Theatre & Film
The League's One-Act Play Contest, founded in 1927, is the largest high school play production contest or play festival in the world. More than 14,000 Texas high school students in more than 1,200 plays participate in 300 plus contests, which take place from the beginning of March through the three-day, 40-production State Meet One-Act Play Contest. The One-Act Play Contest is supported by more than 300 members of the Texas Theatre Adjudicator and Officials Organization. The League's theatre program is considered by historians to be the foundation of educational and community theatre in Texas. It continues to be a major factor motivating increasing numbers of schools to offer theatre arts as an academic subject.
The UIL One-Act Play contest is a competition where similarly sized Texas schools present an 18-40 minute play and may be adjudicated by a panel of three judges or a single judge. The contest is held on a single day and open to the public. There are six possible levels of competition: Zone, District, Bi-Distrct, Area, Region, and State. At each level of competition a judge awards individual acting awards as well as selecting three productions to advance to the next level of competition up to the Regional Level where only two will advance to the State Level. After the awards are announced a Judge gives an oral critique to each of the schools. Because of the wide participation and diversity of plays produced certain rules and guidelines have been adopted by the State One-Act Play Office. These rules are in place to ensure safety, allow for equity, satisfy legal standards, and make the running of the contest practical.
Theatre & Film — News & Updates
Dancing at Lughnasa removed from the UIL Approved Play Lists
Important Update from Broadway Licensing August 2023
Please read the following carefully before submitting your UIL internal cuts and change requests:
Broadway Licensing titles (which includes all Dramatists Play Service, Playscripts, and Broadway Licensing Musicals)
If you are making ANY internal cuts, removing expletives, obscenities, or profanities, any such cuts must FIRST be approved by Broadway Licensing.
You must submit your detailed requests for internal cuts/changes to Broadway Licensing, so that they can forward them on to the authors and/or their representatives for approval.
Please note that ALL requests must be submitted prior to UIL’s submission deadline of December 10th. Broadway Licensing cannot guarantee approval of your request after this date. Please allow at least two weeks turnaround time for approval.
Approval from UIL does not mean your cuts/changes requests are approved by Broadway Licensing. Broadway Licensing cannot guarantee author approvals for your cut/change requests will be granted, even if UIL approves of your selection. Broadway's authors and their representatives have sole discretion over any alterations made to their work, under US copyright laws.
Teachers, if you have questions please email:
firstname.lastname@example.org for DPS (Dramatists Play Service) titles
email@example.com for Playscripts titles
firstname.lastname@example.org for Broadway Licensing Musicals
From Broadway Licensing (DPS): Lauren Gunderson Plays
Schools holding a performing license for the plays of Lauren Gunderson have permission to make cuts at their discretion, as needed, for UIL OAP competition.
Broadway Licensing has updated their internal policy to approve any Lauren Gunderson title cut requests as of this week. If you have any questions regarding your license, please contact Broadway Licensing directly.
Please do not contact the playwright. All communication regarding any Lauren Gunderson play must be directed to Broadway Licensing.
To Kill a Mockingbird removed from Approved Long Plays List
To Kill a Mockingbird, the version by Christopher Sergel, has been removed from the UIL Approved Long Play List. Due to legal issues, Dramatic Publishing is no longer allowed to permit the script to be cut for any reason.
Schools can contact Dramatic Publishing with any questions.
Deadline varies by district
1A OAP Participating High Schools
2A OAP Participating High Schools
3A OAP Participating High Schools
4A OAP Participating High Schools
5A OAP Participating High Schools
6A OAP Participating High Schools
If your school does not appear on the list and your high school plans to compete in One-Act Play, email email@example.com for instructions
for Plays NOT on the
HIGH SCHOOL Deadline
JUNIOR HIGH Deadline
45 days before contest
NEWLY added to the Approved Lists for 2023-24
UIL Theatre CALENDAR
Frequently Asked Questions
Concerning Play Licensing
For High School Play Directors
Deadline to enroll your high school campus for OAP participation via the UIL Online Entry System
Deadline to hold director's planning meeting
Last day for double representation notification to the League. This only applies when one school plans to compete with two plays--which is only an option when less than three schools are entered in the district contest.
Deadline for requesting permission to produce plays not on the approved lists and scenic elements that are are not permissible under contest rules and are “without which the approved play cannot be produced.”
Deadline for registering your play title in the UIL Online Entry System
At least TEN calendar days before your first contest
Deadline for Contestant Entry, play and set information and additional directors to be entered via the UIL Online Entry System
Note: Some Contest Directors set a contestant entry deadline earlier than the ten calendar days.
For Contest Managers & Meet Officials
First day to contact a single adjudicator or the first member of a panel for District or Zone contests
First day to draw performance order
Deadline to report bi-district information and adjudicators to state office
Deadline to hold director's planning meeting
First day to contact and contract the second and third members of a panel for zone and district contests
Deadline to set up district One-Act Play Meets in the Online Entry System
Deadline for executing judging contracts
Deadline for Contest Managers to certify online--This must be done annually
Deadline for certifying the results for district and bi-district contests