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128 NW Eleventh Ave, Portland, OR 97209 · 503-445-3700 · www.pcs.org
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JAW New Play Festival

JAW New Play Festival

The 2023 JAW New Play Festival was a success!

Thanks to all who attended and contributed to the festivities. JAW will return in July 2024! 

PLAYWRIGHTS: Check this page in fall 2023 for details on our open submission program for next year's JAW.

Preview image for JAW Play Reading: *Best Available*

JAW Play Reading: Best Available

Did you attend this JAW reading? Please take our survey!

After the sudden, and hushed, departure of the Artistic Director, the staff at a regional theater are ready for a change. Change that builds on the remarkable legacy of their institution and honors the community. Focusing on the future is the only way through.

Preview image for JAW Play Reading: *In the Basement*

JAW Play Reading: In the Basement

Did you attend this JAW reading? Please take our survey!

A dark coming-of-age comedy that celebrates the joy and messiness of how our identities are formed, gender is performed and how adulthood might just be a figment of our imaginations.

Preview image for JAW Play Reading: *Safe Ride*

JAW Play Reading: Safe Ride

Did you attend this JAW reading? Please take our survey!

The board members of an SGA (Student Government Association) in a high school in the south strive to operate like an ideal democratic government where all of their voices are heard and valued. But in the midst of planning for their senior legacy project egos, attitudes, and beliefs systems come into play.

Preview image for JAW Play Reading: Young Playwrights Showcase

JAW Play Reading: Young Playwrights Showcase

Did you attend this JAW reading? Please take our survey!

Don’t miss this chance to experience some of the newest voices in theater! Five young playwrights have been commissioned by PCS to write short scripts for JAW. This showcase will feature the dynamic short scripts they’ve developed, performed by professional actors.

About JAW

The JAW New Play Festival is Portland Center Stage’s week-long assembling of artists and audiences to create new plays! Each July, artistic teams, including playwrights, directors, and actors, come together to rehearse — and a lot of times rewrite! — a new play. The final piece of the process happens during the weekend, when we share “music stand readings” with audiences so the playwrights can hear their work, often for the very first time!

Why We JAW:

  • Develop energizing work
    • We are committed to developing dope plays!
  • Champion exciting voices
    • We are invested in playwright-driven artistic growth, giving opportunities to fresh, engaging, powerful theatrical voices.
  • Connect with our communities
    • We believe that audiences are active participants in the creation of new work. The audience is the final collaborator an artistic team needs to bring a play to life.

In addition to new play readings, Portland Center Stage presents Press Play events during the JAW festival weekend. To welcome people into the space, we offer pre-show performances and workshops, featuring dynamic local artists. These events include an ever-changing lineup of dance exhibitions of all genres, live music, visual art, choreographed movement showcases, interactive installations, and artist labs. All JAW events are free to the public and help introduce new audiences and community members to the breadth of talent in our city, and beyond.

JAW History

Since 1999, JAW has created a space for 92 playwrights to develop 95 plays. Most have gone on to receive professional productions across the country, including many world premieres at PCS.

Accessibility Info

Portland Center Stage at The Armory is committed to making our facilities accessible to all of our patrons. Wheelchair seating, accommodation for service animals, sign interpretation, and sound amplifying devices, and large print programs are available for JAW. For more information about these services, please visit our accessibility page.

Portland Center Stage is committed to identifying & interrupting instances of racism & all forms of oppression, through the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, & accessibility (IDEA).

Learn More

JAW Sponsors

Teen Playwrights Sponsors

2022-2023 Season Superstars

2022-2023 Season Supporting Sponsors

2022-2023 Season Producing Sponsors