One-Act Play

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One-Act Play


Coordinator: Jonah Winn-Lenetsky


Registration Deadline: Friday, February 24, 2023


Competition Objectives

  • Showcase talent and skills in acting, artistic creativity, teamwork, public speaking, etc.


Competition Rules

  1. Each TCU may select and write a One-Act Play. If the script is not a TCU original, then all copyright issues will be the responsibility of that TCU team.
  2. Costumes are allowed and are considered to be the character attire worn by players. Masks are considered part of the costume and are allowed.
  3. Props are allowed; however, they shall be actively utilized by characters during the performance.
  4. Each team is allotted a maximum of fifteen (15) minutes to prepare and a maximum of thirty (30) minutes to perform. The minimum time limit for a TCU One-Act Play is thirteen (13) minutes.
  5. TCU students shall naturally project their voice during the performance as no microphones or public address system will be provided.
  6. Coaches cannot be judges.
  7. No videotaping or photos and no entry or exit during the performance.
  8. TCUs may register more than one (1) team, but shall not register more than two (2) teams.
  9. There are two (2) rounds for the One-Act Play Competition. All teams will initially present in the first round. The three (3) teams with the highest score from the first round will advance to the second round to repeat their performance for placing. Judges will change from the first round to the second round. This will occur even if there are only two (2) or three (3) competing teams. Since a TCU may have more than one (1) team, but no more than two (2) teams, in the One-Act Play Competition, the first, second, or third place may be won by the same Tribal College, but a TCU may not win all three (3) places.
  10. Since there may be respected Elders, tribal leadership, TCU administration, faculty, and family members in attendance, subject matter/material/language should to be in accord with the sensitivity of these viewers. Producing TCUs are responsible for content judgment.
  11. Monologues are allowed and are subjected to the same rules.
  12. Integrating singing/music/choreography is strongly encouraged; however, a song, dance, or musical instrument performance only with no dialogue, acting, plot, etc. does not constitute a One-Act Play, and therefore does not qualify for this competition.
  13. Judges are not allowed to inquire about the TCU identity of each team. Only the One-Act Play coordinator will know the personal names and TCU of the members of each team.
  14. Students are not allowed to announce their personal names, nor the TCU name after the company bow.
  15. Judges, coaches, and students are allowed to announce, inform all persons of the title(s) of the performance(s).
  16. The first day of the Student Conference will be an optional rehearsal day for the teams. Each team will be allotted one (1) hour to practice and the practice may be a closed rehearsal if requested. The coordinator may lead workshops in voice, blocking, stage movement, etc.
  17. The order and times of the performances will be determined randomly and then posted by title. Accompanying the title, order and times of the performances will be a randomly assigned number to indicate the TCU. If a TCU has more than one (1) submission, each submission will have a different assigned random number.
  18. Teams will be disqualified if they arrive more than fifteen (15) minutes late for their performances. If any cast member is late, the team may choose to continue with their performance. Teams should arrive at least thirty (30) minutes prior to performing as seated, respectful audience members.
  19. The stage for the One-Act Play competition is sixteen by twelve (16 x 12) feet or larger.


Competition Guidelines and Procedures

  • The One-Act Play coordinator is chosen by the host committee. The One-Act Play coordinator will reserve an appropriately-sized One-Act Play location depending on whether an audience will be permitted with a stage sixteen by twelve (16 x 12) feet or larger. If an audience will be permitted to attend then a large conference room will be required; if no audience will be permitted then the coordinator can reserve a classroom-sized room.
  • The One-Act Play coordinator will provide periodic updates to the host committee concerning registration numbers and the cost of the One-Act Play expenses. The coordinator will also post room details (electrical outlet locations, stage size, location, doors, lights etc) on the conference website for teams to better plan and prepare their play.
  • The One-Act Play coordinator may use the proven rules from above and make adjustments as the need arises to adapt to the specific host location, participant-entry size, budget limitations, etc.
  • Judges need to be highly experienced and are likely from the local or professional theatre companies in the AIHEC Student Conference host community. 2-4 judges will judge both the first round and the second round.
  • The One-Act Play coordinator needs to recruit ~ three (3) people (faculty, staff, or students) to assist with judging, onsite scheduling, monitoring, registration, and on-site setup of the conference room.
  • The coordinator shall maintain the anonymity of the teams’ Tribal Colleges or Universities at all times to ensure the impartial judging.
  • Suggested Checklist of Materials to bring to the conference: master spreadsheet of the registered students and teams and their One-Act Play titles and the judging scorecards.
  • Have a firm registration deadline. Postmarked, faxed, emailed, etc. at least seven (7) days before the start of the conference. No exceptions.
  • Randomly assign each performance with a number to represent their TCU. If a TCU has more than one (1) submission, assign each submission with a differently assigned random number. Enter registered students into a master spreadsheet by college/team to ease the checking in process at the conference. Order the One-Act Plays and times of the performances randomly and then post the One-Act Plays by title and previously assigned random number.
  • The One-Act Play coordinator arrives at the conference at least one (1) day before the competition to setup the room reserved for the One-Act Play with the stage and lights (spotlight if the space is large enough) and the maximum number of chairs allowed for the space.
  • The One-Act Play coordinator will act as the stage manager during the entire competition. Duties include getting the audience and actors in and out on time, attending to the judges’ needs – water and snacks, running sound on a laptop with speakers, turning off the overhead lights, cleaning the house (audience) and backstage area after each play. The house needs to be cleared at the end of the day so the judges can discuss all of the plays with confidence that their opinions are not overheard.
  • Once the conference begins, the students are responsible for their own scheduling of other conference competitions.
  • The One-Act Play coordinator is responsible for reporting the winning teams to the awards’ banquet coordinator and sending all the judging forms to the corresponding coaches after the competition.


Registration Deadline: Friday, February 24, 2023

To register for this event, please download the application and email Jonah Winn-Lenetsky (

PDF Document: Download and REGISTER