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Third Rail Participates In #ENOUGH: Plays To End Gun Violence Year 2

Submissions are being accepted now through November 1 and the call is open to all writers across the U.S. in grades 6-12. 

As many teens return to classrooms for the first time since the pandemic, THIRD RAIL is joining forces with #ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence to give them a platform to explore the impact of gun violence on their lives and communities by writing 10-minute plays. Submissions are being accepted now through November 1 and the call is open to all writers across the U.S. in grades 6-12.

THIRD RAIL is part of a growing coalition of theatres and educational partners with the hope to have play submissions and a series of simultaneous readings in all 50 states. This year's campaign builds upon a successful 2020 program in which 7 plays were selected from 184 submissions and co-produced in a ground-breaking regional theatre collaboration for Broadway on Demand. More than 1,100 artists participated in 50 readings across 26 states and across three continents, reaching more than 6,000 people.

Third Rail is honored to participate in #ENOUGH again this year after a very successful reading and talk back discussion at our #ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence Reading in Dec. 2020, and encore reading of the same plays for Portland's Community Peace Collaborative in March 2021.

"We're excited to expand our participation in #ENOUGH this year by also offering a teen writing workshop series for Portland-area teens looking to write a 10-min. play to be submitted to #ENOUGH's competition. We hope to help inspire the teens in our community to use their voices and unique perspectives when writing a play to help end gun violence in our city, state, and nation. As a gun violence survivor myself, I am so proud to work on this programming that's centered around teens' experiences with gun violence in today's culture. It's an issue that needs creative minds, open hearts, and daring new ideas which are exactly what Portland teens have to offer."- Kelsea Vierra Ashenbrenner, #ENOUGH Program Coordinator for Third Rail


Statistics on gun violence in the United States are harrowing:

  • Each year 39,000 Americans die from gun violence-an average of 100 per day.

  • Guns are the second-leading cause of death for children under 18.

  • 2020 was one of the deadliest years on record, with the overall rate of gun violence-related deaths likely being the highest in the last two decades.

"Gun violence is an epidemic. It's beyond school shootings, beyond any single incident, and even beyond the loss of our own loved ones," says Manuel Oliver, #ENOUGH selection committee member, gun violence prevention activist, and father of Joaquin "Guac" Oliver-a victim in the 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. "My wife and I founded nonprofit Change the Ref to empower future leaders and raise awareness about mass shootings. And that's why I am excited to support this next iteration of #ENOUGH."

Oliver will judge submissions with nationally acclaimed playwrights Lydia R. Diamond, Naomi Iizuka, Rajiv Joseph, Mary Kathryn Nagle, and Don Zolidis. They will select 6-8 scripts to be published by Playscripts and produced nationwide in a series of simultaneous readings on April 20, 2022, the 23-year remembrance of Columbine. The teen playwrights will receive memberships and craft training from The Dramatists Guild and each will receive a $500 stipend sponsored by Change the Ref.

Third Rail is proud to participate in #ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence by hosting a FREE virtual #ENOUGH teen playwriting workshop series!

Teen Writing Workshop Dates:

Sunday, Oct. 3 @ 3-4:30pm - Finding Your Voice

Sunday, Oct. 10 @ 3-4:30pm - Starting a First Draft

Sunday, Oct. 24 @ 3-4:30pm - Audience Feedback

Workshops will take place on Zoom. Students will receive the Zoom link after signing up. Students are encouraged to attend all 3 workshops. Parental/Guardian permission is required.

The first 10 teens in grades 6-12 who sign up will be mentored by Third Rail Company Members who will provide feedback to teens submitting their play to #ENOUGH.

Workshops are open to any student in the Portland Metro Area. Teens do not need to have any prior writing or theatre experience. The only requirement is that teens have a desire to use their voice to write a 10-min. play on the topic of gun violence to be submitted to #ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence.

The workshop will cover the basics of writing a 10-min. play, how to find your voice, writing prompts, and more.

For more information about the workshop series or to sign up to participate, email kelsea@thirdrailrep.org or visit our website . Sign up deadline is Saturday, Oct. 2.Third Rail Participates In #ENOUGH: Plays To End Gun Violence Year 2

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