static image of poster reads: Nuevas Voces, a 10-minute play festival & contest, founded by Jim Blair

Founded in Fall 2017 by alumnus and former Northeastern professor Jim Blair to create a platform for new playwrights at Northeastern Illinois University, Nuevas Voces is a thrilling launch point for new work from Northeastern and its vibrant community Featuring multiple prize-winning short plays selected from an extensive competition, Nuevas Voces reveals the complexity of our human experience through the many lenses that make up Northeastern.

Jim Blair also teaches a playwriting workshop each spring through Northeastern's Office of Community & Professional Education.

8th Annual Playwriting Contest for the Fall 2024 Nuevas Voces Festival

**EXTENDED!!** Submission Deadline: April 15, 2024
Winners Announced: May 1, 2024

Entry Categories

  • Current high school students in Illinois
  • Current NEIU or other college students in Illinois, ages 17-28 (full- or part-time)
  • NEIU and the greater community, age 29+. Must be an Illinois resident.

Sign Up

  • A $15 sign-up fee will be required unless you are enrolled in Jim Blair's non-credit Playwriting Workshop, or enrolled in the Department of Communication, Media and Theatre's Playwriting course.

Submission Information

Submission Requirements

  • Your submission will be accepted only through this Google Form.
  • Your play submission must include a cover page.
  • Your name can only appear on your cover page and nowhere else.
  • Please use 12-point font and double-space between characters.
  • Pages must be numbered.
  • Only one submission per playwright.

Play Requirements

  • The cast may not exceed five actors.
  • Make sure you time your play so that it is 10 minutes or less. Longer plays cannot be considered for performance.
  • Please include translations if any of your dialogue is in a language other than English.
  • Your play will not be considered if it has already receive recognition through a professional premiere.


  • The Nuevas Voces: A 10-Minute Playwriting Contest and Festival will consider only original work.
  • Submitted plays that are based on any other published work, including but not limited to novels, short stories, films, teleplays, other theatrical scripts, etc., unless also written by the submitting author(s), are ineligible.
  • Judges will make final production decisions based on the quality of the work and practicality of production, and such decisions shall be final. 

The 8th Annual Nuevas Voces Festival judges are:

  • Sarah J. Fabian (she/they), M.F.A., CMT Department Associate Professor and Managing Director of Stage Center Theatre
  • Adam Goldstein (he/him), M.F.A., CMT Department Assistant Professor and Artistic Director of Stage Center Theatre
  • TBA

Past Contest Winners

September 2023 Winners

First Place: Victor Braeseke, "Two People"
Second Place: Samuel Seo, "It's My Move"
Third Place: Luke Steadman, "The Interns"
Honorable Mention: David Lipschutz, "Tripping on Xanax at a Mumford & Sons Concert" 
Honorable Mention: Michael Gross, "The Palestine/Israeli Conflict" 
Honorable Mention: Anmol Gulati, "The Hated Ones"

October 2022 Winners

First Place: Nathan Baltudis, "Impasse"
Second Place: Gabriel Olvera-Cabral, "Three Friends"
Third Place: Melony Aponte, "Members Only"
Honorable Mentions: Ivory Banks, "Vaccination-Recover"; Wyn Thomas, "Beautiful Daughter"; and "Melanie Baker "Especially When I'm Driving"

October 2021 Winners

First Place: Alex Chicas, "Oh Snap!"
Second Place: Wyn Thomas, "Scared"
Third Place: Mara Galeno, "The Better Life"
Honorable Mentions: Brenda Gilmore, "Holiday Plays;" Mary Kroeck, "6 Feet;" Zaria McDonald, "The Right Decision"

October 2020 Winners

First Place: Sean Carey, "Departure, Initiation, Return. The Bus."
Second Place: Raeghan Draper, Under Par"
Third Place: Charles Sipps, "Chekov's Potato"
Honorable Mentions: Emily Maso & Raúl Dorantes, "El Tres Laredos;" Michael Maura, "Somethin' Somethin;" Ata Younan, "The United Statesian Nightmare"

October 2019 Winners

First Place: Shannon Naylor, "The Fear of the Little Things"
Second Place: Emily Feldman, "Live It Up List"
Third Place: Ariel Notterman, "Frosted" 
Honorable Mention: James Jarvis, "Too True to Be Good" 

January 2019 Winners

First Place: Diego Roman, "Enough" (Current College Category)
Second Place: Ariel Notterman, "Meet Me in the Parking Lot" (Current College Category)
Third Place: Becca Peterson, "A Private Hell" (Current College Category)

First Place: Dan Wirth, "Full Life" (NEIU and Greater Community 29+ Category)
Second Place: Sidney Davis III, "Crisis of Independence" (NEIU and Greater Community 29+ Category)

January 2018 Winners

First Place: Dalton Brown, "Spring Cleaning" (Current College Category)
Second Place: Becca Peterson, "Talking the Talk" (Current College Category)
Third Place: Becca Peterson, "A Private Hell" (Current College Category)

First Place: Felicia Madlock, "Anna's Assumptions" (NEIU and Greater Community 29+ Category)
Second Place: Dan Wirth, "Shed" (NEIU and Greater Community 29+ Category)
Honorable Mention: Mike Palatnik, "An Unusual Bar" (NEIU and Greater Community 29+ Category)