Hall Pass: An Immersive Experience Blindspot Collective square logo

Blindspot Collective, a theatre company in San Diego dedicated to radically inclusive new work and diverse emerging artists, seeks new short musicals to be featured in Hall Pass, an immersive experience being produced in collaboration with La Jolla Playhouse as part of the Without Walls (WoW) Festival. Originally commissioned by New York University, Hall Pass is a collection of short plays and musicals set and performed throughout a high school, offering a glimpse of the world young people navigate every day. Brimming with moments any former teenager will recognize and relish— as well as those they might rather forget—audiences choose their own adventure as they experience the trials and triumphs of the class of 2022.

Hall Pass was previously produced in 2016 New York City in collaboration with Playwrights Horizons’ Theatre School. The show will make its West Coast premiere in October 2019 as part of the WoW Festival, a celebration of site-specific performance produced in partnership with the Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse.

Seeking New Short Musicals

As part of this upcoming production, Blindspot Collective seeks new short musical submissions that meet the following criteria:

  • Must be a short musical between 14-18 minutes in length
  • Must be set in a modern, American high school (though it could be in any physical space, be it a hallway, classroom, bathroom, common area, etc.)
  • Every character must be high school-age (though they may be played by an adult actor)

In addition to the criteria above we recommend the following:

  • The most successful pieces typically have 2-5 characters (but there is no required minimum or maximum)
  • We encourage a serio-comic style as works that mix humor and gravitas are often the most compelling
  • Musicals that unfold in a single scene and are unified in space and time (rather than being multiple scenes over a span of time) are preferred
  • Work that could be rated PG-13 is favored because while the intended audience is adults (and teenagers), graphic depictions of sex or violence, and persistent strong language can be alienating in intimate, immersive performance
  • Narratives and characters that challenge expectations or exist outside dominant culture will be favored because we wish to depict the contemporary high school experience in a way that might not be seen in the representation of teenagers in other media

Selection Process

Approximately 2 musicals will be selected, workshopped, and produced as part of Hall Pass. Any writer whose work is featured will also receive a $150 honorarium. Selected composers or writing teams will collaborate with Blindspot Collective on final drafts. A director, music director, and performers, will be selected by Blindspot Collective. Writers and composers are not expected to be physically present at rehearsals (but may choose to do so.) While a license to use the work for the exclusive purposes of Hall Pass will be granted to Blindspot Collective, artists retain sole ownership and copyright of their original work.

To ensure as equitable a process as possible, Blindspot Collective is happy to provide writers with research conducted with high school students. The organization will also make every effort to connect interested writers with current students for research or inspiration as desired.

MusicalWriters Festival speakers Macy Schmidt Drew Gasparini

Blindspot Collective La Jolla 1

Pre-Submission Assistance

During the month of May, Blindspot Collective’s artistic staff are happy to provide feedback on initial ideas, concepts, synopses, or character descriptions to assist writers in developing work that is more likely to meet the necessary criteria. This will also ensure that all new material avoids any similarity to existing pieces in the show. It is not required that you contact us in advance of submitting materials but we encourage you to use our team as a resource during your creative process.

To Submit Your Short Musical

A synopsis, character descriptions, and at least one song must be submitted by 6:00pm, Pacific Time on Friday, May 31. If possible, the synopsis should outline where music would occur. Sheet music is not required and studio recordings of music are not expected. In most instances, a scratch recording sung by the composer will suffice. Please include a cover page with your name, phone number, and email address. Decisions will be announced by July 1, 2019. All questions and submissions should be sent to [email protected]

As an organization, Blindspot Collective is committed to radical inclusivity. As our name suggests, we prioritize the experience and perspective of underrepresented communities and individuals that are often left out of the conversation — including people of color, immigrants, women, and individuals with disabilities. Therefore we strongly encourage submissions written by or featuring characters who are members of these or other marginalized communities.

For more information, visit www.blindspotcollective.org

Related article: La Jolla Playhouse rolls out lineup for latest WOW Festival, set for October at Arts District Liberty