national play festival /

national play festival

Promoting the finest new Australian writing

A celebration of richness and imagination, the National Play Festival is a glorious palette of new Australian stories. Curated from work developed through Playwriting Australia’s core programs, the Play Festival is an explosion of unseen invention for industry and audiences.

Over four days we present public readings of a selection of the most dynamic new plays in Australia from our leading artists and freshest new voices.

Public Talks
We ignite the National Play Festival with a provocative exploration of the purpose of art in our wider society and the role of the writer in inventing new lenses to view the world.

Playwrights’ Program
We invite playwrights to masterclasses and gatherings to discover new frontiers in craft and ambition.

Industry Forum
The Play Festival remains a key annual gathering of creatives and producers working with new writing from around the country.

2016 National Play Festival
27 – 30 July 2016

The Malthouse Theatre, Melbourne


Past Play Festivals

National Play Festival 2015 Event Page 623x356

National Play Festival 2015, Adelaide

National Play Festival 2014

2014: Sydney, New South Wales



2013: Perth, Western Australia


2012: Melbourne, Victoria

2011: Western Sydney, New South Wales

Visit the Playography to explore the full list of supported plays


Photo credit: Reading of Mortido by Angela Betzien at the National Play Festival 2014. Photo Stephen Godfrey

featured blog posts

national play festival 2015: highlights & early bird sales

News / national play festival 2015: highlights & early bird sales

Playwriting Australia is thrilled to announce the new Australian plays to be presented at the National Play Festival 2015 in Adelaide this July and the start of Early Bird sales.


Andrew Bovell’s Keynote Address

News / Andrew Bovell’s Keynote Address

See the full transcript of Andrew Bovell’s landmark Keynote Address for the opening of the 2014 National Play Festival, a call to action to Australia’s theatre-makers