Ubu Roi Bake-Off

Paula Vogel calls for a national UBU ROI Bake-Off to be performed on Presidents’ Day, Feb 19, 2018. Across the US and around the world, artists, theatres, and collectives will be writing in response to Alfred Jarry’s text and performing it live on Presidents’ Day in response to our global crisis. The Huntington Theatre Company and Boston Playwrights’ Theatre will host the Boston location for the Bake-Off.



What’s a Bake-Off?

A Bake-Off is a quickly-written exercise on an assigned theme, with assigned elements, that folks then write within a 48-hour period of time. Usually, Bake-Offs have a group participating, and when the 48 hours is up, the group gathers and reads the plays. Bake-Offs can be songs, poems, Dada, puppetry – anything! Paula Vogel has offered a play and articles or films on the Bake-Off topic online.

Here’s how it will work:

Paula Vogel posted the Bake-Off Ingredients on her webpage

February 14 at midnight - Register
February 17 at noon - Begin writing
February 19 at 3pm - Readings at the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA

How do you participate in the Boston UBU ROI Bake-Off?

  1. If you want to participate in writing a play and having it read on February 19 at the Calderwood Pavilion, please register here. Sign up by midnight, February 14. THERE WILL BE 20 SLOTS AVAILABLE FOR PLAYS TO BE READ THAT NIGHT IN BOSTON. There will also be a handful of stand-by slots in case all 20 plays don’t arrive in time.
  2. Again, you can now peruse the ingredients at Your plays must include all of the following:
    • Pa Ubu 45 (supposedly 6'3", a trim 239 lbs, in "excellent health". And yes, the hair is his and real.)
    • Ma Ubu: strangely catatonic when in Pa Ubu's company.
    • Angry Ambassadors from every country that Pa Ubu has insulted.
    • A strange use of the English language. That is, it sounds like it is supposed to be English. i.e. words for Sh#t are prolonged like pshitte (in French Merdre!! see *covefe below)
      A groveling, conniving, servile counselor who believes in conversion therapy for queers and trans & does not spend time in the company of women except his wife.
      A double-triple-quadruple-octahedral cheesburger with special sauce. Freedom Fries on the side.
      A usurpation.
    • Extra credit is:
      Enter a bear.
      Posters protesting Pa Ubu 45.
      Posters protesting protesters of Pa Ubu 45.
      "An unmentionable mop" i.e. a pshit-stick.
  3. On February 17 at NOON, begin the 48-hour process of writing the play – in the true spirit of Bake-Off: don’t start writing until that day!
  4. In order to accommodate performing 20 plays that evening, all plays must not be longer than 5 minutes long. If your play is longer, you can send us a 5-minute segment from the play that you’d like read. Instructions for submitting your play will be sent to playwrights who register.
  5. There will be a diverse cast of FOUR brilliant Boston actors (Steven Barkhimer, Cheryl McMahon, Lizzie Milanovich, and Marc Pierre) available to read your play that night and there are no guarantees about which actors will be reading which roles. The readings will be at music stands. If you need more than FOUR actors for your play, we will cast it on the spot out of volunteers from the audience. Part of the great fun and spontaneity of the event will be NO REHEARSAL and ALL INSTINCT – inspired by the immediacy of writing these plays. So get ready to write that play and turn it over to the spirit of the night!
  6. If you are interested in being in the audience to hear the plays, meet new artists, and cheer on your colleagues – reserve a maximum of two seats here.

A few reminders:

  • You do NOT have to be a professional playwright to participate in writing a play. This is a great opportunity to take your experience, leadership and gut instinct as an artist in this community…and make your voice heard!
  • In the Bake-Off section of Paula Vogel’s website, you’ll find a link to the scripts of both UBU ROI and MACBETH, as well as a few articles. For delicious inspiration.
  • A reminder to share this event on email, on social media, on your 10-minute break at rehearsal, at auditions, with your students, etc. The greater the diversity of voices, the more exciting and visceral the night will be. The landing page for all things UBU Boston will be , and as we get closer to the event, there will be updates posted on social media at: and Hashtags: #UbuBakeoff #UbuBakeoffBoston
  • If there are more plays than available slots…write the play anyway! Host a gathering in your living room! Take over a coffee shop or knitting circle or dorm lounge! Just make your voice heard!

We welcome your ideas. Offer applause! And do Bake-Offs. No Bake-Off is given criticism.




Avenue of the Arts / Huntington Avenue Theatre: 264 Huntington Avenue, Boston MA 02115
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA: 527 Tremont Street, Boston MA 02116
Main: 264 Huntington Avenue, Boston MA 02115 | 617 266 7900 | BOX OFFICE 617 266 0800

© 2018 Huntington Theatre Company. All rights reserved | Trouble viewing this site? Please download Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.