Saturday, September 30, 2017

A Season of Disaster

In case you're keeping score, the Republicans are horrible in crisis and merely awful in normal times. They are not capable of devising sensible policy, fixing healthcare, controlling our borders, restoring the middle class, bringing back the white male fantasyland they tout, respecting women, caring for the sick and elderly, regarding people of color as humans, or acting in good faith. This is not an accident. Their abominable and wretched behavior is by design. This is a party bent on looting every single ounce of value from this country behind the facade of racism, homophobia, and misogyny. They are not here for Puerto Rico, New Orleans, Miami, Houston, or even Alabama. The Republicans are political pirates who are here to plunder your property and your information. They are ghouls of our unfettered greed and hate. They are here to debase, destroy, and sell. They are the walking and talking toxic waste of white supremacy and capitalism.


What is my part in this? It's easy for me to condemn 'them' or those people. It feels righteous and superior to not only have the ammunition of words, but the vindication of history. But this is not enough. Grudgingly I have to accept responsibility for what I see before me. Yes, even Trump and the GOP. The debasement I see being enacted is -karmically- coming from my own deeds. The destruction I am witnessing is coming from my own actions, words, and thoughts. I live in a world that has a lot of benefits, but that also has a lot of tragedy. I play a part in my world. All of it.

This changes my response to racist. I condemn the action, but I can only fix it by refraining from similar deeds. My own prejudice has ripened before my eyes. It is horrible. I have to fix it, and I will. 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Original Sin

The sad thing is that one-half of our two-party system has created a propaganda infrastructure to blatantly and consistently lie and bait the American public on their fears, stall all government procedures, pillage national assets, and create wars to acquire materials that go toward enriching the already sheltered and ungodly class of wealthy oligarchs. And then they find likeminded candidates on every level who are capable of selling things they know do not work and -in some cases- kills people for short-term profit. In short, it's a con game that depends upon constantly shifting and misdirecting people's anger toward new targets every year. Yes, this is the Republican party. In almost every single policy issue -economics, gun violence, income inequality, environment, defense- we have one party which practices the most Orwellian tactics of confusing an undereducated population of people and then finding a fear-trigger to get them to act irrationally. I'm not saying 'you have your opinion and i have mine.' I am saying that every Republican policy implemented has had catastrophic consequences on the avg person. Statistically. Trickle-down economics, getting rid of gun control, deregulating every gov oversight board, waging the war on drugs, reducing rehabilitation and treatment in favor punishment, destroying unions, privatizing utilities, increasing pollution of water and air. And this happens nationally, state, local and for every single facet of policy. Trump is merely the 40 yr nadir of repacking the same awful greed and destructive hate as patriotism and christianity. And the biggest lie is still the first one this nation: race. When Trump talks about inner cities without any awareness of the conservative policies that were created solely to isolate, disenfranchise, and kill its inhabitants he is speaking from the slickest and most pernicious form of American racism. He cares about the inner cities as much as I care about Xanadu. It's merely a way of speaking to racist whites who are blind to the systemic re-enforcement of their bias. When he mentions roving gangs of violent illegal immigrants, he is embracing the white fragility of supremacists who both claim to be evolutionarily better than others but at the same time are so delicate that they must be shielded from hordes of brown bodies. He is speaking in a way to justify white people's bleak view of black and brown life and communities: hellish, unbearable, and having nothing to do with whiteness. He is speaking to America's original sin without ever acknowledging the causes and just jumping to the worst-case nightmares in white people's imagination.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Kaepernick and the Cuck Conservatives

NFL owners thought that by blackballing Colin Kaepernick, they would make the issue go away. This is from the same retro-conservative school of cucks that believed they could stop rock n' roll by smashing their records, or they could limit rap music if they held Congressional hearings on it, or if the gov allowed urban areas to be drugged then the poison wouldn't spread to the suburbs, or if you demonized black bodies white kids wouldn't obsess over controlling/fetishizing/ fantasizing/transforming themselves into those same bodies (Hi, Kardashians!!)

America: you will continue to be mentally, politically, and artistically cuckolded by your own fears. Colin Kaepernick was a mid-level QB who had two good years of football. He would have faded away into obscurity if no one begrudged him his first amendment rights. Now he is going to be placed alongside Muhammad Ali and Jim Brown in the pantheon of political athletes.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

City of Poets

I was writing in the Signature Theatre lobby when my phone rang from an unfamiliar number. The area code was listed as Toa Alta, Puerto Rico. I thought they didn't have any power. I answered it and the voice on the other end greeted me "Buenas tarde." I tried to say something, but he couldn't hear me. "Hello...hello...hello...' Finally he hung up. I looked up Toa Alta. The city was founded in 1751. It is known as La Cuna de Poetas (birthplace of poets). A wall of water smashed into the northern city and it is gone.

I called the number back. It rang and rang and rang. It is still probably ringing out there to someone.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Shade Trade: Conversations and Situations

Two Guys at the Gym

Guy 1: I made steak, carne asada, and sloppy Joe's
Guy 2: did you get a colonoscopy after that? That's a lot of meat.
Guy 1: I like dark meat. But you know that. Remember.
Guy 2: I am trying to forget.
Guy 1: then you must've bumped your head.
Guy2: I did. Running out of the room, away from you.
Guy 1: well l bumped your head against a wall. But that was in church.
Guy 2: ....



A homeless couple shoved their carts onto the subway and pushed a black woman in front of me. 

HER: Crazy ppl are following me around today. I can't wait to get home. I'm nice until ppl aren't nice to me.
ME: You gotta protect yourself.
HER: I know how to do that. I was in the military.
ME: Army, Navy. Air Force?
HER: Army. I was in Baghdad. 2003.
ME: What was that like?
HER: Hell. It was like in the movies: explosions, bodies in the street, fire fights.
HER: Yes. I saw one of my friends get his head cut off.
*subway stop*
HER: All right, this is my stop. Have a good night.


"Everyone is sucking white d*%k in Hollywood."
- movie exec at dinner (they said I could quote them.)


Hurricane Prep

Me: We need some sort of hurricane system that can bring up a wall of cool water up to the ocean's surface. Maybe that would weaken a hurricane.
Mom: There should be a way to build a mobile cool mountain in the ocean, and when a hurricane comes you just raise up the mountain and bust up the storm.
Me: ...isn't that a beer commercial?


"Who represents Victor Hugo?"
-an agent running down the hallway


sitcom idea

neurotically high-strung Sean Spicer is about to settle into his petite Boca Raton condo with shag carpeting in the sunken living room when *KNOCK KNOCK*...who is there? It's the flip-flop wearing, Trump towel boy and national air guitar qualifier: Anthony Scaramucchi!! A corrupt realtor sold both disgraced WH staffers the same condo before declaring bankruptcy. It looks like Spicer's 'quiet and peaceful' retirement is about to take a Mooch-Turn. But wait, the Scara-Sean duo start getting visits every week from a recently fired/resigned White House staffers and EPA 'egg-head' scientists who are trying to get back on their feet... and warn of the 'end times.' The pad becomes a detox/recovery half-way house and party pad for Mooch's air guitar rock band "Why Did I Sell My Company and Abandon My Pregnant Wife For This Terrible Terrible Fate, Hootie?" Mooch and Spicey help rehabilitate the bruised and battered DC elites in between arguments over who ate the last frozen pizza and trying to figure out if this the eco-apocalypse? But if this is going to be the end of the planet, Spicey-Mooch discover that there is nowhere else they'd rather meet their gruesomely hilarious demise...than in each other's arms (Awwwww....shit). "Two Men and a Condo."


Elizabeth Kemp: Eulogy

Rest in peace to one of the best teachers of art and life. Elizabeth Kemp was my first-year acting professor. She taught me and a bunch of other ragtag actors, writers, and directors new to NYC. Her classes delved into animal work, circle/mirror dance, private moments, sense memory, green light, and our own personal loss and betrayal that was buried under layers of armor. I found her method to be devastating, transformational, therapeutic, maddening, inspiring. Students would break down in her class, and it was't because she was cruel or abusive or demanding some emotional exhibitionism for credit. We would break down because she set the space for us to be honest with ourselves. It was a space where we could let our guard down, and that's when the emotional floodgates would burst open into pain, rage, laughter, joy, and ecstasy. I performed a painting monologue inspired by a Van Gogh self-portrait which diverged off into my own abuse and voyeurism. I and other students shared private moments that we had kept secret from our closest friends and family in that class. Next door, actors were raging and unleashing themselves in rehearsal for a new Stephen Adly Guirgis play: "Our Lady of 121st Street." The space was teeming with that sort of NYC raw vitality and newness. The green light meditation physiologically changed me. It altered me and maybe it's the reason I went from being an atheist to a Buddhist. I saw how applied spirit could change my own mind and the world by watching Elizabeth Kemp. Thank you Master, Professor, soul sister, warrior, actor, therapist, soothsayer, storyteller, director, poet, dancer, and artist. We love you Elizabeth.

Sean Spicer and the Monstrosity of Mediocre Men

Hillary Clinton isn't welcome to the table, but Sean Spicer is greeted with smiles and laughter. There ain't nothing more American than white liberals kicking POC, gays, and women to the ground, while giving a wink and a nod to the most hideous and brazen liars. Trump can host SNL in the middle of a campaign geared toward Nazis, Bannon can get a primetime spot on "60 minutes," and Spicer can sit up at the Emmys cheesing for the cameras, but Clinton needs to pull an "Arsenio" and fade away. The clown car of cultural deplorables is holding a parade of death, terror, lies, and idiocy on your street and in your phone.

There is unrest in St. Louis, cops are literally bragging about killing people and then doing it, and voting rights are actively being suppressed for black people in order to destroy one of the pillars of our democracy...but it's all good b/c Spicer is a goofball Nazi sympathizer who looks like the lost member of "The Little Rascals." ESPN's Jemele Hill needs to apologized and be fired for calling Trump a racist on her private Twitter account, but Trump can physically threaten Clinton and laugh it off. Chelsea Manning is a traitor, but Sean Spicer is just a lovable, naughty boy who can't help himself. Kathy Griffin needs to be condemned for taking a picture, but the Trump campaign can spend a year directly talking about assassinating Clinton or torturing her in Guantanamo, and then these people are brought into the White House for drinks. And 53% of white women think that being 'shrill' is more destructive than being a racist, raping, lying, treasonous, money-laundering famemonster.

Intersectionality is a motherfucker. 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

On a Tuesday Night

Shock opened up a quilted bag and flung his iguana on the subway floor. Passengers were intrigued. A biker looked confused, a punk guy put down his Neil Gaiman book to stare. Shock yelled out 'Who. Has. A. Cigarette?' A few yards away a drunk woman announced 'Hey everyone! My name is Taylor. It's my 21st birthday. So if everyone could sing 'Happy Birthday' and I'll start.' Stuck in between the slithering iguana, high Shock, and a drunk singing Taylor, me and other NYCers made droll eye contact and confirmed: 'Been there. Done that.' Taylor and subway friends finished the song and she walked over to the iguana named Bowser. Taylor and Shock greeted each other. Taylor sat on the floor and picked up Bowser while talking to Shock. They exchanged phone numbers. A drunk white woman, a high Black man, and a confused iguana share a post-racial, post-reptile bonding moment. Is this the acid trip version of MLK's dream? Strangely enough, this was not the most unusual part of my day.

Earlier in the evening I walked out of a musical at intermission. The singing was great, the music was really strong, but the story bored me, and the characters were caricatures. I was in the East Village so I decided to stop by some of my old spots for a drink. I ended up at a gay bar on a lazy Tuesday night. I thought it would be nice to have a drink, talk with a few people, and head home. When I arrived, the bar was sparsely crowded. I started talking with one guy who wanted to give me a blowjob. He offered his services every few minutes or so, as if I would suddenly change my mind if he just kept asking. I smiled and told him I was just there to hang out. Two guys sat down next to me named Luv and Elvis. Luv was from an island off Madagascar and working in NYC finance. We spoke for a bit and the overly eager Mr. BJ would stop by every once and a while to see if I had changed my mind.

As I was preparing to go, Mr. BJ said 'you can't leave. The party hasn't even started.' What party? It's a lazy Tuesday night. He said that in a few minutes a black curtain would be pulled across the floor, separating the front area from the back area. In the back area it would be sexual pandemonium. I weighed my choices: sleep or sexual pandemonium. I decided to stay and watch what happened. Sure enough, the curtain was drawn and the action started in the bathroom. Then some go go boys started dancing on the table and gyrating in our faces. Luv received extra special attention. One of the go go boys went off with a patron to the bathroom. The energy was picking up and I age. In the past, the night's sights and sounds would have thrilled me. Now, I just saw sorrow, both my own and others. On top of that, there was a Puritanical exasperation at the timing of it the revelry: all this on a Tuesday night?!?' I nodded to Mr. BJ and told him to enjoy the festivities. He was an MTA subway conductor and didn't have to work on Wednesday. I hope he found the right crotch to bury his face into for a minute. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Blue Notes

It's a wet, foggy night. Ideas are exploding in my head. I'm writing in the book margins, taking pictures, and making notes in my phone. We're on a boat that is circumnavigating Manhattan. A DJ is upstairs on the ferry's second floor, but just as many people are at the bow where it's cold, windy, and soaked. People are standing in the rain and looking out. It's good to touch the night every once and a while. it helps to make the light that much brighter when juxtaposed against the darkest hollow. That's the blues of the black experience. The saddest people in the world are the ones who maintain a hysterical happiness: the hyena laughter, the vapid smile, the neurotic nods toward nostalgia, twitching toothy grins. The night is a necessary recalibration in nature and in the soul. When I get 'the blues' I tap into the encircling sorrow. I ride the midnight streams that surround the bright islands. Who needs drugs? I get high off the blue notes.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Get What You Want: September 2017

Radcliffe Institute at Harvard Fellowship (playwrights, poets, fiction writers can apply)
Deadline: September 14th

Radcliffe Institute is accepting fellowship applications from the creative arts until September 14th. Fellows receive office or studio space and access to libraries and other resources of Harvard University during the fellowship year, which extends from early September 2018 through May 31, 2019.

Stipends are funded up to US$75,000 with additional funds for project expenses.Stipends are funded up to $75,000 for one year with additional funds for project expenses. Some support for relocation expenses is provided where relevant. If so directed, Radcliffe will pay the stipend to the fellow’s home institution. We work with fellows who have families to help with relocation issues for a smooth transition.

Each of the more than 850 fellows who have been in residence at the Radcliffe Institute has pursued an independent project, but the collaborative experience unites all of them. Scholars, scientists, and artists work on individual projects, or in clusters, to generate new research, publications, art, and more.

Applications in all academic disciplines, professions, and creative arts are encouraged, and there are a few areas of special interest:

Applications related to the theme of citizenship—local, national, and global—which is a two-year initiative across the programs of the Radcliffe Institute
Applications that involve the study of women, gender, and society, which is a commitment rooted in Radcliffe’s unique history
Applications that draw on the resources of the Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, which is part of the Radcliffe Institute and one of the foremost archives on women’s history

Fellows receive office or studio space and access to libraries and other resources of Harvard University during the fellowship year. Visual artists and film, video, sound, and new media artists may apply to come for either one or two semesters. In the event that they come for one semester, the stipend is $37,500. Fellows are expected to be free of their regular commitments so they may devote themselves full time to the work outlined in their proposal. Since this is a residential fellowship, we expect fellows to reside in the Boston area during that period and to have their primary office at the Institute so that they can participate fully in the life of the community.

MacDowell Colony
Deadline: Sept 15th

The MacDowell Colony provides time, space, and an inspiring environment to artists of exceptional talent. A MacDowell Fellowship, or residency, consists of exclusive use of a studio, accommodations, and three prepared meals a day for up to eight weeks. There are no residency fees.

MacDowell Fellows are selected by our admissions panels, which are comprised of a revolving group of distinguished professionals in each artistic discipline who serve anonymously for three years.

The Colony accepts applications from artists working in the following disciplines: architecture, film/video arts, interdisciplinary arts, literature, music composition, theatre, and visual arts. The sole criterion for acceptance is artistic excellence, which the Colony defines in a pluralistic and inclusive way. MacDowell encourages applications from artists representing the widest possible range of perspectives and demographics, and welcomes artists engaging in the broadest spectrum of artistic practice and investigating an unlimited array of inquiries and concerns. To that end, emerging as well as established artists are invited to apply.

MacDowell is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination and equal opportunity for all persons regardless of race, sex, color, religion, creed, national origin or ancestry, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and disability. No one with the AIDS virus, ARC, or HIV shall be denied admission as long as he/she is otherwise qualified. The Colony offers barrier-free access in all main buildings and some studios.

Playwrights First
Deadline: September 15th

Playwrights First consists of a panel of judges looking for original unproduced plays with a unique point of view, founded by Carolyn French.
Requires one, original, unproduced play in English. Hard copies no longer accepted. No adaptions, translations, or musicals will be accepted. Include a summary of your playwriting history with your play.  $1,000 grant and a professional reading when feasible.

ABOG Fellowship for Socially Engaged Art
deadline: September 18th

We are looking at the process and relationships of socially engaged art projects.

We see the aesthetic qualities of socially engaged art here—in how alliances are formed and maintained, the way disparate stakeholder groups are coordinated, how power dynamics are navigated, and how bridges are built between many different types of people in a socially engaged art project.

We create content that illuminates and deepens understanding of these relationships. A primary goal of ABOG is to make the “invisible” parts of socially engaged art visible. We do this through documentary films and field research that are artist-led, and are grounded in the perspective of project participants, as well as publications, web content, and public programming.

We also use this focus on process and relationships to advocate for a more expanded sense of what art is, how artists can work in communities, and how art might be integrated into everyday life. Our field research, documentary films, and other content serve as the basis for curriculum, toolkits, and consulting that enable more artists to work in partnership with non-artist stakeholders.

The deadline to apply is September 18, 2017, 11:59 PM (EST)

Fellowship projects become the focus of:
A short, engaging documentary film directed and produced by RAVA Films
Field research that utilizes action research methodology
Web content and public programs
A biennial publication
Curriculum and advocacy that advance the field of socially engaged art
Two dedicated opportunities to engage a cohort of peer artists

To realize this partnership, artists receive $20,000 in minimally restricted support.

Issue-Based Fellowships
ABOG-David Rockefeller Joint Fellowship in Criminal Justice

This fellowship examines the transformational roles artists play in a criminal justice context.
Applicants working in criminal justice are automatically considered.

ABOG Fellowship for Contemplative Practice, in partnership with the Hemera Foundation

This fellowship supports artists who work with the intersection of social practice and contemplative practice.
Applicants who would like to be considered will be asked to answer two supplementary questions in the online submission form. Click here to learn more and read FAQs.

Princeton Arts Fellowship
Deadline: September 19th

The Princeton Arts Fellowship, funded in part by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will be awarded to artists whose achievements have been recognized as demonstrating extraordinary promise in any area of artistic practice and teaching. An $80,000 a year stipend is provided.

Applicants should be early career composers, visual artists, conductors, musicians, choreographers, filmmakers, performers, directors, or performance artists—this list is not meant to be exhaustive—who would find it beneficial to spend two years working in an artistically vibrant university community. Princeton Arts Fellows spend two consecutive academic years (September 1-July 1) at Princeton University and formal teaching is expected. The normal work assignment will be to teach one course each semester subject to approval by the Dean of the Faculty, but fellows may be asked to take on an artistic assignment in lieu of a class, such as directing a play or creating a dance with students. Although the teaching load is light, our expectation is that Fellows will be full and active members of our community, committed to frequent and engaged interactions.
Fellowships are not intended to fund work leading to an advanced degree. One need not be a U.S. citizen to apply.  Holders of Ph.D. degrees from Princeton are not eligible to apply.

Princeton Hodder Fellowship
Deadline: September 19th

The Hodder Fellowship will be given to artists and writers of exceptional promise to pursue independent projects at Princeton University during the academic year. Potential Hodder Fellows are writers, composers, choreographers, visual artists, performance artists, or other kinds of artists or humanists who have “much more than ordinary intellectual and literary gifts”; they are selected more “for promise than for performance.” Given the strength of the applicant pool, most successful Fellows have published a first book or have similar achievements in their own fields; the Hodder is designed to provide Fellows with the “studious leisure” to undertake significant new work. Fellowships are for one academic year and provide the opportunity to pursue an independent project. Hodder Fellows spend an academic year (September 1-July 1) at Princeton, but no formal teaching is involved.

Fellowships are not intended to fund work leading to an advanced degree. One need not be a U.S. citizen to apply.  An $80,000 stipend is provided for this 10‐month appointment.

Brooklyn Arts Fund
Deadline: September 20th

The Brooklyn Arts Fund aims to cultivate Brooklyn’s artists, arts organizations, and audiences through its support of performances, exhibitions, pop-up galleries, workshops, reading series, festivals, public art and more, all across the borough. This program is appropriate for arts and culture makers developing projects that contribute to the rich creative experiences that engage audiences all across the borough. Competitive applicants will clearly identify the audience they strive to reach, and articulate how the project’s outcome(s) will impact the cultural life of the borough. 

This program is appropriate for arts and culture makers developing projects that contribute to the rich creative experiences that engage audiences all across the borough. Competitive applicants will clearly identify the audience they strive to reach, and articulate how the project’s outcome(s) will impact the cultural life of the borough. Brooklyn-based 501c3 organizations and individual artists with Brooklyn residency may apply directly to this program. Program areas of funding include: dance, film/video/media, folk arts, interdisciplinary arts literary arts, multi-disciplinary projects, music/opera, theater/musical theater, performing arts community education and visual arts/crafts.

Funding is made possible through the generous support of the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) in partnership with the New York City Council and Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. Additional support is provided by MetroPlus Health Plan.

*Applicants must download and review all application materials from prior to beginning an application. All applications must be submitted online.
Request: $2,000-$5,000
Applicant eligibility*: Brooklyn-based artists, artist collectives and Brooklyn-based 501c3 organizations that do not receive funding directly from DCLA are invited to apply.
Project eligibility*: High-quality local performing, visual, literary, interdisciplinary and/or multi-disciplinary arts projects that engage a diverse array of Brooklyn’s communities. All proposals must show other sources of income for at least 10% of the overall budget.

Visit for complete guidelines and a downloadable PDF of application questions, for your reference. In order to apply, you will need to scroll down and create an account with Submittable.

Breckenridge Creative Arts: Tin Shop and Robert Whyte House Residency
Deadline: September 29th

Breckenridge Creative Arts seeks to present innovative work that is new to Breckenridge and Colorado. BCA encourages applications from artists representing the widest possible range of perspectives and demographics, and welcomes artists engaging in the broadest spectrum of artistic practice.

With excellence, diversity, and relevance as core values of BCA, our goal is to continue to introduce the Breckenridge community and its guests to the works of regional, national, and international artists of the highest caliber. A multi-layered programming team guides BCA’s artistic vision and curatorial framework. Our experienced team of arts professionals shapes the artistic quality of programming selected to ensure the highest international standard while truly reflecting the unique character of Breckenridge.

The Tin Shop and Robert Whyte House provide opportunities for artists to live and work on the Breckenridge Arts District campus. Artists are invited to stay for a minimum of two weeks and up to several months, depending on program needs. Each facility features a fully furnished studio apartment upstairs and a low-tech working studio on the main level. Artists are selected based on the excellence of their work and public participation abilities. Our guest artist programs provide time and space for artists to work in mediums of their choice. In return, we ask that artists host open studio hours and workshops that engage all facets of the community, including the local school district.

Support: Private housing; Wireless internet connection provided in living area; Spouses/partners allowed for full stay; Children allowed for full stay; There are many opportunities for artists to earn income during their residency through workshops, educational programs, lectures, and demos. Artists may have the opportunity to exhibit their work at a local gallery.
Costs: There is no charge for artists to stay at the Tin Shop. Artists are responsible for all transportation costs, food and materials for personal work.

2018-2019 Cullman Center Fellowship
Deadline: September 29th (now open)

The Cullman Center’s Selection Committee awards up to 15 fellowships a year to outstanding scholars and writers—academics, independent scholars, journalists, and creative writers. Foreign nationals conversant in English are welcome to apply. Candidates who need to work primarily in The New York Public Library's other research libraries—the Library for the Performing Arts, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and the Science, Industry and Business Library—are not eligible for this fellowship, nor are people seeking funding for research leading directly to a degree.

The Cullman Center looks for top-quality writing from academics as well as from creative writers and independent scholars. It aims to promote dynamic communication about literature and scholarship at the very highest level—within the Center, in public forums throughout the Library, and in the Fellows’ published work.

A Cullman Center Fellow receives a stipend of up to $70,000, an office, a computer, and full access to the Library's physical and electronic resources. Fellows work at the Center for the duration of the fellowship term, which runs from September through May. Each Fellow gives a talk over lunch on current work-in-progress to the other Fellows and to a wide range of invited guests, and may be asked to take part in other programs at The New York Public Library.

UCROSS Foundation Residency
Deadline: October 1st

Artists, writers and composers from around the United States and the world, in all stages of their professional careers, are invited to apply to work on individual or collaborative projects. Fellows are chosen by a panel of professionals in the arts and humanities in a highly competitive application process.  The quality of an applicant's work is given primary consideration.  Final invitations for residencies are extended at the discretion of the Ucross Foundation.

There are two residency sessions annually. Application deadlines are March 1 for Fall Session, which runs from August through the first Friday in December, and October 1 for Spring Session, which runs from March through the first Friday in June.  Residencies vary in length from two to six weeks. Applications are only accepted by online submission.

To apply, each applicant must complete a Ucross Foundation Residency Application Form and provide the required materials, including two letters of recommendation, a project description and a work sample as described in the Application Guidelines. There is a $40 nonrefundable application fee.  There is no fee for a residency.

Current work is requested. The nature of the work sample submitted should correspond to the nature of the work you propose to do while in residence. An applicant's work sample is the most significant feature of his or her application. Unless work is interdisciplinary, i.e., the various genres interconnect, each applicant is encouraged to apply in a primary discipline and submit a work sample and project description, which emphasizes this single discipline. Competition for residencies varies seasonally and with the number of applications.

WORK SAMPLE: should be representative of the genre in which you plan to work while in residence. Writing samples should be double-spaced. Appropriate samples are as follows:

PLAYWRITING: one complete play*

SCREENWRITING: one complete screenplay*

New Harmony
deadline: October 1st

The New Harmony Project offers two types of residency. Writers in Full Development are joined by a full cast and creative team, and spend the conference working on one specific project, hand-picked following a rigorous selection process. Writers in Residence are offered support to work on multiple projects, and afforded the freedom and flexibility to immerse themselves in their own personal process.

Submissions are being accepted online through October 1, 2017, and invited participants will be notified in early 2018. Those interested in applying can visit The New Harmony Project website ( for more information and full submission requirements. The New Harmony Project is committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion, and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or any other basis of discrimination prohibited by law.

What is The Project looking for in a script? If you’ve read our mission statement and you’re still not sure your work is right for NHP, you can gain a fuller sense of our aesthetic and philosophical interests by perusing our roster of writers and scripts that have recently found an artistic home at our conference. The New Harmony Project recognizes that we live in complex times, and we seek stories that honor a multiplicity of perspectives.

Please complete the form below and submit the following materials for consideration for The New Harmony Project’s 2018 Conference:

Statement of artistic purpose (including a brief history of the script, and what you hope to achieve in development with The Project)
-Ten-page dialogue sample (From the work you are submitting)
-Full script
-If you are submitting a musical, please upload a 3-5 minute music sample
-If possible, please combine all documents into a single PDF or DOC (or as few documents as possible). Once items have been submitted, we, unfortunately, will not be able to accept updates or changes. If you have any questions, please email We look forward to reading your work, and thank you for taking the time to share it with us.

For 32 years, The Project has inspired a community of artists dedicated to this mission, motivated by a desire to support stories of hope, optimism, and the resiliency of the human spirit. The New Harmony Project is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. For information on how to support this unique and worthwhile organization, please visit, or follow us on social media.

The O’Neill Center: 2017 National Playwrights Conference
Deadline (window): Sept 14- Oct 14th

If you are interested in applying, please look over the materials and sign up to receive email updates about the National Playwrights Conference. As soon as we post our 2016 application, you will be the first to know.

The National Playwrights Conference strives to create a supportive environment that empowers playwrights to their own process and to experience the play with a professional company.
In the years since its inception the National Playwrights Conference has developed more than 600 plays.  During the Conference, playwrights live on the grounds of the O'Neill for a full month and each engages in a week-long process of rehearsals culminating in two script-in-hand public readings.  Up to eight playwrights are selected for this intensive laboratory each summer.  Conference playwrights represent a wide range of experience from those working on a first play to Broadway veterans; directors and actors have also worked on and off Broadway, in film, and in regional theaters, and represent emerging artists and seasoned professionals.
Each year NPC accepts scripts from any playwright for consideration in its summer landmark event, and takes this solicitation and selection process very seriously. We do not require an agent or nomination to apply, simply the right to work in the United States.
The O'Neill typically receives approximately 1,000 scripts during this month-long window. The plays are sent to readers across the country; the work is read blindly and narrowed down into a semi-finalist pool and then a finalist pool. This process is maintained by our on-site literary office and is monitored carefully.

You must be 18 years of age and have the right to work within the United States.
The play must not have had a professional production, or be scheduled to have a professional production, prior to August 2016. A professional production means that the artists working on the show were compensated for their time, and that all of the theatrical elements one hopes to see in a production were present.

You may submit one original or adapted work, providing that the rights to any material not in the public domain have been granted in writing, and a copy of the release is sent along with the script.
We develop all genres and styles of drama, including one-acts and solo pieces.  NPC does not develop music theater works, though you may submit such work to the National Music Theater Conference.

While we accept work that has been submitted to NPC in previous years, we recommend that you share new work with us each year. Only complete applications will be accepted, whether in hard copy or electronic form.

Great Plains Theatre Conference
deadline: October 15th

The Great Plains Theatre Conference provides opportunities for participants to interact with and have their work seen by a host of national theatre professionals and scholars.

Theatre WorkShops, Luncheon Panels and daily PlayLab and MainStage Series readings comprise the foundation of the Conference.
Dramaturgy is provided by national dramaturg for each playwright, to providing support before, during and after the Conference
PlayFest is an evening theatre festival for the community and seeks to give voice to the stories that have the power to unite and inspire diverse audiences.

Design Wing brings five emerging designers from across the country to become immersed in the play development from a visual perspective.
Young Dramatists Fellowship Program provides local high school playwrights with access to some of the country’s top plays and playwrights.
GPTC invites and welcomes a number of distinguished and nationally known playwrights, directors and actors each year. These guest artists are in place to nurture and mentor new and emerging playwrights and Conference attendees through various workshops, MainStage and PlayLab feedback sessions and seminars. Each year, the Conference also hosts an honored playwright who is featured throughout the week and recognized for their body of work during PlayFest.

The submission period opens September 1, 2017 at 9 a.m. and will close at 11:59 p.m. on October 15th.

The submission period may close prior to October 15th if the submission limit of 1000 plays is reached.   Check back here for updates on the number of submissions received to-date.

Twenty plays will be selected for PlayLabs.

All playwrights who are selected will receive a $500 stipend, travel/airfare to Omaha, eight nights lodging, daily breakfast/lunch, and select evening meals. Playwrights whose scripts are chosen must agree to attend the entire conference (May 27 – June 2), work with local actors and directors, and lend full support to other playwrights throughout the Conference week.


GPTC will consider both full length and one act scripts that are at least twenty pages in length.

Playwrights may submit a maximum of ONE script. Scripts submitted in previous years and not chosen may be submitted again for consideration.

Plays that have received an Equity production, plays for young audiences, and musicals will not be considered. Equity showcase productions are acceptable, as well as adaptations.

Acceptable formats for submission are .doc or .pdf .  To gauge run time, the standard font size of 12 points is suggested; the left margin should be 1.5 inches and top and bottom margins 1 inch.

What we need:

One file with NO personal identifying information that includes:
Play name
Cast list
Short synopsis (1-2 sentences)
Your play
One file with a title page that includes your name, address, phone   number and email.
A payment of $10 to offset the cost of selection panel readers.
Your play cannot be processed until we receive payment.  Payment can be made via credit card (through Paypal) or by check.  A link to payment information will be provided for you in a popup window after your play is submitted.  You will also receive a confirmation email from us (be sure to check your junk mail folder if you do not receive an email in your inbox).

If you have questions about your submission call 531.622.2618 or mailto:

The Cultural Diaspora: African-American and African Playwrights Creative Residency at the Camargo Foundation
deadline: Oct. 19th

The program welcomes applications from black playwrights who are citizens of the United States or of an African country. Eligible applicants have an interest in the African diaspora as an influence and factor on their craft, work, and thinking. Eligible applicants have had at least three different texts/plays fully produced for public audiences.

Each of the eight participants will receive plane fare, local transport to and from the home airport and Camargo, and both a stipend of $1,000 US and an honorarium of $1,000 US (making a total of $2,000 US per playwright/text creator) to participate. Each artist will be provided a furnished apartment.

The Camargo Foundation, with generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Jerome Foundation, is excited to announce a four-week residency program for mid-career/established African-American and African playwrights. Four participants from the United States and four from the African continent, all of whom are interested in the intersection and interaction, whether historic or contemporary, between the United States and Africa, will be hosted at the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France, from May 28 to June 25, 2018.

Van Lier Fellowship
Deadline: October 25th

The Lark is accepting applications for the third round of its Van Lier New Voices Fellowship program, supported by The New York Community Trust’s Edward and Sally Van Lier Fund.

The Van Lier New Voices Fellowship supports playwrights of color under 30 who demonstrate financial need. During a year-long residency, Fellows will work on multiple artistic projects through an individually-tailored program of Lark play development programs, and form relationships with other theatermakers at various career stages from all parts of the world. The Fellowship includes a cash award of $15,000, plus up to $3,000 in health insurance premium reimbursement, along with access to a wide range of Lark resources, including artistic program participation, office and rehearsal space, and staff support.

In the 2018 cycle, the Lark will award two Fellowships.

Applications will be accepted from August 15 to October 31, 2017.  Selected fellows will be notified in early December 2017.

The 2018 Fellowship period begins January 1, 2018 and ends December 31, 2018.
Fellows will receive:
$15,000 fellowship stipend
$3,000 health insurance stipend
Please note that the fellows will receive a Form 1099 for the 2018 calendar year and be responsible for their own taxes.  Both stipends are taxable.


Fellowship applicants must:
Be legal residents of New York City;
Identify as playwrights of color under the age of 30 at the time of application;
Not be enrolled in a college, conservatory or advanced training program during the fellowship period;
Not be a previous recipient of a Van Lier fellowship at The Lark or any other organization;
Demonstrate financial need; and
Make a case for how the Fellowship and participation in The Lark’s community would promote transformative artistic and professional growth.


Please submit:
A cover sheet, including your name, address, date of birth, phone number, and email address.
A current artistic resume, along with one personal or professional reference (listing the referee’s title or institutional affiliation, along with their phone number and email address). Referrer may be an artistic collaborator, professor, or educator familiar with you and your work;
A one-page Artistic Statement that describes (1) where you feel you are in your creative and professional life; (2) career goals; (3) a proposed strategy for using the Fellowship’s resources towards those goals;
A one-page Description of Financial Need, describing current income, expenses, and any outstanding financial commitments (such as student loans or other debt), including a statement on how the fellowship stipend might be used and why it would be transformative.
A ten (10) page sample of recent work that best represents you as a playwright (Sample may be an excerpt or self-contained 10-minute play). Finalists will be asked to submit a recent full-length play as additional support material.
Finalists will be notified in November.  Selected fellows will be announced in December.

Applications may be emailed in MS Word or PDF to

City Theatre Short Play Festival
Deadline: Sept. 30th

City Theatre is looking for wonderful short plays (ten minutes) for Summer Shorts and other programming. Having produced hundreds of plays, we want scripts that are lively and timely, hilarious and provocative, poignant and surprising. We look for plays that span style and genre. We will consider bilingual scripts. We have no restriction on the age range of the characters. In other words, we are seeking compelling plays that rise above the ordinary.

Contact: Amy Coker, Literary & Programs Manager,

InterAct Theatre New Play Development Award
Deadline: October 1

In tandem with our 30th anniversary, InterAct Theatre Company in Center City Philadelphia is inaugurating a New Play Development Award this year. We are seeking promising plays that can benefit from additional development, and which have the potential to be premiered by InterAct in a future season. The play selected for this award will receive a multi-day developmental workshop at InterAct, along with a $1,000 cash award for the playwright.

The Playwriting Collective - Ball Grant Deadline 
Deadline: September 14 

This $1000 grant is expressly designed for a writer who identifies as
living in or emerging from a lower economic status. Fundamentally we
believe playwriting is an incredible tool of expression and one that isn't
nurtured in America's poorest communities.  We want you to start a
conversation with us in your letter of intent.  Tell us what you identify
as a lower economic status and how this grant will help you.

Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation 
Deadline: October 7 

The Jonathan Larson Grants are intended to honor and recognize emerging
musical theatre artists. Composers, lyricists, and librettists who work in
musical theatre are the focus of the grants. ATW is committed to serving
artists who are creating new, fully producible works for the theatre, and
advancing the art form. The grants do not honor a specific piece or project. Awards range from $2,500-$15,000.

Abrons Arts Center 2017-2018 AIRspace Grant Program: Performing Artists
Deadline: September 4th

Abrons Arts Center’s AIRspace Grant Program offers time-based residencies to five early-career* performing artists working in movement-based, theater, and performance practices. The program provides 150 hours of rehearsal time in any of our four studios, the option to present works-in-progress throughout the duration of the residency period, and other professional development opportunities. Granted studio hours must be used between September 20, 2017 and June 30, 2018.

A program of the historic Henry Street Settlement, Abrons Arts Center is committed to the belief that artistic practice is key to a socio-politically engaged and healthy society. As such, we place value on critical inquiry with ideas and aesthetic traditions. We are seeking applicants who are interested in being part of a supportive community of artists and who see the value of situating their practices within the broader Henry Street Settlement community.

Abrons Arts Center's four studios are available Monday-Friday 10 AM-10 PM, Saturday 9 AM-10 PM, and Sunday 10 AM-6 PM. Studio requests are accommodated to the best of our ability, as we also host engagement classes throughout the year. Please note that there is one wheelchair accessible studio.

Abrons Arts Center does not provide housing, transportation, or visa sponsorship. Applicants living outside New York City will have to make their own accommodation arrangements. All accepted applicants must reside in New York City for the duration of the program. Artists enrolled in a school, college, or university are not eligible to apply. Collaborative groups are invited to apply.

*Abrons Arts Center defines an "early-career artist" as one who exhibits a commitment to their practice and has a record of some professional achievement, but has not yet received significant recognition in the field. This category is not based on the age of the applicant.

Rough Draft Festival: Laguardia Performing Arts Center
Deadline: September 13th

The Rough Draft Festival (RDF) is a two week spring arts festival that celebrates artists/organizations and their work under development from April 6-20, 2018. The focus of RDF is to give the playwright/director an opportunity to view his/her play on its feet before the full production. RDF provides stipends and space for artists to develop their work-in-progress.

The Rough Draft Festival is a celebration of artists/organizations and their work under development. Rough Draft features a wide array of artists whose work is at various levels of development.
 • As an institution we strive to provide an open space to artists to experiment with their evolving work to receive beneficial feedback from others in order to see growth in the project itself.

Artists Receive:
• 20 hours of rehearsal space before tech. These hours must be scheduled from January through March • Total 8 hours of tech
• Small Development Budget upon request
• Up to 3 showings

Artist’s Requirements:
• Provide a proposal describing where you are with the development of piece, and what you would like to achieve by participating in Rough Draft Festival and future goals of the piece (No longer than a page) • Proof of prior reading or workshop of the submitted piece (Include a film clip or pictures and a script attached in your application)
 • Provide a budget proposal

• Please send the materials listed above in a PDF document by September 13th to Scott Davis, Line Producer of LPAC at

2018 Sundance/Sloan Commissioning Grant & Fellowship 
Deadline: September 7th

Established in 2005 to support the development of screenplays with science and/or technology themes, the collaboration between Sundance Institute and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation provides two different opportunities for screenwriters through a Commissioning Grant or a Lab Fellowship. Both provide a cash award to support further development of a screenplay, opportunities to retain science advisors, and receive overall creative and strategic feedback throughout the life of the project.

We are looking for a diversity of stories that not only highlight science (which can include math, technology, medical research, as well as other sciences) as a central component, but also go beyond that thematically to engage us with strong characters and an engaging story. While biopics and historical films are welcome, we also encourage you to think outside the traditional mold of what a science film is, in terms of using the science/technology as a backdrop for stories about individuals, how it influences their lives, relationships, and unique perspectives.  An outside-the-box example is the film MONEYBALL, in which a central character is applying a statistical approach to building his baseball team’s roster.  Science-fiction projects are not eligible for this grant or fellowship. Sci-fi includes stories that are set in the near or distant future or include speculative science (plausible in near future but not yet considered current hard science practice). Examples of sci-fi films are EX MACHINA or GATTACA.

Stories with medical oriented science are eligible but of less interest if it portrays a medical condition (eg. Alzheimers, blindness, etc.) but does not address a specific diagnostic or research process and/or treatment process.


For the Commissioning Grant, screenwriter(s) can be at any stage of their career, with no prior produced work or many produced works. For the Fellowship, screenwriters must have no more than one produced feature screenplay.

Project must incorporate real science and/or technology themes and/or characters. Stories that are sci-fi or futuristic in nature are not eligible.

Project must be a feature length narrative film (no documentaries).

Project must be live action (no animation).

Project must be English language, and screenwriter must reside in the US.

Status of project may range from detailed treatment to full screenplay form. However, only full screenplays will be considered for the Fellowship.

If based on other material, the screenwriter (or submitting party) must have an option or ownership of the source material.

The Commissioning Grant recipient will receive the following:

A cash grant of up to $20,000 to provide support during the writing period

A stipend of up to $5,000 for a science advisor and research

Creative support during the writing process from a Creative Advisor

Creative and strategic support from the Feature Film Program staff

The Fellowship recipient will receive the following:

Attendance as a Fellow at one of the following events at our discretion: Screenwriters Lab, Screenwriting Intensive, or Creative Producing Summit

A stipend of up to $5,000 for a science advisor

A cash grant of up to $10,000 to provide support during the development of the project

Creative and strategic support from the Feature Film Program staff

What you need to complete online by SEPTEMBER 7, 2017 at 6PM PST:

You must sign in or create an account to access the electronic application located at

13 InspiraTO Playwriting Contest
Deadline: November 20th

The play must be a ten-minute play. The theme "all about her" must be an integral part of the play. The story can be a comedy, a drama, a parody, absurd or anything in between (in English only). We also accept musicals. The contest is open to anyone, in any part of the world, without geographic or age restrictions. Scroll to the bottom of the page to submit your play.

Please note: Just because one of the characters or all the characters are female does not necessarily make the theme “all about her”. Ensure that the play highlights a distinct female/feminine voice about the way she engages with the world or how she views the world.

The cover page should have the title of the play, the playwright's name and the list of characters. The pages should be numbered. The format should be easy to read. We accept previously produced plays (but not plays that have produced at InspiraTO before). The playwright must own the rights to the play up to June 17, 2018 (i.e. the script cannot be owned by a publisher).

We are particularly interested in scripts that aren't afraid to make bold choices: quality writing backed by imaginative staging.

What will happen

The plays will be selected by a committee from the Toronto theatre community. If selected, your play will be performed in Toronto, Canada from June 1 - June 16, 2018. Between eighteen to twenty four, ten-minute plays will be selected and performed. 1st Prize: $500 CDN. Should your play be selected for inclusion in the festival, you are giving the non-exclusive right to Theatre InspiraTO to produce and perform the play in the 13th Annual InspiraTO Festival in Toronto (Canada's largest ten-minute play festival), in June 2018. The InspiraTO Festival will find the cast, crew and market your play. Authors retain copyright and full ownership of their plays.

Only those playwrights whose plays have been selected will be notified by January 1, 2018 (more likely by mid-December).

What does a good ten-minute play need?

A ten-minute play is distinct from a sketch, or a skit; it is a compact play, with a beginning, middle and an end. You need a character facing obstacles in pursuit of some specific goal. You need rising action, conflict, and a climactic moment and your play must tell a complete story.

Generally speaking, scripts (including the stage directions, character names and dialogue) that are over 1,900 words are more than ten minutes long on stage. This does not mean that all plays under 1,900 words are under ten minutes, so be wise: use Word Count and read the play out loud while timing the length (including all pauses). You don't want your hard work rejected because it was too long.

PlayPenn Conference
Deadline: September 30th

PlayPenn is now accepting applications for its 2018 new play development Conference.  We are pleased to request your full length, unproduced script for consideration. Currently, we are not considering musicals, plays for young audiences or one-person plays.  If you were a 2017 Conference playwright we ask for a one-year hiatus from applying. Application materials will be accepted between September 1 and September 30, 2017. Your application must be uploaded and complete by September 30, 2017 or it cannot be considered. Please review the guidelines carefully and completely before completing your application.

The 2018 conference will be held in Philadelphia, PA from July 10-29, 2018 at The Drake Theatre. Invited playwrights will have the opportunity to work with a director, dramaturg and Philadelphia-based, professional actors over a 20-day period that allows for 29 hours of rehearsal and staged reading time along with ample time to reflect and write. The work will begin with a three-day roundtable (July 10-12) that will help in laying the collaborative groundwork for the development time ahead. The conference includes two public staged readings that are intended as a part of the process, giving playwrights an opportunity to measure the efficacy of the work accomplished and provide an opportunity to gauge the work ahead.  PlayPenn will provide travel for casting, travel to and from the conference, housing, per diem and a stipend.

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