Whidbey Playhouse Is Seeking Directors for its 2024-2025 Season!
Play Submission Guidelines
Who May Submit?
Whidbey Playhouse (WP) is a community theater that typically presents a balanced season of five plays and musicals that consist of comedies, dramas, mysteries, and other styles. A play’s cast size may be as few as two and as large as 40 or more! Generally, suggestions for mounting productions will come from those who are interested in directing, but the playhouse also invites members and volunteers to submit titles that they feel would be good candidates for the WP mainstage season. Whether you’re a potential director or a member, all criteria must be completed at the time of submission.
A director shall be considered qualified to direct if one or more of the following conditions are met by the submitter:
Previously directed or assistant directed a play or musical at WP.
Previously directed at a theater other than Whidbey Playhouse, and has been approved by the Board of Directors.
A prospective director with no directing experience must prepare a one-act play or major scene from any full-length play for presentation to the membership and Board for subsequent approval and any additional requirements.
Any or all of the above requirements may be waived by unanimous Board approval.
The right to direct is always subject to the approval of the Board.
Before you direct at WP, we urge you to -- at a minimum -- serve as a stage manager or assistant director on at least one production. We urge all would-be directors to get as much experience as to how WP functions and conducts its producing of plays and musicals. This would serve to enhance your experience as a director. Additionally, the better we know you...and the more we have seen of your skills...the more likely the possibility you will be offered to direct one of our productions.
If you are new to directing, you may want to consider “small cast shows” with minimal tech. Shows that are big in scope are best saved for when you are more experienced and know who to enlist in your major project.
What to Submit
You are invited to submit up to three plays you would like to direct to the Play Selection Committee (PSC). To give the PSC the greatest flexibility possible--and yourself the greatest chance--please consider submitting plays of different styles, cast sizes, periods, etc. Please note that WP only presents plays and musicals that are professionally licensed through a major publishing company.
Submitting a Musical
Because of their inherent scope and complications, first time directors should avoid submitting a large musical. If you have the experience and desire to mount a musical production, it is recommended that you have a musical director lined up at the time of your submission.
Each prospective director must submit scripts at their own expense to the committee. Scripts will be returned to the submitter after the selection process.
In addition to providing scripts, please complete and submit the online director/play submission form at the link below.
After filling out the online play submission form you will be contacted by the chair of the PSC to make arrangements for providing these materials.
All submissions will be reviewed by the PSC. The committee will choose a slate of plays and musicals (typically 10) for its annual Play Day in early February each year. Potential directors for the plays and musicals selected will be notified in the month of December if their entry has been chosen for a Play Day presentation and further guidance for presenting a short preview at that event will then be provided.
The Play Selection Committee (PSC) will:
Read the scripts, listen to cast recordings (if appropriate), view YouTube presentations, if available.
Look closely at the director’s needs and schedules.
Choose a balanced season of comedies, dramas and musicals that will be submitted to the Board of Directors.
In the process, committee members may contact you with questions or to set up an interview about your plays, scheduling, or other issues. Please make sure you fill out the forms as completely as possible. This is your chance to sell your show...and yourself, as the director.
Choosing a Script
Consider our Audiences! WP attracts a diverse audience. While our “core” patrons -- those who consistently buy season tickets and attend most plays -- is made up of seniors, we have begun to draw a younger, more diverse group that, depending on the play, might include families with younger children, tourists who are visiting Whidbey Island, and audiences who may not attend our theater regularly but will turn out for a specific play that appeals to their own interests.
An important question to keep in mind is, “Who will want to come and see this play?” Submit that quirky play that you love, but consider submitting plays with a broad appeal as well. We may do one off-beat show a year, but it is important to remember that WP survives on the success of its box office. We must craft a season that draws enough people to pay the bills.
Consider our Talent Pool
Actors come in all kinds of shapes, sizes, sexes, ages and hair color. The PSC tries hard to select a slate of plays which have plenty of roles for men and women, young and old, veteran and novice. Strive for balance of roles. If you submit a play with twenty male roles, you might consider submitting a play with twenty female roles as well. Think of the talent in the community and ask yourself, “Do we have the folks to cast this show?” Or, “do we have people that can tap dance?” Sometimes the right play will draw new people in. Again, the key is to offer the committee as many options as you can.
Submit Plays you Love
Sometimes, in an effort to submit “more choices” for the committee, directors will submit one play they love and then throw in two they’re not crazy about just to fill out the “three-play” guideline. What is true for auditioning for plays is doubly true for submitting to direct them...you wouldn’t put down that you were willing to take “any” role if it wasn’t true...don’t commit yourself to directing a play that doesn’t turn you on. If you are in the position of being “in love” with only one play, then be true to your vision and submit that one play. But remember, the committee may not love it the way you do, or it may not be a “fit” for the season. Giving them options of different plays that you would love to direct increases the likelihood that you will be directing next season.
Submitting a Play or Musical for Off-Season
Generally, the Whidbey Playhouse produces at least one OFF-season show for inclusion in its season. Typically, a children’s musical is presented during the summer months, but there are other possible options depending on the availability of time on the main production calendar. An off-season production may be limited to one weekend or possibly two. Interested directors should apply using the same procedure as outlined.
If you have any questions or need further information, please email the Playhouse at firstname.lastname@example.org and someone from the Play Selection Committee will contact you.