Mission & History

With its beginnings in 1912 as the Authors’ League of America, the Dramatists Guild of America now serves over 7,000 playwrights, composers, lyricists, and librettists.

Our members range from beginning writers to the most prominent authors represented on Broadway, off-Broadway, and in regional theaters nationwide.

The Guild maintains model contracts for all levels of productions, (including Broadway, regional, and smaller theaters) and encourages its members to use these contracts when negotiating with producers. These contracts embody the Guild’s overarching objectives of protecting the dramatist’s control over the content of their work, and ensuring that the dramatist is compensated for each use of their work in a way which will encourage them to continue writing for the living stage.

In addition to its contract services, the Guild acts as an aggressive public advocate for dramatists’ interests and assists dramatists in developing both their artistic and business skills through its publications, which are distributed nationally, and the educational programs which it sponsors around the country.

The current President of the Dramatists Guild is Doug Wright (War Paint, I Am My Own Wife, Grey Gardens), with Lisa Kron (Fun Home, Well) serving as Vice President, Lynn Nottage (Ruined, Sweat) as Secretary, and Julia Jordan (Murder Ballad) as Treasurer.

Past presidents have included Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein, Moss Hart, Alan Jay Lerner, Robert Sherwood, Robert Anderson, Frank Gilroy, Peter Stone, John Weidman, and Stephen Schwartz.

Past Guild members have included Eugene O’Neill, George S. Kaufman, Maya Angelou, Mary Rodgers, Arthur Miller, Lillian Hellman, Frank Loesser, Ray Bradbury,  Lorraine Hansberry, Frederick Loewe, Alice Childress, Donna Summer, Edward Albee, and Tennessee Williams.