Annual High School Playwriting Festival

Bringing the playwriting works of York County high school students to life on stage.

For ages

6th - 12th Grade Students


    Dates to be announced

Program Overview

The Appell Center Annual High School Playwriting Festival is designed to encourage York County high school students to create and express their unique perspective through the writing of ten-minute plays. Each year, ten distinguished plays are selected and given a director, design team, a cast, and then performed on the Appell Center stage.

2017 Distinguished Plays

Behind the Gilded Doors by Nicholas Martinez, Central York High School

Blue Jay on High by Paige Dern, Dover Area High School

Chameleon by Gavin P. McCabe, Central York High School

Crowded Room by Kathryn Seigle, Dover Area High School

Don't Go Into the Woods by Lauren Jasitt, Central York High School

Lewis and Clark and the Data Crisis by Aubrie Wise, Red Lion Senior High School

Phantom Force by Roselyn Spence, Dover Area High School

The Red Victor by Isaac Embry, Central York High School

The Socialite by Hannah Kibler, Central York High School

Stranger than Strange by Lillian Hoover, West York Area High School

Need Assistance – We Can Help!

Each year, teachers are encouraged to participate in a Playwriting Residency consisting of eight playwriting workshops where a guest teacher visits the classroom and guides students in the playwriting process. Workshops are aligned with the Pennsylvania Common Core. The Appell Center also hosts a one-day free playwriting workshop.


All play submissions are due each year by December 31st and winners are selected in February. A panel of experts selects the winning plays.


Once the distinguished plays are chosen, a design team creates a basic set, costume, props, and lighting design for each play and cast auditions are held. The process culminates with a live evening showcase open to the public and a one weekday matinee for schools.


All playwrights must be in high school. Plays cannot exceed 10-minutes in length (approximately 10 pages).

For more information or if you are interested in setting up a Playwriting Residency, please contact Education Assistant, Dan Crowell, at 717-825-2239 or