Events & Education
The Dramatists Guild of America announces the thirteenth year of the Dramatists Guild Fellows program. Its mission is to enhance the sense of community among developing American dramatists by offering a year-long workshop designed to augment their training with practical experience and career information resources.
As the national association of playwrights, composers and lyricists, and the only organization devoted solely to the interests of artists writing for the theater (and with over 6,000 members), the Guild and its Council have created the Fellows Program to nurture the next generation of American dramatists. Our program is unique, not only in the kinds of opportunities it offers, but also because it brings together both playwrights and musical theater writers to discuss their work and common goals. Previous Dramatists Guild Fellows include Rajiv Joseph (Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, Pulitzer Prize finalist), Benj Pasek & Justin Paul (Dogfight, A Christmas Story), Neil Bartram (The Story of My Life), Deborah Zoe Laufer (End Days, ATCA Steinberg Award), and Amanda Yesnowitz (upcoming Somewhere in Time, Portland Center Stage).
Each year, we select a group of new theater writers for a program which provides continued support and training. The nine-month program includes group sessions with theater professionals, one-on-one mentoring, and opportunities to become interns or observers with dramatists involved in professional productions.
The program encourages playwrights, composers and lyricists to apply. This thirteenth season, we will select five playwriting fellows and five musical theater fellows. The musical theater fellows should apply as creative teams; those who write both music and lyrics would apply alone as a “self-contained” writer.
Twice a month we hold critiques, in which Fellows are encouraged to present their own work and discuss it with professionals as well as peers. These sessions are intended to sustain a sense of community among Fellows and other Guild members and to allow Fellows to explore creative and business issues, drawing on the professionals’ experience. Recent theater professionals attending Fellows sessions include Edward Albee, Stephen Sondheim, Kirsten Childs, Itamar Moses, Rajiv Joseph, Tracey Scott Wilson, Daniel Goldfarb, Carol Hall, Marsha Norman, Rachel Sheinkin, Liz Frankel, Todd London, Anne Kaufman, Ben Famiglietti, Tom Kitt, John Weidman, James Lapine, Lucy Simon, Terrence McNally, Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty, Eric Stern, and Bruce Coughlin.
Roundtable leaders Michael Korie and Diana Son and Program Director Andrea Lepcio facilitate the critique sessions and program planning. The Fellow (or musical theater team) will also work with a mentor in one-on-one meetings to discuss the Fellow’s ongoing projects and creative concerns. In order to properly take advantage of these unique opportunities, it is expected that applicants have New York residences for the duration of their Fellowship.
The Guild will also provide each Fellow with an internship/observership opportunity with a Guild member to observe pre-production, rehearsals or previews for an upcoming production, if possible. And, thanks to the generosity of the Dramatists Guild Fund, the Guild will be able to provide each Fellow with a modest stipend.