Producer Arielle Tepper has announced plans to launch the Summer Performance Festival for Emerging Writers, to run July 5-Aug. 1 at Theater Row on W. 42nd Street. Tepper plans to present 16 to 24 musicals and plays in five venues along the block between Ninth and Tenth Avenues. The festival will cover production costs of all the shows, making it a much cushier environment for artists than, say, the New York International Fringe Festival, in which participants pay a nonrefundable $500 fee and pay for all aspects of mounting the show, save renting a space.
Additionally, the festival will hold no rights to the shows at any times.
Tepper told Variety she hoped the festival would provide young producers with needed experience, as well as giving seasoned producers a new place to shop for properties.
Submissions should be postmarked by April 9 and sent to: SPF, 1501 Broadway, Suite 1301, NYC 10036. The website address is www.spfnyc.com. There is no entry fee. Submissions can not have had a previous full production.
Scripts can be submitted by agents and representatives, but also by individual playwrights, making the festival one of the few in the country that cater to the writer without professional connections. (Another is the O'Neill Playwrights Center, which, in a controversial move last year, nearly ended its policy of accepted unsolicted manuscripts.) Only the first 500 texts sent by unrepresented writers will be entertained for production. Each write can submit only one entry. All rights to the play must be currently available. Tepper hopes to announce the fest line-up by May 1.