Veteran playwrights will judge “60 is the new 40” script entries

Several past winners of 2nd Act Players’ new script competitions will be among the first-round judges of scripts entered in this year’s new script competition with the theme “60 is the new 40.”

Among the judges will be:

  • Jerome Jagielski, whose play Intentions was performed in 2019 as part of the 2nd Act Players Women’s Empowerment Play festival.

    Jerome Jagielski
  • Elizabeth DeSchryver, whose play Fair was selected to be performed in the 2nd Act Players’ 2018 #MeToo Play Festival.

    Elizabeth DeSchryver
  • Jean Waller whose Cattywampus also was performed as part of the 2018 #MeToo Play Festival. Waller also has acted with the 2nd Act Players as a member of the cast of its initial production of The Institute in 2016.

Also joining the judging panel are:

  • Sam Radom, whose play Carole White & the Seven Deadly Sins received a staged reading in 2019 on the City Lit Theater stage in Chicago. The reading came about thanks to the Chicago Writers’ Bloc in collaboration with Stockyards Theatre Project.


  • Wilson Cain III, Ed.D., a member of the literary managers and Dramaturge association (LMDA). Wislon received the Ed.D and MS in written communications from National Louis University, a MFA in acting from The Alabama Shakespeare Festival at The University of Alabama and a BFA in acting from the Goodman School of drama. He has worked as adjunct faculty at Columbia College Chicago, Auburn University, and Auburn University at Montgomery.  As a professional actor, Wilson has performed extensively in the Chicago, regional, and off Broadway Theatre. Wilson Is a recipient of the Joseph Jefferson award for “Outstanding ensemble work,” for the production, “The good times are killing me.” “An Awakening,” is his first published work.


  • Dan Zellner who  has worked as a playwright, actor, director and producer. Dan was the Artistic Director of Studio Z (a theater company that worked with theatre and digital media), served on the board of the Chicago Alliance for Playwrights and was an adjudicator for the Women’s Theater Alliance New Plays Festival.  Dan’s plays have been produced and presented in theaters and venues in Chicago and other cities in the United States. He received an honorable mention for the Cunningham Prize for Playwriting. Dan is a member of the Dramatists Guild.

“We’re honored to have these talented playwrights on our judging panel and look forward to reading their selections,” says 2nd Act Players Cofounder John N. Frank.

The competition already has attracted more than 100 entries. First-round judging, done by the guest playwrights and the members of the 2nd Act Players’ Board of Directors, will narrow the field to less than 20 finalists from which winners will be selected by board members, Frank explains.

The deadline for entries is Jan. 8. To enter, simply click here and fill out an entry form.

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