Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company is proud to present the Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition for Greater Metro Atlanta area high school students, grades 9-12. This competition, coordinated by True Colors Theatre’s Director of Education, Nikki Toombs, focuses on the plays of August Wilson’s American Century Cycle, which chronicle the African American experience through the 20th century.  Each play is set in a different decade and is filled with soaring, lyrical monologues that take the song, laughter, pain, and rich content of African American life and places it in the mouths of the greatest and varied ensemble of characters written since Shakespeare.

The inspiration for the competition was sparked by two of August Wilson’s closest living collaborators, Kenny Leon and Todd Kreidler. Kenny Leon, the Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company, worked closely with Wilson; directing most of the Century Cycle plays on Broadway and at regional theatres.  Todd Kreidler,  former Associate Artistic Director for Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company, was Dramaturge for Wilson’s last play and Director of his one-man show.  As a result, both have intimate knowledge of August Wilson as an artist and as a person. According to Kreidler, “The goal of the competition is to help garner partnerships with communities, schools and theaters across the United States, and to create educational materials about August Wilson that allow students, of all races, to connect these important theatre works with educational curricula like history, social studies and literature.”

Above (LtoR): Raven Pace 1st , Ryan Lewis 2nd , Miguel Corado 3rd

Each student will perform a 1-3 minute monologue of his or her choosing from one of the ten plays in August Wilson’s Century Cycle. The selection can be a written speech or dialogue taken from one character within a scene, but should include a point-of-entry into the character and a personal connection to the selected material.  Contestants will be judged by a panel of Atlanta theatre professionals on the basis of preparedness, understanding of the text, emotional connection to the material, and commitment to the performance. Past judges have included V103’s Frank Ski and Wanda Smith, WABE’s Lois Reitzes, actor Jasmine Guy, CNN anchor Holly Firfer and NBA All-star Joe Barry Caroll. True Colors also offers free acting workshops and a compendium for teachers in order to prepare participants for the competition.

Registration for the 2017-2018 competition is currently open and will end on January 19, 2018.  For more information, please contact Adrie Keaton, Education Coordinator at  and
(404) 532-1901, ext. 214.

Above: Raven Pace, 1st Place Winner from Tri-Cities High School

Online Application

2018 Applications have closed.


City Wide Workshops

Click here to see a listing of workshop dates


Important Dates

  1. APPLICATION DEADLINE: Jan. 19, 2018
    Jan. 23rd
    -G.W. Carver (Columbus)
    Jan. 24th-Discovery High
    Jan. 25th-Academy of Richmond County (Augusta)
    Jan. 30th-Martha Ellen Stilwell School of the Arts
    Jan. 31st-Maynard Jackson High
    Feb. 1st-Heritage High
    Feb. 2nd-Spelman College
    Feb. 3rd-Kennesaw State University
    Feb. 6th-Savannah Arts Academy (Savannah)
  3. ATLANTA SEMI-FINALS Feb. 17, 2018 Benjamin E. Mays
  4. ATLANTA FINALS Mar 2, 2018-Southwest Arts Center 915 New Hope Rd. * Atlanta, GA 30331 

Other Information

  1. Media Release Form