For the first time in 42 years, Salt Lake Acting Company will not produce its politically charged “Saturday’s Voyeur” comedy show.

While there’s no replacement for the in-person experience of lampooning life in Utah together, SLAC wants to give Utahns a much-needed laugh with a series of 10 short videos.

And it’s inviting you to be a scriptwriter.

The company is calling on comedy writer hopefuls to submit scripts for videos that SLAC’s cast and crew can produce from their homes. The videos, from one to three and a half minutes, will be released on SLAC’s blog and social channels, and will feature the 12 actors who were slated to perform in “Saturday’s Voyeur 2020.”

“I feel like our community needs a laugh so badly,” “Voyeur” actor Annette Wright said. “Yet we can’t get a crowd together to do it. [Not performing in person] is very odd, but I think the digital format is a great idea.”

The series, titled “We Got the Laughs,” will be free to watch, and will offer viewers a professionally produced distraction from COVID-19.

Aspiring playwrights and comedy writers can submit parody songs, political satires or any other idea they can think of. The only caveat is that submissions should aim to uplift and entertain audiences.

“Obviously, we’ve had to tap dance around the fact that this is a really tragic time and that people’s lives are being interrupted and, in some cases, lost,” said Justin Ivie, SLAC’s producing director and a “Voyeur” actor.

“At the same time, we want to make people laugh, so finding that line between joking about something that’s really sad while sharing our mourning together has been my biggest challenge,” he said.

Ivie is working on the series’ opening script, one that will include all 12 actors. Submissions need to be written for at least two actors, but writers can craft parts for the entire cast if they please.

SLAC canceled its entire summer season because of social distancing restrictions, creating a long break for actors.

Ivie said that the opportunity to perform is “invaluable, not only financially, because a lot of this cast is young people who are really reliant on small jobs to make ends meet, but also to keep artistically engaged. [The pandemic] has been really devastating to people who are trying to build their skills and work towards becoming full-time professionals.”

The actors and crew will not be the only ones to receive compensation for the project. Writers whose scripts make the cut will receive a stipend of $500.

“Throughout this process we’ve asked ourselves, how can Salt Lake Acting Company be a resource to a community who has given it so much?” said Executive Artistic Director Cynthia Fleming. “Everything we’re doing is a thank you to them.”

Fleming will direct the videos and has already begun brainstorming ways to ensure the sound quality and lighting are up to the company’s standards.

“This is not theater we’re doing,” she said. “We’re theater artists creating digital work, so it will require a lot of out-of-the-box thinking. We’re all stretching our creative muscles, so to speak.”

Ivie, who has spent his entire career acting on stage instead of in front of cameras, noted that acting for the series will require a new approach.

“I’m going to miss the live feedback from the audience — that immediate laughter or sigh or gasp,” he said. “You’re going to have to make up for that energy you’re missing because there aren’t people in the room with you.”

Actors who usually gathered around the piano to learn and rehearse their parts will have to learn choreographed dances and scenes via Zoom. It’s an intimidating prospect, especially since actors will be communicating on their own devices.

“All I have is a phone,” Wright said with a chuckle. “I don’t even have a laptop, but we’ll figure it out.”

Wright said she is “anxious to see how it’s received. How will the crowd respond to it? While they like it? Is it working? Because if it’s working, that gives us options for the future.”

Wright also offered advice for those who are considering submitting a script: “Be current, be clever and you should probably not write scenes for a lot of performers. You should write for two to four people, because it will be hard to write for a crowd of cast members.”

Scripts can be sent to cassie@saltlakeactingcompany.org, and the deadline for submissions is June 12. More information is available on saltlakeactingcompany.org.