The annual international competition was founded in 1989 by Alleyway Theatre in memory of Canadian actor/playwright Maxim Mazumdar (1953-1988).

Mazumdar’s many contributions to the early growth of Alleyway Theatre were artistically invaluable and instrumental in shaping a continuing relationship with Canadian theatre. It was at Alleyway Theatre that Mazumdar gave his final performance in the premiere of his original musical LUPERCAL on March 27, 1988.


Playwrights around the world (with or without representation) are encouraged to submit their plays and musicals each season for consideration for the Maxim Mazumdar New Play Award. The winning play receives a guaranteed cash prize and a full production in an upcoming subscription season.

The next round of submissions for full-length, unproduced new works will open in late spring/early summer 2024. The 2023 round closed on July 25, 2023 and received 953 submissions. Reading and evaluation is now underway and semi-finalists, finalists, and winner will be contacted (we hope) by December 31, 2023.

While there are no requirements for style or content, Alleyway seeks plays that are wholly original, uniquely theatrical, and completely authentic. Winning plays will be production-ready, and must not have had a professional production (workshops, readings, or educational productions excluded).

Alleyway is committed to producing and developing new works of theatre each season, as it has done now for over forty years. Updated submission information is available below. Please direct all questions to our literary team at

Mainstage, Cabaret, and Development projects are chosen through a rigorous selection process. Throughout the year, Alleyway accepts only agent submissions, solicited material, and work from our Playwrights Circle. Alumni playwrights or those writers local to Western New York (or writing about a WNY theme) may submit new work at anytime. Unfortunately, we are unable to accept unsolicited scripts outside of the Mazumdar submission window.

For all submissions, Alleyway seeks a diverse and inclusive representation of plays, stories, themes, locations, styles, as well as a diverse range of playwrights. Preference will be shown to works with vibrant characters and distinct voices, which engage in authentic human connection while representing a uniquely theatrical experience. 

2022 mazumdar AWARD


Inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1954 book The Natural House, THE NATURAL HORSE is a daringly wild play about a family of ex-Soviet immigrants in suburban Wisconsin. When eldest daughter Masha brings home a feral horse named Goodboy to live under mom and dad’s roof, the play explodes with strange silliness and magical beauty. An incredibly theatrical look at how we search for people and spaces to call home, THE NATURAL HORSE is a breathtakingly ambitious and subversively hilarious exploration of human connection.

“I'm so thrilled to receive the Mazumdar Award and I'm ecstatic to be able to share THE NATURAL HORSE at the Alleyway,” says Adamson. “This play is a big, wacky, heartfelt comedy that somehow blends classic Russian literature, architectural theory, and zany puppetry into a contemporary folktale about family, growing up, and building a home.”

T. ADAMSON is a Texas-raised writer and theater artist of Anglo/Mexican ancestry. T. has developed new work with Vineyard Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, Great Plains Theater Commons, Clubbed Thumb, JACK, Cutting Ball, The Mercury Store, and many others. Plays include NO NOTHING (GPTC), THE STRAIGHTS (JACK, Bay Area Playwrights Festival finalist), and USUS (Clubbed Thumb Winterworks). He is an alumnus of Fresh Ground Pepper's Playground Playgroup, Exquisite Corpse Company's Fall Writers' Lab, and Clubbed Thumb's Early Career Writers' Group. Awards include Irv Zarkower Award, Rita and Burton Goldberg Playwriting Prize, a Falco/Steinman Commission from Playwrights Horizons, and the 2022-23 Paula Vogel Playwriting Award from Vineyard Theatre. MFA: Hunter College.


30 Seconds
by Jayne Deely

The Death of Hayden Waverly, the Most Popular Person in the World
by Lauren Wimmer

*No award was presented in 2021 due to the hiatus caused by the Covid pandemic. At this time, the digital and one-act categories have been paused and entries for the 2023 award will only be accepted in the full-length category.

Be a Reader

If you would like to be a reader for the next round of the Mazumdar Award, please register below. We will reach out on a rolling basis.

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In 2020, the competition added a digital category, and the winner GOAT SONG by Matt Harmon, premiered live via Facebook and Instagram in Fall 2020 as part of Alleyway’s pivot and commitment to live theatre during the pandemic.

2020 Full Length Winner and Finalists
THE ALEPH COMPLEX by Deborah Yarchun
HURTSONG by Caridad Svich
SAPIENCE by Diana Burbano

2020 One Act Winner and Finalists
EL ÁRBOL by Josie Nericcio
CROC OF by Seanan Palmero Waugh
LIFT by Heidi Kraay
THE YELLOW WALLPAPER by Eliza Randall and Sam Norman

A History of the Full Length Winning Plays

  • 2020 THE ALEPH COMPLEX by Deborah Yarchun
  • 2019 BERSERKER by Bruce Walsh
  • 2018 FACTORY FOR MURDERERS by Scott McCrea
  • 2017 PHILOSOPHUS! by Colin Speer Crowley
  • 2016 BEGINNING AGAIN by David Alan Brown
  • 2015 DEAR LYDIA by Larry Gray
  • 2014 SPEAK NO EVIL by Sonya Sobieski
  • 2013 TROPICAL HEAT by Rich Orloff
  • 2012 SET UP by Dan Noonan
  • 2011 ROADKILL by Karen JP Howes
  • 2010 CUT-UPS by Kerry Muir
  • 2009 MOOKIE CRANKS A TATER!  by Joseph Palka
  • 2008 THE CAREFUL GLOVER by Jim Baines
  • 2007 TROMPING ON SACRED GROUND by Suzanne C. Dickie
  • 2006 THE SEABIRDS by William Orem
  • 2005 LOST IN HOLLYWOODLAND by Alex Wexler and Bill Parsley
  • 2004 WEDLOCK by Joshua Faignen
  • 2003 TRANSFERENCE by Wayne Peter Liebman
  • 2002 LINES IN THE SAND by Mark Rigney
  • 2001 A QUESTION OF COLOR by Michael Bettencourt
  • 2000 HARMONY by Robin Rice
  • 1999 ENGLAND AND NOWHERE by Jeffery Ewing
  • 1998 PATCH OF EARTH by Kitty Felde
  • 1997 YOURS TRULY by Larry Gray
  • 1996 THE STAIRS by Steven Luther
  • 1995 THE COOL PLACE by Dan Scoville
  • 1994 BEYOND THE PALE by Landon Coleman
  • 1993 THE BEST BAD MAN by Josh Frank
  • 1992 RATTUS RATTUS by James Englehardt
  • 1991 PEACEFUL CREATURES by Stuart Flack
  • 1990 THE JULIA SET by Larry Gray
  • 1989 COLUMBUS by Robert Kornhiser