeting between an old man and a teenage boy forever changes each of their lives.
  • THAT WOMAN’S CHILD, by Rebekah L. Pierce (30 min.). A woman running a hat store runs into her father’s wife who hated her mother for having an affair and child with her husband.
  • THE LIFEGUARD, by Tony Manzo (60 min.) Frank and nephew Bobby try to keep Larry from making a big mistake in marrying a “Black Widow” type in a Fla. nursing home.
  • THE LIGHT OF LIFE_, by William Packard, directed by Gregory Higgins (60 min.) A young actress endures a horror of an audition to get a lead on a Broadway show.
  • THE PRANKSMITH, by Anthony Guerino (45 min.) A man must choose between a friend he cares about and a joke he loves.
  • THE SUPREME BEINGS, by Michael Horn (30 min.) Mister and Missus God compare notes.
  • THE TOUPEE, by Tom Dunn (60 min.) When her husband dies in the arms of a prostitute, the wife makes a startling proposition.
  • THE TRAINER by S. Karlan (60 min.) The increasing submission of a solitary man to his personal trainer and its attendant consequences.
  • TRUE ARTISTS, by Gregory Nissen (45 min.) Was Beethoven a revolutionary? See slices of his life in early 19th-century Germany. Including excerpts from his music.
  • WAITING ROOM, by Brian-Paul Mendoza (60 min.) Two people in a waiting room talk about crime, punishment, God, etc.
  • WHAT ARE FRIENDS FOR? by Bill Beasley (30 min.) Two male friends deal with one of them being dumped by a supermodel.
  • WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO HENRY?, by Scott Rogowsky (45 min.) An unorthodox meditation on Orthodox Judaism, as explored by three old friends who reunite in Israel for the wedding of an estranged classmate.
  • WHO KNEW?, by Russ Gerard Ritirato (60 min.) A standup comic ruminates. Director - Rick Imberman
  • WICCANS IN THE ‘HOOD, by Michelle T. Johnson (60 min.). Friends conducting rituals in an urban cemetery are mistakenly taken for being Wiccans by a black neighbor who stumbles upon them. Tix: http://www.smarttix.com/show.aspx?showcode=WIC


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Practical Info:

Play submissions 2013:
  • Seeking new one-act plays for the Third Annual Midwinter Madness Short Play Festival, happening in February 2013 at the Stage 2 and Stage 4 Theaters in the Roy Arias Studios in Times Square: Dates for the Festival are February 4 - 24, 2013.
    • We are looking to expand on last year’s Festival, with 2 great theaters and longer plays.
    • Plays should run 30-45 minutes or 45-60 minutes. Better short than long. The plays will be timed at tech and cannot go over.
    • Scripts should be submitted in standard playscript format. Any subject matter okay, including musicals.
    • The Festival will not combine shorter plays to make full programs.
    • All plays must be off-book. There will be no staged readings.
    • Production requirements must be minimal: rehearsal cubes, a table or two, some chairs (all provided by the Festival), and your own props and costumes, which you must bring with you and take home for every performance.
    • Tickets will be $14-17. There are no fees. The Festival takes the door.
    • Festival participants may see their own and other shows for free, seating permitting. These comps may not be transferred to anyone else. Otherwise, there are no comps.
    • Shows must be non-Equity. No showcases or Equity waivers, please! The Festival will provide a press agent, venue manager, lighting designer, and box-office manager. You must provide your own board op. (The Festival has a list of available qualified technical staff from which you may draw. They are competent and reasonably priced.)
    • While the Festival provides the venue and staff, you must provide the production. Roy Arias Studios may offer discounts on rehearsal space, at its own discretion.
    • There will be a tech rehearsal running 2.5 times the running time of your show, during business hours Mon. thru Fri.
    • All performances will take place from 6 pm to 11 pm weekdays or 11 am to 11 pm weekends.
    • Each show will receive at least 3 performances, probably all in the same week. Shows that sell the most tickets in advance may receive more performances.
    • The Festival will provide a program “wrapper”: you must provide a program specific to your show, and insert it into the wrapper for distribution to your patrons.
    • There will be a juried award ceremony after the Festival, with cash awards for the most popular plays.
    • 12 pt Times Roman; character names in the middle on their own line; line spaces between speeches and stage directions; indented stage directions; 1” margins all around.
  • John Chatterton has presented a lot of Festivals, and he has a special interest in short plays. They’re an easy, cheap, and fun way to see your work on its feet. This year John is being assisted by Tom Thornton of Times Square Playwrights. He will help pick the plays so please send your submissions to him. To submit a script, send it as an attachment in .doc or .pdf format to tt91457@yahoo.com. Any questions, don’t hesitate to shoot Tom an E-mail!


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