Polarity Ensemble Theatre–named Best Emerging Theater Company in our June 26 Best of Chicago issue–is inviting Chicago-area playwrights to submit unproduced full-length plays for its Dionysos Cup 2008 festival.

The event will feature staged readings of four new works selected from the submissions. Each play will be performed twice, and there will be postshow discussions with the cast, crew, and audience members.

“We are modeling the festival after the City Dionysia , the ancient Greek festival that honored the god Dionysos with new drama,” says PET artistic director Richard Engling. “Like the original, this festival will be a competition, with the audience deciding who will receive the Dionysos Cup. Any audience member seeing two or more of the shows will be eligible to vote. Anyone seeing all four shows will get two votes, which they can double on one play or split for two. We will announce the winner to the press and publish the winning play in ebook format on our web site (at the playwright’s discretion). Most important in the Festival, however, is the development process for all four scripts, moving them toward a possible eventual full production with us or with some other company.”

Mail scripts to Polarity Ensemble Theatre, 135 Asbury, Evanston, IL 60202. Entrants must enclose two copies of a synopsis, a copy of the script (preferably on disk),and a business-sized self-addressed stamped envelope. Materials can also be e-mailed to richard@petheatre.com. The selection committee will read only one script per playwright. Submissions must be postmarked by July 20.