Students in grades 4-12 are invited to participate as part of their school or an activity group with a monologue or scene from one of Shakespeare’s plays. Students are split into the lower division (grades 4-7) and upper division (grades 8-12) for judging purposes. Participating groups receive a free workshop and coaching session, along with a contest T-shirt.


REGISTRATION: All schools/groups must be properly registered, in advance, in order to perform in the preliminary rounds. All students must have a school or participating community group as a sponsor for their participation. Independents will be considered based on circumstance. 

ELIGIBLE GROUPS: The Shakespeare Monologue and Scene Contest is open to all schools and groups in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia within a 100 mile radius to the Pittsburgh Public Theater.

ENTRIES: Students can only perform in ONE piece - either one monologue or scene. Students are strongly discouraged from repeating material they performed in the past. Also, winners from the previous year cannot submit in the same category (i.e. any 2021 monologue winner eligible for this year's contest cannot submit another monologue, but can submit a scene; and/or any 2021 scene winner cannot submit another scene, but can submit a monologue.)

COACHING: Each school group is encouraged to participate in a free workshop and coaching session. More details will be sent in December.


LENGTH OF MONOLOGUE/SCENE: Monologues are restricted to 2-3 minute (approx. 20-50 lines) and scenes to 3-4 minutes (approx. 80 lines, but adherence to time is more important than number of lines). No performance may exceed 5 minutes. Judges will end the video recordings at 5 minutes. 

COSTUMES, SETS, & PROPS: Students are encouraged to focus upon their performance and understanding of the text, so costumes & props should be kept to a minimum. No set pieces are permitted.

MEMORIZATION: all pieces must be completely memorized; no prompting.

SKIP the accent! We want to hear YOUR VOICE.


  • When considering your students’ participation and safety, please keep in mind COVID-19 guidelines and resources as they’re provided from resources such as the CDC, the State of Pennsylvania, your school and community – including their respective policies, and best practices.


Click HERE to register for the 2023 Shakespeare Monologue & Scene Contest.

The 2023 Shakespeare Monologue and Scene Contest is generously supported by Richard W. Moriarty, M.D.