The 2014 Writes of Spring, a collaborative writing and theatrical production involving the UCF Theatre for Young Audiences, will be presented April 22-23 at the Orlando Repertory Theatre (REP).

The 11th annual event is a writing contest designed to support literacy and promote creative expression. Each year The REP accepts writing submissions from kindergarten through 12th grade students. The top entries are used to create an original play using the students’ words and ideas. The script is produced by The REP and UCF graduate students, and winning writers will be recognized at the performance and post-show celebration.

For this year’s free event, 1,457 entries were submitted as short stories, essays and poems completing this phrase: “When I look to the future, I see…”

From the 120 winners selected, Sara Brunow, Jason Gerhard and Tara Kromer wrote the play Futurocity.

“Writes of Spring is a fun and challenging experience, both for the students who provide the entries and the theatre artists who develop the resulting performance,” said Brunow. “As a playwright and director, I have carefully studied the words, themes, and characters that have been conjured from the students’ imaginations; now I am fitting it together like a jigsaw puzzle. The outcome will be a carefully constructed ball of creativity, celebrating the ingenuity of our young writers. Every Writes of Spring experience is surprising and rewarding.”

Gerhard said the event gives young writers a chance to be heard.

“This year’s Writes of Spring has given voice to some of the many doors waiting to be unlocked. It is this grand sense of fear and excitement that we aim to capture this year,” he said.

Performances of Futurocity will be at 7 p.m. Tickets may be reserved by calling the box office at 407-896-7365. The Orlando Repertory Theatre is at 1001 E. Princeton St., Orlando.

“The exciting thing about Writes of Spring this year is the unique collaborative process that we are engaged in,” said Kromer. “We not only have the privilege to work with the students’ words and to be inspired by their input through our Winners’ Workshops, but we are able to work as playwrights and directors, creating three unique interpretations of three unique short plays which will bring life to the words of our young writers.“