Thank you for taking time to check-in with TNB to see how best to submit your play. We are a company actively looking for great plays, interesting ideas and exciting voices to develop and produce.
But, I don't wish to waste your time. I'm going to cut right to the chase and tell you about what is going on here at TNB. That way, you can decide if this is where you belong.
Here it is, the straight up truth about play submissions to TNB, written by me, Natasha MacLellan. As the company and I evolve with the times, these guidelines will evolve, too. They are a work-in-progress. A living document.
It is important for you, the playwright, to understand that Theatre New Brunswick is changing.
Once, we were a company that produced large musicals, British comedies and Broadway classics. We toured them, too. We loaded-up transfer trucks (yes, plural) and we brought our big, beautiful shows to all corners of this province. We didn't do many new plays and we didn't do many Canadian plays. It is a storied history, and some truly incredible artists graced our stages, backstages and rehearsal rooms over the years. However...
If you, the playwright, are researching us for context before you submit, I encourage you to look at what we have done in the last five years, found on the "About Us' tab of this website. You will see we list the 5-6 shows we produce each year and you will see large musicals listed in our seasons, true. Those shows are our year-end theatre school productions, which are a highlight of the spring for many families in this area. And, each year we do another larger (large-ish) family-oriented Christmas show. We still produce some spectacles, yes! So, if you are writing family friendly musicals or Christmas shows, by all means, send them to us. By family friendly, we don't just mean no foul language. We don't want anything that perpetuates racist, homophobic or sexist tropes.
Our Young Company and two mainstage shows are on the smaller side. 2-5 actors. We still tour, but we don't tour with trucks anymore, we tour with one van. This means we build tourable sets. Please keep these things in mind before you send us a script.
I encourage you to have a look at our social media. Look at the plays we've been developing. Look at the artists we engage. Look at what we've done during the pandemic. You'll learn a lot about our values and personality there.
Most importantly. Before you send a script. Consider this. We're currently focusing on plays by New Brunswick born or based writers. That doesn't mean we won't program your play if you're from Alberta or Nova Scotia, but it does mean that we're prioritizing those voices. If you aren't from New Brunswick, what is the connection you or your script have to the land New Brunswick is on? To the many people who live on the unceded territories of the Mi'kmaw, Wolastoqiyik, and Peskotomuhkati? Why does your play matter?
I'm seeking plays that have a very specific point of view. I am looking for strong voices. I'm looking for historically marginalized voices. I am looking for quirky characters, unsung heroes, local history, revolution igniting manifestoes, gauntlets that must be thrown down. Theatre New Brunswick wants to help re-author the world.
If this is the kind of play you are writing, send it to me, along with a brief summary and a character breakdown. Again, we have no full-time Dramaturge, and my reading pile is stacked very high. I do carve out a few days here and there to read. (Hint: Summer.) But I may not get to it for what will feel to you like far too long a time. I do my very best to acknowledge submissions, but email is hard, isn't it? Sometimes things get buried and I forget.
Send your submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Artistic Director, Theatre New Brunswick