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What are the program objectives of the NNMC?

The program objectives of the Next Narrative Monologue Competition are to:

  1. Introduce students to today's leading contemporary Black writers
  2. Expose students to acting techniques that enhance their knowledge of the art and skill of performance
  3. Utilize the arts to support students in making co-curricular connections
  4. Investigate how history and culture influence personal perspective through artful exploration
  5. Embolden students to use their voices to inspire social action

Who can participate?

High school-aged youth (grades 9-12) living in Washington state.

Does the NNMC cost anything?

There is absolutely NO COST to participate in the competition or Seattle Rep workshops!

What does the journey from Seattle Rep to the National Finals look like?

Regionally, students progress through three rounds: Preliminaries, Semi-Finals, and Regional Finals. Then, the top two winners from each regional competition participate in the National Finals, receiving an all-expense-paid trip to New York City that includes:

  • Workshops with theater professionals
  • Performance at the Apollo Theater
  • Ticket to a Broadway show
  • Cash prizes for the top three winners

Find the dates for these events here.

If I have a conflict and am unable to attend any of the three competition rounds, am I still allowed to participate?

No, you must be present for all three rounds. Find competition dates here.

Do I need acting experience prior to the competition?

This competition is open to all students who have an interest in acting and theater. No previous acting experience is required.

How long should my monologue be?

Your monologue must be between 1 and 3 minutes (from the first moment to the last). During competition rounds, the adjudication panel will be timing competitors. Monologues cannot be cut/paste together; there must be a reasonable point of entry to the piece.

Can I use props and costumes in my performance?

The judges are looking closely at your acting performance alone. No props or costumes are allowed. You have the option of using a chair to sit in during your performance. Dress comfortably and professionally.

How do I introduce myself before my performance?

You must “slate” before your begin your monologue. That means you will introduce your full name, the character of your monologue, and the playwright.

How do I select my monologue?

Students: Choose the piece that feels the most right for you! Any student can perform any monologue, regardless of the student’s and the character’s gender identity, age, or race. Students are not limited on the basis of race, but the language of the monologue (including racially charged language) must be unchanged.

Having trouble deciding? Attend one of our Monologue Choice Workshops or contact us for one-on-one support.

Educators: Free 50-minute informational workshops are available to schools and community organizations. Sign up for a no-commitment informational workshop for your class or group or contact us for more information.

The monologue compendium will become available to participants for perusal this fall. 

Can I perform an original monologue of my own?

No. The NMMC requires you to perform a piece from the compendium of approved monologues.

Can I change my monologue during the competition?

You may change your monologue prior to the Preliminaries, during workshops, etc. The monologue you use in your Preliminary audition must be the monologue used during the entirety of the competition.

How does adjudication work? Will I receive the feedback from the judges after my performance?

You will be judged on five categories: story, voice, movement, connection, and accuracy. Contact us after Prelims and/or Regional Finals if you would like the judge’s feedback.