Theater News

Roslyn Ruff and More to Judge August Wilson Monologue Competition

Students will compete for the top prize at Broadway’s August Wilson Theatre.

Roslyn Ruff joins the panel of judges for the 9th Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition.
Roslyn Ruff joins the panel of judges for the ninth annual August Wilson Monologue Competition.
(© David Gordon)

Kenny Leon's True Colors Theatre Company and Jujamcyn Theaters have announced plans for the ninth annual August Wilson Monologue Competition, set for May 1 at the August Wilson Theatre, home to Broadway's Groundhog Day.

The event, which is free and open to the public, features high school students from Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Portland, and Seattle performing monologues by the late, legendary American playwright August Wilson. There will be a special performance by American blues musician and actor Guy Davis and a tribute to actor Bill Nunn (Do the Right Thing).

Founded in 2007, the annual August Wilson Monologue Competition aims to expose a new generation of creative minds to the work and artistic legacy of this seminal American playwright. Program participants in cities across the country encounter Wilson’s ten-play cycle and receive coaching from teaching artists as they prepare their monologues for local, citywide, and national competitions.

A panel of celebrity judges will evaluate the competitors and select a winner. This year’s judges include Roslyn Ruff (All the Way), director Ruben Santiago-Hudson (Jitney), set designer David Gallo (The Drowsy Chaperone), Pauletta Washington (Beloved), and Brandon J. Dirden (Jitney).

This year's competition will afford students the opportunity to attend two Broadway shows (Sweat and Groundhog Day), work with one of Wilson’s closest collaborators, Tony-winning director Kenny Leon, and explore popular Manhattan attractions before making their Broadway stage debuts. The two finalists from each regional city will compete on the August Wilson stage on May 1.

The first-place winner will receive a $1,500 cash prize, the runner-up a $1,000 cash prize, and the honorable mention winner a $500 cash prize. Each of the winners will also become eligible for college scholarship opportunities, and all finalists will receive the gift of TCG’s Century Cycle collection.