Charles M. Getchell New Play Contest

About the Award

SETC’s Charles M. Getchell New Play Contest is dedicated to the discovery, development and publicizing of worthy new plays and playwrights. Submissions are accepted between March 1 and June 1, annually. One winning playwright receives a $1,000 cash award and an all-expense paid trip to SETC’s annual convention, where both a critique and staged reading of the winning play are held. The winning play is also considered for online publication and a feature in Southern Theatre magazine.

Submission Period

Entries are accepted between March 1 and June 1, annually. Please review the guidelines before filling out and submitting your application. Complete applications should be sent to Getchell Chair Joe Frost at

2018 Winner

Moving by Sean Michael McCord

A staged reading of Moving by Sean Michael McCord was held Friday, March 9, 2018 as part of the 69th annual SETC Convention in Mobile, AL. The reading was immediately followed by a in-depth response session and critique.

About Moving

Over the span of thirty years in one apartment, couples move in, move out, come together, fall apart, and move on through life’s choices.

About the Playwright

Sean Michael McCord is a writer living in Charlottesville, Virginia. He studied film at UCLA and spent his twenties as a struggling screenwriter in Los Angeles before moving first to New York and then crossing south of the Mason-Dixon Line.

Sean works at the University of Virginia Library and is a founding member of the Charlottesville Playwrights Collective, a company of writers dedicated to producing new works. He also hosts a monthly radio program on WPVC-FM.

Sean has had plays produced in Virginia, Kentucky, Colorado, California, and Stuttgart, Germany. He is currently pursuing his MFA in playwriting as a member of the Playwright’s Lab at Hollins University.

2018 Respondent

Craig Pospisil

Craig Pospisil is an award-winning playwright and filmmaker. He’s the author of Months on End, Somewhere in Between, The Dunes and Life Is Short, published by DPS. His work has been seen in New York, LA, around the U.S., and in 17 countries, and has been translated into seven languages. His short film January was screened at over a dozen film festivals, including Bahamas, Berkshire, Big Apple, Hollywood Sky and Roma Cinema. He has written more than 60 short plays, including It’s Not You (theAtrainplays), Dissonance (Best American Short Plays 2010–2011), and There’s No Here Here (Best American Short Plays 2014–2015).

Past Winners

Play Title
2017 W.L. Newkirk [Miss]
2016 Ben Gierhart Another Man’s Treasure
2015 Will Coleman Helvetica
2014 Robert Plowman The Missing Link
2012 Beth Kander Scrambled
2011 Eddie Zipperer Nicolas the Worm
2010 Alice Shen Entitled
2009 Tommy Trull Honeyboy
2008 Richard Aellen Nobody
2007 Don LaPlant Two Body Problems
2006 Dennis Schebetta Obscura
2005 Scott Lahaie Dogfall
2004 Lew Holton Portal
2003 David Blakely Tales of Shoogilly
2002 William Hayes Going South with Phil and Margaret
2001 Alison Pruitt The Trial of Susan B. Anthony
2000 Linda Nell Cooper April Morning
1999 Steve Downs Glossolalia
1998 Sheryle Criswell …Where Late the Sweet Birds Sing
1997 David Davis Five Exits
1996 (Tie)          Kenneth Robins Atomic Field
1996 (Tie) Thomas W. Stephens Miserere, Passing Through
1995 Jason Milligan Walking on the Moon
1994 Bob King Dry Thunder
1993 Jett Parsley Locked Doors and Lightning Bugs
1992 Richard Zinober The House at the Edge of the World
1991 Adam Kraar A Twist of Faith
1990 Andrew Young Sanctuary
1989 Bernard Sabath Father and Daughter
1988 Jan Henson Dow & Robert Shroeder The Golden Dawn
1987 Eddie DeSantis American Subway
1986 Bobbi Evors Another Dimension
1985 Beverly Shatto Song of the parakeet
1984 Pat Kaufman Cookie Jar