ADFA Rules & Regulations for Regional and Provincial Festivals

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1. The Alberta Drama Festival Association stages, in a different host community each year, a Provincial Adult One Act Drama Festival, which is the culmination of activities fostered by the Association at the Regional level. The dates and the location for the Provincial Festival are chosen by the Board of Directors of the Association.

2. The Alberta Drama Festival Association has identified the following regions for the mounting of Regional Festivals:

Peace Country
Big Valley

Each of these regions should hold a Regional Adult One Act Drama Festival of at least Two (2) plays, at least three (3) weeks prior to the Provincial Adult One Act Festival, if possible. A play from each Region shall then be selected to represent the Region at the Provincial Festival. Selection must be by adjudication.

3. The representative play from each Regional Festival must recognize its commitment to participate in the Provincial Festival. Final decisions on the entries in the Provincial Festival will be made by the Association Executive. The Association will pay the entry fee for the festival.

4. If a Region fails to mount a festival, it is expected that any entries from that Region will participate in the closest geographical Regional Festival. They will be judged on their own merits at this festival. If this is not possible, the Association Executive may, at its discretion, permit an entrant to proceed directly to the Provincial Festival.

5. A festival playbill may be augmented in order to present a more complete and varied program at the discretion of the Regional Representative for the Regional Festival, and with the approval of the Association Executive for the Provincial Festival.

6. Awards may be given at the discretion of the Association Executive, based on recommendations of the adjudicator, for merit in any aspect of the productions presented. This may also be done, based on the recommendations of the adjudicator, at the Regional Festival level. The award categories can include the following:
        Outstanding Production
        Outstanding Actor: this can be distributed to two individuals of any identifying gender
        Outstanding Technical Merit
        Outstanding Direction
        Outstanding New Work: A New Work is a piece that has never been published or previously produced.


1 Entries shall be one act plays. No adaptations or excerpts will be accepted.

2. All entries must have a running time of at least ten (10) minutes and not more than sixty (60) minutes.

3. Setup time for each play shall be limited to a maximum of ten (10) minutes; strike time shall be a maximum of five (5) minutes. A technical rehearsal time of not less than sixty minutes (60) minutes will be scheduled for each play.

4. Casts shall be predominantly adult and crews shall be predominantly adult. The plays may come from organized amateur theatre troupes, non-professional groups, higher educational institutions or any other community group or individual not involved in professional theatre. Any full member of a professional Performing Arts union is prevented from participating in ADFA sponsored one-act play festivals in the capacity covered by that union.

5. Each performing group will pay a non-refundable entry fee, $25.00 of which will make them a member of ADFA. Any individual wishing to have a vote at the AGM will have to purchase an individual membership of $5 which will be forwarded to the provincial treasurer. Entrants must sign registration forms stating that they have read and understood the festival rules.

6. Groups entering the regional festival and the selected entries in the provincial festival must provide a clean copy of the script for the adjudicators at least two weeks before the festivals.

7. The participants in a play entering any festival are responsible for supplying and transporting to and from the festival any set, furniture, properties, etc. (assistance with travel expenses will be considered by the executive upon presentation of a completed expense form)

8. The adjudicator shall select one play from each region to represent that region at the provincial festival. The adjudicator shall also rank order the other participating plays in case the chosen play cannot attend the provincial festival.

Last Revision: September, 2010


Reimbursement for Provincial and Regional Festivals are made on a Deficit Recovery basis.

ADFA will reimburse the hosting organization for expenses incurred over and above income for the following:

Ticket sales will be taken into consideration when reimbursing hosting groups.
Therefore a detailed financial statement will be required when applying for reimbursement.


Venue Rental
Promotions to a maximum of $1000.00
Adjudicator costs:
$300.00 per session plus accommodations and travel expenses. (session = a group of plays performed in one time period eg. Afternoon session, Evening session on one day would be 2 sessions. Performances on Thurs., Friday, and Saturday evenings would be 3 sessions.)

Awards (not cash): To a maximum of $500.00

Front of House: Tickets, programs, name tags etc. (Within reason)

For hosts of the PROVINCIAL FESTIVAL, ADFA will also cover the cost of Social expenses (participant dinners, green room socials etc)

For host groups who do not have the finances to cover expenses "up front" advances may be requested.

All expenses are subject to approval by the ADFA Board of Directors.

Cast and crew members of plays participating in the Regional and Provincial Festivals will be reimbursed for the following expenses, with Board approval, upon presentation of a completed expense form.

Cast and crew members of plays participating in the Regional and Provincial Festivals will be reimbursed for the following expenses, with Board approval, upon presentation of a completed form.

1. Accommodations shared accommodation (minimum 2 per room). Guests are welcome, but at their own expense.

2. Travel expenses at $.40 per kilometer , over 100 km one way to festival site. One vehicle per entry will be reimbursed only. Car-pooling is mandatory. Large casts may request through their Regional Representative for additional reimbursement.

3. A per diem of $50.00 per day (This per diem will be prorated if breakfast is provided with hotel room and if a banquet is provided for the participants)


The most important function of the adjudicator is to serve as an educator. True, he/she must recommend outstanding plays, but adjudication without a carefully prepared critique, which teaches as it criticizes, deprives play festival participants of a most valuable feature, opportunity for qualitative improvement.

An effective critique requires, among other things, extensive knowledge of all styles and types of drama, an understanding of the physical theatre with special concern for limitations often imposed upon the various performing areas in the province. The successful adjudicator must be able to discuss the plays he has seen in a firm but courteous manner. He/she must be objective, direct, and detailed in his criticism without imposing his opinions dictatorially.

The adjudicator has the special responsibility of evaluating seriously the efforts of the director and his/her company, and of treating them and their performances with respect. Through many hours of rehearsal they have sought to perfect creative performances not only to be a Regional representative, but for the satisfaction which comes through the search for perfection in the arts. The adjudicator must be familiar with the guidelines of the Alberta Adult One-Act Drama Festival and Alberta Drama Festival Association, and understand limitations imposed on directors. To treat such effort casually would defeat a most important function of the adjudicator.

The adjudicator should use his/her skills and experience to make each festival a pleasant and richly educational experience in the lives of participants as they seek to understand more fully the art of theatre.
Last Revision: April 2000



1. Adjudicator SHOULD:

a) Realize that you should be critically instructive. Help the director and actors with sound suggestions which they may use to improve their work.

b) Understand that most actors try as hard as they know to be effective.

c) Whenever possible, find something about the performance which you can honestly commend.

d) Be specific in criticizing the production and use of examples from it.

e) Keep your personal opinion of the playwright and script to yourself.

f) Request to stop the Festival if audience behavior makes it difficult for you to hear or concentrate on the performance.

2. Adjudicator SHOULD NOT:

a) At any time comment about the play. It may not be the best play for a particular cast to produce at a particular festival, but the adjudicator has no responsibility in a Festival to be publicly critical of the director's choice of play.

b) Criticize only in a negative way. Try to be constructive. It is your duty to help the director to improve their work.

c) Make a "performance" of your critique. Do not "act a role" before a captive audience.

d) Re-direct the plays. Suggestions are always in order, but let the director interpret them for his/her company and us them as he/she sees fit.

e) Embarrass the director before his company by sarcasm, ridicule, or remarks which in any way belittle him/her or his/her company.

f) Make any of the following remarks or similar remarks which may have the same effect:
"I didn't like your play."
"I would have done it this way."
"This play did not challenge the actors."
"You should have tried a newer play. This one has been done so often."
"What can you expect with a play by this author?"
"I'm so tired of seeing that play."

g) Spend critique time trying only to justify your decision.

h) Under any circumstances give play directors your worksheets or notes. If you care to provide a written critique, do so only after you have had time to carefully consider the written commentary and how it might be interpreted.
Last Revision: April 2000


a) Voice: Could you hear the actors distinctly? Was the rate too fast or too slow? Was there a variety of rate and inflection? Was pronunciation and articulation properly done for each character? If dialect was used, was it done correctly and naturally?

b) Characterization: Was there a complete bodily and mental recreation of the character by the actor? Were his reactions to other actors correct and effective? Did we "believe" the actor's characterization all the time he was on the stage?

c) Movement: Were the movements of the actor in keeping with the character? Was there a great deal of random movement? Was the pantomime accurate and convincing? Did the actor have a well-controlled body?

d) Contrast: Were there clearly contrasting moods in the dialogue? Were emotional transitions natural and effective? Were the lines delivered in a manner natural to the characters in the play?

e) Ensemble: Was there a smoothness of action which indicates adequate rehearsal and close cooperation and understanding of the play among the actors?

f) Timing: Did the actors pick up cues properly? Was the production static in places because the actors seemed to lack a correct sense of pace?

g) Motivation: Was there a logical reason for all business and movement by the actors which was consistent and in keeping with the characters in the script.

a) Set: Did the set satisfactorily represent the idea of the play? Were the furniture and props used in a way which assisted but did not hinder the action?

b) Lighting: Did the lighting effects blend harmoniously and unobtrusively into the action of the play?

c) Make-up: Was the make-up natural and in keeping with each character and style of production?

d) Costume: Were the costumes for each character correct as to color, style, and period?

e) Business: Were exits and entrances properly timed? Did the actors frequently cover or block each other? Was the business properly motivated? Was the designed business adequate to bring out the idea of the play?

f) Tempo: Did the production drag? Was it too fast to follow intelligently? Was the pace of the production in keeping with the general idea of the script?

g) Picturization and Composition: Were the actors grouped to give proper emphasis to the right characters at the right time?

h) Plot: Was the dramatic action of the script clear?

i) Theme: Was the main idea of the play brought out clearly?

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