Call for Submissions: An Evening of Grand Guignol IV

Inspired by works presented in the early 20th century at the Theatre du Grand-Guignol in Paris, Taboo Theatre’s Festival of Fear (a.k.a. An Evening of Grand Guignol) has evolved from pre-existing translations of the original French shows to new plays written in this style.  In 2012, we accepted a proposal from local playwright Dan Bray for three new works, which we workshopped and presented as a full Evening of Grand Guignol event in November of that year. This show was so successful that we remounted one of the plays (Criminal Negligee, or An Evening In) for the 2013 Atlantic Fringe Festival and it won the award for best script.

This year, we are again accepting submissions for our annual Grand Guignol show.  Here are the requirements:

–          The plays can be either (a) completely original ; (b) new translations of 20th-century French Grand Guignol works; or (c) adaptations of other material that fits the requirements of this genre (such as the short stories of Edgar Allan Poe).

–          The theme chosen for the show is Envy, so the play should have this as an essential element.

–          The plays can be set in any time period but should not require elaborate sets, props or costumes.

–          Submissions may consist of one or more plays.

–          Completed first drafts are preferred but not absolutely necessary.

–          Please include with your submission any past writing and production credits.

–          Submissions will be accepted no later than March 15, 2014.

–          Chosen submissions will be announced by April 1, 2014.

The accepted plays will be workshopped during the late spring and early summer of 2014 (the exact dates will be determined by the number of shows accepted). After the workshopping process, final working drafts are to be completed no later than August 15, 2014. 2014’s Festival of Fear will then be rehearsed and mounted over the following two months, with exact details and dates to be announced at a later time.

A great deal of information on Grand Guignol is available at the website grandguignol.com, which also includes an example of a play in this style from the early 20th century. What we are looking for is a short play (20 minutes or less is ideal) which is a work of either horror, suspense or comedy. The show will consist of three plays, one of which will be a comedy (in keeping with the “hot and cold shower” format of traditional Grand Guignol events).  Our audiences expect  a certain amount of gore, so blood-spilling is encouraged as long as any special effects required are within our production budget. It is also important to note that although we are looking for horror plays, the plot should not depend on the existence of the supernatural (although there can be a reference to the supernatural).

Submissions can be sent to Taboo Theatre’s Artistic Director at tabootheatre@gmail.com.

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