The Clauder Competition is a playwriting award hosted by Portland Stage and open to all New England playwrights.

Lukis Crowell in READ TO ME by Brendan Pelsue. Photo by Mical Hutson.

Submissions for the 2022 Clauder Competition for New England Playwrights opened June 1st, 2021 and will remain open through March 31st, 2022. For more information on how to submit, visit our Script Submissions page.

Four Decades of Clauder

New England’s most prestigious playwriting award, the Clauder Competition was created in 1981 by Jeb Brooks, who continues to underwrite the program. The Clauder Competition celebrates the distinctive voices of our region’s playwrights and brings their work to the attention of the greater theatrical community. Portland Stage started hosting readings and productions of the winning plays in 1998, and has been administering the Clauder Competition since 2001, where it has remained for over two decades!

A Supportive Launchpad

The Clauder Competition identifies exciting new works by New England playwrights and ensures their successful launch through readings and productions at Portland Stage. These readings provide exposure, encouragement and critical feedback to promising playwrights who typically receive little more than a return postcard for material they send to theaters and producers.

Clauder Success Stories

Past winners or finalists who have launched successful playwriting careers include: Callie Kimball, Brenda Withers, Tom Coash, Adam Bock, Laura Harrington, Elizabeth Egloff, Bridget Carpenter, Melinda Lopez, Liz Duffy Adams, William Donnelly, Kim Rosenstock, and Pulitzer Prize-winners Quiara Alegria Hudes and Paula Vogel.

2012 Clauder Winner, Veils by Tom Coash was nominated for American Theatre Critics Association’s New Play Award. Read more about the play and the award here.

Clauder Prizes

Clauder Grand Prize: a $3,000 cash award, and a workshop at Portland Stage, followed by a full scale production on our Mainstage or in our Studio Theater the following season.

Gold Prizes: $1,500 cash awards each, plus a workshop at Portland Stage.

Additional recognition will be awarded to the best play from each of the six New England states.

 

2020 Clauder Winners

The 2020 Clauder Grand Prize winner
Last Ship to Proxima Centauri by Greg Lam

The 2020 Gold Prize winners
Rx Machina by Caity Shea-Violette
In His Hands by Benjamin Benne

State Winners
Connecticut: In His Hands by Benjamin Benne
Maine: Death Wings by Bess Welden
Massachusetts: Last Ship to Proxima Centauri by Greg Lam
New Hampshire: Awful People Pray by Leila Teitelman
Rhode Island: Radical by Deborah Salem Smith and Charlie Thurston
Vermont: Fixed Point by Mary Beth McNulty

Clauder Through the Years

LAST SHIP TO PROXIMA CENTAURI (2022)

Clauder | Mainstage | World Premiere

IN HIS HANDS

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

THE LAST SHIP TO PROXIMA CENTAURI (2021)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

Rx MACHINA

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

READ TO ME (2019)

Clauder | Mainstage | World Premiere

THE QUEEN OF SAD MISCHANCE

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

READ TO ME (LFU 2019)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

THE BONE GIRLS

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

STRING AROUND MY FINGER (2017)

Clauder | Mainstage | World Premiere

SOFONISBA

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

STRING AROUND MY FINGER (2016)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

DYING TO KNOW

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

VEILS (2014)

Clauder | Mainstage | World Premiere

LAKE UNTERSEE

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

THE VIKINGS OF MUNJOY HILL

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

VEILS (2013)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

THE CENTER OF GRAVITY (2011)

Mainstage | World Premiere | Clauder

ARIADNE ON THE ISLAND

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

THE CENTER OF GRAVITY (2010)

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

TIGERS BE STILL

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

MAGNETIC NORTH (2008)

Mainstage | World Premiere | Clauder

MAGNETIC NORTH (2007)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

THE OWL GIRL

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

LONGFELLOW: A LIFE IN WORDS (2007)

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

YEMAYA’S BELLY (2005)

Clauder | Mainstage | World Premiere

WONDERLAND

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

REMUDA

Little Festival of the Unexpected | Clauder

YEMAYA’S BELLY (2004)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

HALLOWED GROUND (2002)

Mainstage | World Premiere | Clauder

HALLOWED GROUND (2000)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected

MANIFEST (1999)

Clauder | Mainstage | World Premiere

MANIFEST (1998)

Clauder | Little Festival of the Unexpected