24 Hour Playwriting Contest

congrats to the 2024 Winners!

First Place: The Architecture of a Life (Margaret Legere)

Second Place: WE HAVE TO TELL YOU SOMETHING (Lisa Alves)

Third Place: Horse Girls (Jessie Walker)

Honourable Mentions:
A Cosmic Slurp (Carling Tedesco)
Cover and Simmer, Stirring Occasionally (Natalie Skov)
horseplay (Kole Durnford)
Jam (Guy R. Newsham)
our place in the grand terrible universe (Karley Jagusic)
roundabout; the semi-true story of first love (Araceli Ferrara)
Scouting our Landscapes of Sorrows (Rachel Foster)
Wasting Time (Jessa Richer)

Thank you to the 2024 24 Hour Play Selection Committee:

Barbara Fingerote
Sachin Sharma
Kunji Ikeda
Oliver Pitschner
Beth Airton

Contest Information

This contest is for anyone who has wanted to write a play but just needed a little encouragement and motivation! It challenges new and experienced writers to create a script in 24 hours while incorporating four secret elements that will be announced shortly before the contest begins.

The writing period starts at 9:00 AM EST on Saturday, January 27th and finishes at 5:00pm EST on Sunday, January 28th, 2024. The morning of the contest, participants will receive all instructions including the four elements to include in their script. The contest will take place completely virtually. To encourage rest and breaks, we are again giving 8 extra hours for the contest this year. If you are joining us from a different time zone, please account for the time difference in your planning!

The winner will be awarded a cash bursary of $500 and either the opportunity to meet with a dramaturg, or the chance to have a reading of their play during the 2024 Toronto Fringe Festival (July 3-14, 2024). You must select your preferred prize when you submit your play by 5:00 PM EST on January 28th. The first and second runner up of this contest will both be awarded a $250 bursary.

The 24-Hour Play Contest is generously supported by the Pat & Tony Adams Freedom Fund for the Arts.

If you would like to connect with other folks who are also participating in this contest, we have created a channel in the Toronto Indie Artsworker Discord. Join the Discord here.

Contest Timeline


The Toronto Fringe is committed to equality, diversity, and prioritizing accessibility. We warmly encourage applications from Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour communities, 2SLGBTQ+ identified persons as well as Deaf, Mad and disability-identified persons.

If you require any accommodations, please do not hesitate to contact Suzanne Wilkie at suzanne@fringetoronto.com

Adjudication Process

All submissions will be adjudicated anonymously and there will be two rounds of adjudication.

There will be a final selection meeting with all the committee members to discuss their shortlists and select the winner. 

The scripts will be assessed using the following criteria:

Click here to register!

Past contest winners

2023 Winners:

First Place: Waiting for Her by Brynn Cutcliffe
Second Place: A Monster by Ronit Rubinstein
Third Place: What Ever Happened to Geraldine by Araceli Ferrara

Honourable Mentions:

The Big Game - R/B Mertz
Blubes - Hannah Joubert
Cost of Living - Lisa Aikman
New Math - Brendon Allen
Second Arrow - Polly Phokeev
Sweepers - Tiyawnda McGregor