Copy of May Newsletter

May, 2015
NETC NEWS Ann Marie Shea, editor
The award was created in 1997 to honor the late Aurand Harris (1915-1996) for his lifetime dedication to all aspects of professional theatre for young audiences.
Aurand Harris Memorial Playwriting Award Chair, Jay Di Prima, Steps Down.
Angela Miller-Brown New AH Chair
Dr. Jay DiPrima, guiding light in creating the NETC Aurand Harris Memorial Playwriting Award, has retired from that post.  Many thanks to Jay for his long years of service.  He will be followed by Angela Miller-Brown of Lyndonville, VT, a member of the Youth Division on the NETC Board of Directors.
The award was created in 1997 to honor the late Aurand Harris (1915-1996) for his lifetime dedication to all aspects of professional theatre for young audiences.
When Aurand Harris died in 1996, an NETC Children’s theatre board member contacted Lowell and Nancy Swortzell of New York University, the executors of his estate, to offer a memorial playwriting award in his honor. At the time, Lowell was completing the authorized biography of Harris entitled The Theatre of Aurand Harris: America’s Most Produced Playwright for Young Audiences (©1996 Anchorage Press) and so he readily agreed to help initiate this award. NETC voted to approve this award and at its 1997 Conference in Worcester, both Lowell and Nancy Swortzell addressed the audience in gratitude for this initiative. Numerous breakout sessions were devoted to the memory of the life and works of Harris, including his work with Harwich Junior Theatre. Over many summers, Aurand lived in Harwich, MA on Cape Cod, directing and workshoping his latest plays for young audiences prior to publication.
As the cover notes of Swortzell’s text elucidates, Aurand had three careers – an acclaimed elementary teacher in New York City, a prolific playwright of sixty published plays and a nationally sought lecturer in playwriting. The biography reveals the talent of this dramatist who “prodigiously experimented in forms, themes, subjects, sensitive adaptations as well as originals that are already hailed as new classics.”
Since the initiation of this Award in 1997, twenty-five playwrights for young audiences have been honored. Almost half of these works have been published. This competition is open to all writers with full-length plays for young audiences. The application and its requirements are listed on NETC’s website.  The judging process has been chaired by Jay since its inception and involves both a preliminary evaluation by three readers and a finalist evaluation by three additional readers. Fortunately, many of the finalist readers are editors of established companies for children’s plays. Highly qualified editors from Anchorage Press, New Plays Inc., Dramatists, Dramatic Publishing, Bakers, Jac Publishing have each reviewed and published these award-winning plays. The number of plays submitted each year has ranged from six to thirty-seven.
NETC is seeking volunteers who wish to read and evaluate Harris Competition scripts for this coming year. In the past, volunteers have been chosen from among theatre practitioners throughout New England – directors, producers, actors, writers and publishers of young audience works.
Beginning in mid May through July, preliminary readers will carefully read and prioritize their apportioned scripts for finalist consideration. During the latter part of July through the end of August, finalist readers will provide their critique and ranking of the selected finalist scripts. The Chair will coordinate and assess all of the evaluations and determine first and second place winners (if appropriate). On September 1st, the chair will notify NETC of the winning scripts. Winners will then be contacted and invited to attend the NETC Harris Playwriting Award Ceremony in November. Copies of the script will be disseminated to potential readers selected by the children’s theatre board. Readings of the script may be scheduled as part of the annual conference workshops.
NETC Playwrights Enjoy Minute of Glory at Boston Theatre Marathon

Boston Playwrights Theatre will support the Boston theatre community Sunday, May 10, with its seventeenth annual Boston Theatre Marathon, a day-long celebration featuring 50 ten-minute plays in ten hours.  All proceeds benefit the Theatre Community Benevolent Fund, which provides financial support to theatre and theatre artists in times of need.
Some NETC playwrights will have their plays read on Saturday, May 9, as part of the Warm-up Laps (reading of one-act plays), and Sprints (reading of one-minute plays).
Among the Warm-up Laps is Hair of the Dog, by Constance Congden, (2004 NETC Special Award recipient), about Shakespeare’s response to the death of Marlowe.
Featured Sprint playwrights enjoying sixty seconds of fame include Eastern Connecticut State University’s Edmond Chibeau ( Impoverished Scholar Sitting by the Side of the Road Meditating on the Transience of All Things Physical) and NETC dean of College of Fellows and NEWS editor, Ann Marie Shea (Celebrity).
To order tickets and for a complete listing of Sprints, Laps, and Marathon events, go to
Save the date:
Convention 2015
October 22nd – October 25, 2015
Westford Regency Inn and Conference Center
Westford, Massachusetts
Register for the hotel by October 1 and get last year’s rates: $120 includes breakfast (up to four per room)
Program proposal form is available on our
We are seeking nominations for the following Board positions:
Executive Vice President
Director of Development
Director of Communications
College Division
One to replace Scott
Secondary Division
One to replace Tom
Youth Division
One open slot
Professional Division
three open slots
Community Theatre Division
One open slot
We encourage self-nomination.  Please send your nominations with a brief statement of qualifications to:  Jamie Taylor:
MMAS Black Box Theatre (Mansfield, MA)—Upcoming Events in May
Come join us on May 16, as we kick-off the first annual Franklin Cultural Festival.  Relax with friends of the arts and enjoy desserts, as well as a cash bar, and music from FPAC’s Acme Jazz Trio.  The night will also highlight some snippets of several of the performances and demonstrations that will be featured during the festival in July. Your $18 ticket will help offset the costs associated with the Cultural Festival and will give you a great evening. Your support of this effort is appreciated.
On May 21, the Black Box launches a Local Artist Series, shining a spotlight on this region’s bright musical talent. Local singers and songwriters share the stage and tell the stories behind their music for this special evening hosted by WMRC’s Ray Auger! The inaugural performance will feature acoustic sets by Ken Barney, Gay Barboza, Chris Ross and Kate Russo, all 2015 WMRC Local Music Award nominees honored among the best area musicians and recognized for their creativity and contribution to the Greater Milford music scene.
May 29 will be a special evening of Black Box Cabaret spotlighting the vocal stylings of talented FPAC alumni performers! Accompanied by the ACME Rhythm Section, entertainment is presented in an intimate night-club atmosphere. Black Box Cabaret is sponsored by Milford National Bank and Trust.
For more information, go to .
OLIVER! Staged by Massasoit Theatre Company—Special Invitation to High School Students
Special HS Drama Reception!
From Massasoit Theatre Company​ (at Buckley Performing Arts Center Large Theatre Brockton, MA)
8 p.m., FRIDAY MAY 15th
To get this special price, use the link at the bottom to get tickets. Once there select ALL student tickets and use the coupon code “HSDRAMA”, even if there are adults in your order. You MAY use this code for parents/guardians and guests!
Full price- $18
Student/Senior- $16
Special HS Drama rate- $14
Reception- 7:00
Showtime- 8:00
Ticket Link:
Boxoffice: (508)427-1234
Jeffrey Potter-Watts (1962-2015), former NETC PresidentJeff Watts
NETC mourns the untimely passing of a former President, Jeffrey Potter-Watts, who after a long struggle with cancer, passed on March 25, in Charleston, SC.  He will be missed by his many friends and students.
Dear Friends, Colleagues & Artistic Associates,
Would you like to:
Stretch your creativity in a supportive environment? Immerse yourself in art? Meet a really interesting group of people?
This year, as part of the KO FESTIVAL OF PERFORMANCE. held each summer on the beautiful Amherst College campus in Amherst, Massachusetts, we are offering 3 unique workshops. Join us for one, or more, of our 6-day intensives with expert teachers who are adept at gearing their classes for all levels of experience. Past participants have come from as far away as Australia and Germany, from across the country, and from right down the road — and have ranged in age from 18 to 80.
Won’t you join us this summer?  Register before May 15 and get our Early-Bird discount!
For a Complete listing of programs and activities of KO Festival of Performance click on the link below:
To submit articles for the NETC NEWS, email to :
Ann Marie Shea at

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