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NOVEMBER 6, 2023



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ENOUGH! invites YOU to attend staged readings of this year’s plays in your community. 

On November 6, 2023 one year from the 2024 elections, six of the plays submitted through our nationwide call in Spring 2023 will be presented in an evening of readings staged simultaneously by theaters, schools, and community groups across the country.


Nearly 2,000 artists in more than 100 communities have participated across our two previous Nationwide Readings. Many have used ENOUGH! to forge meaningful community partnerships and create space for the youth of their area to be seen and heard.

Our teens are looking for answers on how to avoid becoming another statistic and saying, "Enough is enough."

Will you join them?

Click to Download




View as list (updated 12.22.23)

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We are proud to announce that the cornerstone event of the 2023 ENOUGH! Nationwide Reading will be produced in Washington, D.C. at The Kennedy Center’s Studio K


This collaborative effort between Kennedy Center Social Impact, Kennedy Center Education, and led by Event Producer Shanara Gabrielle, will feature a coalition of professional D.C.-area theaters, including Signature Theatre, Arena Stage, Round House Theatre, Imagination Stage, Olney Theatre Center, 1st Stage, and The Theatre Lab.


“Great art allows us to see the human condition in new and unique ways, and these young theater makers are an inspiration for using their distinctive voices to shine a light on the gun violence epidemic,” said Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Kennedy Center Vice President and Artistic Director of Social Impact.

KC Reading

2023 partner spotlights





The Smiles Behind  Lightning Strike
 A Call for Help  A Disorderly House
No Prospering Weapons 
 The Matter at Hand

The Smiles Behind

by Niarra C. Bell

What if a single conversation could stop tragedy in its tracks? A young girl risks everything to put that to the test as she confronts the police officer attempting to chase down her beloved brother.

Niarra C. Bell (she/her, Virginia) is a recently graduated 17-year-old from Virginia with an intense passion for the performing arts. Niarra has experience in acting, directing, and backstage technical work. Niarra hopes that her play will help bring a different perspective on gun violence to her community as she has seen the problem grow worse in recent years. Niarra believes that, even if her play reaches only one person, she has helped the movement against gun violence. Niarra would like to thank God first for giving her the idea for the play and the inspiration to write. Next, Niarra would like to thank her parents, family, and friends for all of their support. Special thanks go to her mom who was always willing to stay up with Niarra while she wrote The Smile Behind. Finally, Niarra would like to thank her teacher and mentor Mrs. Tracy Bourne as she is the one who encouraged Niarra to write and submit The Smiles Behind to the ENOUGH! contest. Niarra is extremely grateful for this opportunity and the experience. The Smiles Behind is Niarra’s playwriting debut.

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Lightning Strike

by Amanda Fagan

You're more likely to be struck by lightning than experience a school shooting. Hallie has never been struck by lightning, but she has survived a school shooting, and somehow she must keep on surviving.

Amanda Fagan (she/her, Montana) is a senior at West High School in Billings, Montana. She started writing when she was six years old and never stopped. Ever since, she has spent the vast majority of her free time crafting worlds and stories that she might never write. She has dreamt of being a published author since she was seven, and made a goal to be published before she graduated high school. When she is not attempting to write the next Great American novel, she can be found rewatching Barry, listening to Starkid musicals, and reading books about World War II. She intends to study history and creative writing at the University of Montana in Missoula. Lightning Strike marks Amanda's debut as a playwright.

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A Call for Help

by Pepper Fox

For three 911 operators, an ordinary night at work explodes into matters of life and death as they try to guide their callers to safety against increasingly desperate odds.

Pepper Fox (she/her, Kentucky) is a visual arts student at DuPont Manual from Louisville, Kentucky. Pepper took a playwriting class for the first time and she fell in love with it. She loves to write down words that can impact people as well as find like-minded individuals who love to interact with the arts in all forms as well.

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A Disorderly House

by Sam Lee Victor 

As two parents pack up their child’s dorm room, they come face to face with everything they thought they knew, and everything it is too late to know, about their child, themselves, and each other.

Sam Lee Victor (he/him, New Jersey) is a playwright and actor currently studying acting at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA). When he is not in the middle of nowhere in North Carolina, he lives just outside of New York City (in other words, New Jersey). His monologue, Nameless, won the Silver Ear in the Hear Me Out Monologue Competition in 2022 and has been published by Smith & Kraus. His play, Just Like That, was a semifinalist in The Blank Theatre’s Young Playwrights Festival in 2022. His work was also produced by the Wisconsin Shakespeare Festival in 2023, where he was named the winner of their Young Voices competition.

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No Prospering Weapons

by Justin Cameron Washington

Hip-Hop and theater collide in this poetic ballad of a play, where the lines between victim and suspect, righteous and wicked, and good and evil are blurred in the aftermath of a violent crime.

Justin Cameron Washington (he/him, Michigan) uses writing to tell stories that address a lack of representation. A little over a year ago, Justin created the titled "JUScreatedbycam" to act as a somewhat blank canvas for his creations while in high school. These creations have included performance, photo and video production, and design. But the main outlet that Justin embraces is writing. Justin's first ever piece published was titled please don't mind my mind, through his participation in Mosaic Youth Theater of Detroit, which spoke on the issues of youth mental health. Justin challenges himself with every piece to continue to grow in personal improvement and hopes that he can make an impact on anyone that comes across his work.

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The Matter at Hand

by Valentine Wulf

A school’s administrative staff contemplate ways to prevent future shootings, including extending school kindness week into school kindness month and giving the principal free reign over an Uzi.

Valentine Wulf (she/her, Washington) is fascinated by nuclear war, armageddon, and pink plastic lawn flamingos. Her first play, Welcome to the Landfill, was produced by Penguin Productions in 2022, and she made her directorial debut with a 1950s sitcom-musical adaptation of Macbeth in 2023. She collects vintage Barbies and enjoys borscht. She writes with assistance from a magic bowling ball named Kathy who can see the future.

2023 Plays

Audience guide


Download our 40-page audience guide! This guide includes deep dives into each play, writer spotlights, essays on the issues, and resources on gun violence statistics and current gun laws. (Email required for download.)

Click to Download


When is the Nationwide Reading?

Monday, November 6, 2023.

What is the ENOUGH! Nationwide Reading?

On the same evening across the country, theaters, schools, and community groups stage readings of a script comprised of six (6) new 10-minute plays by teen writers confronting gun violence, selected by a committee of nationally-renowned playwrights out of plays received in our Call for Submissions. Watch this PBS NewsHour feature for an excellent overview.

How much rehearsal is needed?

Past Nationwide Reading hosts have said the amount of rehearsal hours ranged anywhere from 2 hours total to 24 hours or more. The average amount of rehearsal time is around 10 hours, spread out over a few days or weeks.

What resources are provided?

Once we received a signed licensing agreement from your organization you will have access to a partner area of the website that contains PDFs of all the scripts, toolkits and resources to help you organize your readings, social media toolkit, press release templates, and digital poster/flyer files.

Can we charge admission?

Yes! And, if you can, we strongly encourage you to raise money for a local gun violence prevention organization. If you want suggestions, don't hesitate to contact us!

What is a staged reading, exactly?

Great question! They can be straightforward - actors at music stands - and staging is minimal to nonexistent. Technical requirements are usually pretty low, sometimes as simple as "lights up, lights down." If you want further tips on staged readings, go HERE.

Can I preview the plays?

Sure can! View previews of the plays HERE.

What fees are associated with the reading?

It will cost you nothing to participate, and we'll give you the scripts and permission to perform the plays for the Nationwide Reading for FREE. The answer in terms of production cost depends on many factors, like whether or not you are paying your actors, etc. High schools, community organizations, and smaller theaters spent $0-$600 on their reading. Mid-range to larger theaters spent between $1,000-$5,000.

What does casting look like?

Here is the casting breakdown as of July 2023. All plays are under revisions and casting is subject to change. None of the plays have more than six characters. Last year producers cast actors in multiple plays. We strongly encourage you to cast the younger characters age-appropriately.

Does the reading start at a specific time?

Nope! We’ll have readings all over the country starting at different times on November 6.

How long is the reading?

Plan for your reading to last 80-90 minutes. This year we will have six (6) 10-min plays. In the past, some of our plays have run over 10-min, and some have run under. For a post-show discussion or other community engagement component (which we hope you do), give yourself anywhere from 30-60 minutes, or more.

We have rules about mature language. Can you accommodate us?

Obviously, our preference would be for you to do the play as written. If, however, you must adjust and/or omit language due to the venue you’ll be performing, please do so at your discretion. We will not be providing substitutions for language that might be deemed offensive.


enough! IN ACTION:

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