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The Sauk To Produce Award-Winning World Premiere

The Sauk is one of only six theatres in the nation to receive this honor.

The Sauk To Produce Award-Winning World Premiere

The American Association of Community Theatre (AACT) is pleased to announce The Sauk Theatre of Jonesville, Michigan, has been selected to participate in AACT NewPlayFest 2024 as a Producing Theatre.

The Sauk is one of only six theatres in the nation to receive this honor. Over 300 playwrights submitted original works this summer, and reviewers are now in the process of choosing the finalists from those submissions. Each Producing Theatre will select one of these scripts to produce, and the six plays are then announced as AACT NewPlayFest 2024 award winners.

Keeping in line with the AACT mission of providing support and resources to community theatres, AACT NewPlayFest addresses the critical need for new, high-quality plays for community theatre audiences around the globe. This AACT playwriting competition is unique with the guarantee that an established theatre will produce each winning play as a world premiere, and that Dramatic Publishing Company will publish the script in an AACT NewPlayFest anthology.

The Sauk began in 1961 as the Broad Street Players. The organization purchased the former Jonesville Opera House in 1971 and converted it into what is now the Sauk Theatre. The Sauk, also known as Hillsdale Community Theatre, annually produces a five-show mainstage, three-show SaukSeconds season, and a summer "Family Fun" production. Also, each summer, Plays-in-Development readings give local playwrights an opportunity to workshop their plays. The program began in 2015 and expanded nationally and, in 2018, internationally. New plays are also presented as part of the annual Sauk Shorts, an evening of 10-minute plays. The Sauk's Teen Theatre Project is developing a peer-created anti-bullying play to tour local schools. All these activities have earned the company local, state and national attention for its unique programming and dedication to producing new work.

The Sauk was a Producing Theatre in the 2020 AACT New Play Festival, with On Pine Knoll Street, by Mark Cornell.

Many theatres across the country applied to be a Producing Theatre, who receive the recognition that comes with premiering a national award-winning play, national publicity, the experience of working directly with the playwright, the honor of introducing an award-winning playwright to their community, and having a direct impact on the future of the play. The winning plays will receive a full production by the Producing Theatre between June 2023 and December 2024. In addition to The Sauk, the selected Producing Theatres for AACT NewPlayFest 2024 are Cottage Theatre in Cottage Grove, Oregon; Hickory Community Theatre in Hickory, North Carolina; Lincoln Community Playhouse in Lincoln, Nebraska; Stage Left Theatre in Spokane, Washington; and Verona Area Community Theatre in Verona, Wisconsin.

AACT NewPlayFest has proved to be a great success with six original plays being produced as world premieres across the country every two years. Visit aact.org/newplayfest to see information on past winning plays and their productions. The past winning plays are available to be produced through Dramatic Publishing Company. Visit dramaticpublishing.com for information on producing these new works.

AACT's mission is to help theatres thrive by providing them with networking, resources, and support. It represents the interests of thousands of theatres across the United States and its territories, as well as those with the U.S. Military Services overseas.



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