In light of the current health crisis, the 12th annual August Wilson Monologue Competition will be held online May 2–3. The event was originally scheduled as an in-person ceremony for May 4.
The 28 student finalists will spend the first day gathering for introductions from competition co-founders Kenny Leon and Todd Kreidler, followed by a series of online master classes with industry professionals. The May 3 session will feature a college- and career choice–focused panel with competition alumni, followed by a panel discussion with actor Russell Hornsby, Tony-nominated costume designer and August Wilson's widow Constanza Romero, actor Roslyn Ruff, and Jujamcyn Theaters Senior Vice President Jack Viertel. The day concludes with finalists performing their prepared monologues for the group, hosted by Hornsby and Ruff. This year's edition of the event will dispense with judgments and winners in favor of celebrating the work of all finalists.
Founded in 2007, the competition works to expose new generations to the work of the Pulitzer and Tony-winning playwright. High school students nationwide are invited to explore Wilson's ten-play Century Cycle and receive coaching from teaching artists as they prepare monologues for local, citywide, and national competitions.
A documentary about the competition, Giving Voice, screened at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, winning the Audience Choice Award.
The awards are co-presented by Kenny Leon's True Colors Theatre Company and Jujamcyn Theaters.