After DPI produced the original play “Saying Goodbye” that went on to Humana Fest. John Riley conceived the idea of an annual festival of new plays. In 1990 he developed the framework; and in 1991, with the help and dedication of Dodie Lockwood, Jim Payne, Nancy Campbell, and countless volunteers, the dream became a reality. It was at the first committee meeting that Dodie came up with the name – FutureFest was born.
Each year from August to April, the original playreading committee narrows the submissions down to twelve semifinalists. Each play receives at least 3 reads, with semifinalists being read by the full committee. A second committee selects the six finalists. The FutureFest winner is decided by five adjudicators made up of New York and regional theatre professionals. There is also an additional category for audience favorite.
During FutureFest weekend, playwrights are brought to Dayton as our special guests. Their plays are presented as either fully staged or staged readings, and are judged both as raw scripts, and how the scripts translate to the stage. Playwrights benefit from professional adjudications, networking opportunities, and speaking with our very knowledgeable and supportive FutureFest audiences.
Previous FF Winners (Audience Favorite):
- 1991 – Deep Six Holiday – David Landau
- 1992 – I Witness – Mary Miller
- 1993 – Power in the Blood – Sarah Bewley
- 1994 – Return of Crane – Stuart Boyce
- 1995 – Somewhere in Between – Craig Pospisil
- 1996 – Moments from Meanwhile – Glenn Rawls
- 1997 – The Interview – Faye Sholiton
- 1998 – Asher’s Command – Marilyn Felt
- 1999 – Scales of Justice – William Kovacsik
- 2000 – Full Bloom – Suzanne Bradbeer
- 2001 – Four Beers – David Van Vleck
- 2002 – Silent Heroes – Linda Escalera Baggs
- 2003 – Fateville – Gary Blackwood
- 2004 – Fellow Travellers – Margaret Lewis
- 2005 – Farragut North – Beau Willimon
- 2006 – Estelle Singerman – David Rush
- 2007 – Dawn and Sean – Joe Lauinger
- 2008 – Heartland – Anita Simons and Lauren Simon
- 2009 – Night and Fog – M J Feely
- 2010 – An Uncommon Language – Evan Guilford-Blake
- 2011 – Jinxed – Stacey Luftig
- 2012 – Nureyev’s Eyes – David Rush
- 2013 – TIE: A Position of Relative Importance – Hal Borden
The King’s Face – Steven Young
- 2014 – Sugarhill – Linda Ramsay-Detherage (Same)
- 2015 – The Consul, the Tramp, and America’s Sweetheart – John Morogiello (Blue Over You – Dan Noonan)
- 2016 – Shepherd’s Bush – Scott C. Sickles (Memories of the Game – Kristy Sharron Thomas)
- 2017 – Magnificent Hubba Hubba – Olga Humphrey (Same)
While many of our authors and winning shows have gone onto future success, Farragut North was the first to become a film; The Ides of March, directed by George Clooney, released by Sony Pictures in October 2011, almost six years to the day after the play was submitted to FF.
The first production was at FF 2005, and was Directed by Hilary Damaser who was also a winning FF director for the third year in a row. The director and several of the cast members were actual attorneys, fitting for this political drama.
- Stephen – Jeff Horst
- Paul – Ray Geiger
- Molly – Annie Pesch
- Ben – Eric Ng
- Tom – Bob Schuerman
- Ida – Jennifer Lockwood
- Frank – George C. L’Heureux, Jr.
- Waitress – Missy Kidd