Women’s Voices Festival 2021

Womens Plays Final White

Announcing our 2nd Annual Women’s Voices Play Festival celebrating new plays by Women+ playwrights!  After the success of the first festival and subsequent Mini-Fests featuring 15 new plays by women+ playwrights in 2020, this uplifting project returns for a second round of submissions.



Playwright Eligibility

Seeking work from emerging and established women+ playwrights.

Festival Performance dates:

August 11-15, 2021
Orlando, FL

Festival Awards:

Winner: $500 and consideration for a full production

All finalists will receive a $100 usage fee



Interested playwrights are encouraged to read Mad Cow Theatre’s mission statement and look at our production history to get an idea of the type of work we produce.  Mad Cow Theatre will only consider submissions that meet the following criteria:


  • Electronic script submissions (PDF)- emailed to: newplays@madcowtheatre.com with the subject line: Submission & Name of Playwright
  • In the body of the email include:  
    • Script Name, 
    • Playwright Name, 
    • Playwright Email, 
    • Playwright Telephone Number, 
    • Playwright Postal Address, 
  • Plays must be unproduced and unpublished with limited development. 
  •  Plays must be full length (60 minutes+) and can be single or multiple acts. No musicals.
  • Plays must use no more than 6 actors. 
  • Submissions must include a character breakdown and synopsis
  • One submission per playwright.
  • Playwright must identify as woman+
  • Any plays that do not follow these requirements will not be considered.


Questions? Email newplays@madcowtheatre.com with the subject line “Question”

  • Up to 3 finalists will be chosen to participate in the Women’s Voices Festival online and up to 10 semi-finalists will receive honorable mentions leading up to the festival with NPX recommendations and social media shoutouts.
  • Finalists will be selected by a panel of readers and notified by Mad Cow Theatre no later than the June 30 announcement
    • Readers will be public knowledge and bios/headshots released on social media
  • We regret that individual feedback will not be possible and only finalists/semi-finalists will be contacted. 
  • Each finalist will receive the following: a professional director, dramaturg and cast, 13 rehearsal hours including a staged reading, and facilitated post-show talkback.
  • Playwrights are required to participate in the rehearsal process and attend the readings and talkbacks for their play in a virtual setting.  
  • Winner of festival will receive $500 and consideration for a full production
  • All finalists will receive a $100 script usage fee
  • No other royalties or payments will be issued. If a full production moves forward, a contract will be negotiated for full production. The playwright holds all rights to their material.
  • Submissions will be capped after the first 200 scripts are received.
  • The winner will be announced the week following the festival

In an effort to be transparent about the selection process, here is what happens once a script is submitted. 


  1. The scripts are logged and receipt acknowledged via email
  2. The script is randomly assigned to a reader
    • The reader is required to review at minimum 20 pages and is provided a form to make recommendations and comments ranging from info on the characters in the play to information about the central plot. Each form has a recommendation to give the play a Yes, Maybe, & No recommendation to be produced.
      • If a play receives a Yes or a Maybe, it will be assigned to a second reader. Any play that receives a No recommendation will be held for a second review if time permits.
    • Readers are not actively encouraged to research the playwrights, but the names are not removed from scripts
    • Readers are selected from a pool of MCT artists as well as from an application process open to artists nationwide. The application is new to the 2021 process and MCT seeks to have 50% of readers selected from the application process
  3. As final recommendations are received, MCT staff will compile a final list of YES plays. Playwrights will be researched fully, the content of the play will be reviewed, scripts will be read once more and a final list of 10 plays will be selected based on the enthusiasm from the readers and MCT staff. We will be intentional in this process and if the list of plays does not include at least 50% BIPOC playwrights, MCT will pause the process and review additional submissions. If the submissions received do not appear to represent a diverse community, we will do additional work to outreach and request further play submissions.
  4. After we are satisfied with the submission and review process, we will select 3 plays collectively to produce as part of the festival. The remaining 7 plays will receive honorable mentions on social media and recommendations on the New Play Exchange site if they are posted there.