Student of the Dramatists Guild Institute have an exclusive opportunity to evolve their work through our Play in Progress program. Each faculty profile contains tags, supplied by faculty to identify their focus, to help match you with the best fit for your writing needs. Once you decide upon a consultant(s), select them as your first or second choice in your Plays in Progress application.

Ready to get started? Fill out a PIP application by CLICKING HERE.


I’m drawn to plays about complex, flawed humans struggling to connect with each other and themselves. Characters with big needs and stakes. Plays that explore fundamental questions about the way the world, and the humans in it, work. My main goal as a dramatist-mentor is to recognize the impulse and intention in your play and to help you, the playwright, fulfill your intention.
I’m especially excited to work on plays whose stories can only be told on the stage. Lighting, mixed media, non-linear structure, metaphor, heightened language — whatever you can dream up to tell the story and help illuminate the characters, I’m up for it. I’d be less effective working on plays that are highly plot-driven or message- driven.
After we’ve explored each of our questions about your draft, I’ll aim to have you fired up to start the next one.

Victoria Z. Daly

TAGS: character-driven, conflict, strong character arc, theatricality, dramatic physicality

VICTORIA Z. DALY earned an MFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU/Tisch School of the Arts and a Certificate in theater from L’Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris.

She is the Founder and Director of the 9th Floor, a weekly collaborative of writers and actors in New York City, now in its eleventh season. Plays workshopped at the 9th Floor have gone on to receive hundreds of regional and festival productions, publications, residencies and awards.

Vicki has taught playwriting (specializing in drama bootcamps) in New York City, Tennessee, and Connecticut for such organizations as Stephen Sondheim's Young Playwrights, Inc., the Fly Arts Center, Litchfield Performing Arts, and her own The Write Stuff! programs. A former physical actor, she also taught and performed commedia dell'arte, clown and mask work in Paris, at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and in New York City.

Her plays include Doppelgänger, The Sam Play, Demeter and Polly, Raw, Invisible, Far North, On the Cross Bronx, Circling the Globe, and Rockaway Park. Her work has been presented at the Actors Studio, the Last Frontier Theatre Conference, the ATHE Conference, the Gi60 Festival (NYC and UK,) the Warner International Playwrights Festival, the Alliance for Jewish Theatre, the Berrie Center, Spokane’s KPBX-FM (NPR,) the 1:One UAE Theatre Fest (Dubai,) and the Edinburgh Festival, among other venues. As a television producer, script consultant, and executive, she has worked for entertainment and media organizations including Lifetime Cable Television, Warner Brothers, and the American Broadcasting Companies. Her journalism has been published in national magazines including Glamour, Health, and Portfolio.

Other honors include her selection as Guest Artist at the Kennedy Center Summer Playwriting Intensive. She also earned an A.B. and M.B.A. from Harvard. Member: Dramatists Guild of America; Actors Studio Playwrights and Directors Workshop; Playwrights’ Center of Minneapolis; International Centre for Women Playwrights.

The plays I’m drawn to might take place in a single location and focus on a single problem, but bubbling up underneath that simplicity is a complex statement about what it means to be human in this world. I dig plays that use realism as a foundation but mix in elements from a variety of different forms to tell intricate, epic stories about where we’ve been, where we are and where we’re going. If you’re asking big questions about gender, race, technology, the experiment of democracy, the cyclicality of history and/or where our world is headed, then whatever form you choose, I’ll find my way in and we’ll have a blast figuring out how to get the play in your head and the play on the page in line with one another.

Edith Freni

TAGS: historical/science themed, adaptations, research-heavy, formally ambitious, realism, dark comedy, epic

EDITH FRENI holds both her BFA and MFA from NYU’s Department of Dramatic Writing. Her work has been produced and developed in New York and nationally at theaters including Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Profile Theatre Company in Portland, OR (Buena Vista), EST (Waterborn, Thicker Than Water 2004; My Dog Heart, Marathon 2007; Female Beginner, Marathon 2017), EST West and Labyrinth Theater Company (Bottoms Up!), the Williamstown Theatre Festival (Help Yourself), Actor's Express in Atlanta (The Stroke and Coming at You From the Cockpit); City Theatre in Miami (Flare) and at Nashville Repertory Theatre (This is About You). 

Edith is a three-time nominee for the prestigious PONY Award and a two-time finalist for the Jerome Fellowship. Her play Total Power Exchange was a finalist for the 2017 Blue Ink Playwriting Award given by American Blues Theater in Chicago. It was also nominated for the 2013 L. Arnold Weissberger Award and the 2014 Kilroy's List. In 2014, Edith was nominated for the Humanitas Prize and the Francesca Primus Award for her play Buena Vista.  Her play The Stroke was a Kilroy's List honorable mention in 2015 and that same year, was presented as a part of the Turner New Voices series at Actor’s Express. The Mystic was a finalist for the Blue Ink Playwriting Award in 2018.

Edith was a long-time member of Youngblood and is a member of Partial Comfort Productions and Ensemble Studio Theater. She was a 2015-16 Ingram New Works Lab resident playwright at Nashville Repertory Theater; the recipient of a New Territories Playwriting Residency at Serenbe Playhouse, and a fellowship at the Sewanee Writers' Conference. She has held commissions from Steppenwolf, the McCarter Theatre education program, Actor's Express, Theater Emory, The University of Miami and Georgia College and State University. Edith was the inaugural Emory University Playwriting Fellow from 2014-16. While at Emory, she co-created the commissioning and development program 4:48, a "bake-off" style playwriting challenge inspired by the great Paula Vogel. 

She was also a co-founder and literary manager of The 24Seven Lab, a NY-based theater incubator that developed the early career work of many amazing playwrights, most of whom are now household names, from 2004-2011. She has taught playwriting, playmaking, play analysis, and theater history at the University of Miami, Emory University, The University of the South and is the co-lead teacher for Horizon Theater Company’s annual New South Young Playwrights Fest, as well as a teaching artist with Synchronicity Theater Company’s educational outreach program Playmaking for Girls. She is currently serving as the 2016-18 Tennessee Williams Playwright-in-Residence at The University of the South in Sewanee, TN.

For all else:

My work has spanned mime to musical, contemporary farce to socially relevant, plays for women to plays full of testosterone, multi-media and otherwise.

The connecting key is that they all tell a story. They have real moments – moments that take my breath away, strike a chord deep in my gut, make me laugh out loud, give me pause.

Avant-garde? Not for me. Non realistic? Not so much. Shakespeare? Nah.

Most importantly, I believe, when all is said and done, it’s the playwright’s play. I am only here to help you find your way. Offer ideas. I ask a lot of questions. Prod you to articulate what I don’t understand. Maybe what you don’t even understand.

And if it’s not finished, meaning you haven’t typed ‘End of Play’ or ‘Blackout,’ no problem.

Also, I find myself working on many solo shows – if you should be so inclined. Definitely in my wheelhouse.

Janice Goldberg

TAGS: realism, story driven, short or full length, drama, comedy, anything in between, including socially relevant

JANICE L. GOLDBERG was recently awarded the Kennedy Center Gold Medallion Award for her work with new plays. Based in New York, she has directed over 75 new works, uptown and down, across the country, from university to Off-Broadway. She is the director of the lauded solo piece, I of the Stormstarring Richard Hoehler, which will open Off-Broadway in September at The Gym at Judson.  As Producing Artistic Co-Director of AND Theatre Company, Janice has overseen the production and development of over 100 new plays. For AND she has directed Gary Garrison & Roland Tec’s The Rubber Room, Kristine Niven’s Buried in Time, numerous Eclectic Shorts, Boxers & Briefs, and Go Solos!   She directed the Off-Broadway premiere of Rose Colored Glass, which she co-authored. It is published by Samuel French, Inc., and has had performances across the US and Europe. Rose Colored Glass was named as an NEA Big Read book in CA and MD.

 As an invited guest artist, she selected and directed the 10 Minute Play Slam, the finale at the Last Frontier Theatre Conference in Alaska. 

For over 15 years Janice served as a director and dramaturg in NYU’s Graduate Playwriting Lab, working with and guiding students in all levels of developing their work.   She has shepherded numerous works from inspiration through perspiration to production.  Those include June Ballinger’s (Passage Theatre) Once In…Never Out, which she continually directs up and down the East Coast; NYC Fringe Award Winners That Dorothy Parker, After Anne Frank, Felicitas, all of which were encored and enjoyed future productions.  Other celebrated playwrights/composers worked with: Arlene Hutton, Joe Pintauro, Betty Shamieh, Eric Loo, Mosi Singleton, Dakota Powell, Scott Carter, Tom Diggs, Melanie Marnich,Molly Smith Metzler, Zac Kline, Caridad Svich, Jon Fraser, Mark Dunn, Fred Stroppel, Gregory Fletcher. And Flyovers by Jeffrey Sweet, working with Sandy Shinner of Victory Gardens in Chicago and featuring Richard Kind and Tony Award Winner Michele Pawk.  Janice also directed the premiere of Carol Hall’s (Best Little Whorehouse…) The River Jordan Lamp for Artistic New Directions.  

In addition to Rose Colored Glass, Janice is co-author of 12 plays with Susan Bigelow and directed each in Northern California.  Their play Autumn Run was also selected for CAP21’s Blackjacks Project and performed at Suffolk College.  

Janice’s work ranges in scope from mime to musical, from contemporary farce to courtroom drama, from plays for women to plays full of testosterone.  A recipient of a Pilgrim Project Grant, a Writer/Director Residency at the Dorset Writers’ Colony, VT Janice has also been honored for her work at NYU and the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. She has been a guest artist/director at numerous universities. She teaches the intensive workshop “Writing and Performing the Solo Show”, Nail-the-Job Audition Workshops and runs the AND Solo Writers’ Retreat.  She wrote and directed an industrial for M&M*MARS and is a founding member of the First Look Theatre Company for New York University’s Dramatic Writing Program, a member of New Circle Theatre Company (Circle Rep), SDC and the Dramatist’s Guild.

I am best suited to assist with work focused on the fundamental concerns of – having been born into this world – struggling with the difficulties of being alive. I’m geared toward narratives involved more with exploration of character than development of plot. Work that isn’t easily synopsized, especially that which departs from generally accepted bounds of “realism” (either overtly or subtly), is my forte. If your play wrestles with the complex music of our slippery language, I’m also a good fit.

I am less well suited to assist with work that: conforms to the “well-made-play” ideal, is overtly inspired by headlines or history books, could just as easily work as an essay or a didactic documentary, or would comfortably fit in with the popular TV lineup. This includes: sociopolitical issues, period pieces, historical biopics, and pop culture, unless treated obliquely.

Jakob Holder

TAGS: dark human drama, dark human comedy, magical realism

JAKOB HOLDER was Edward Albee’s personal assistant for fifteen years and is currently the Executive Director of the Edward F. Albee Foundation. He is also an internationally produced playwright and a member of the Dramatists Guild. His plays have had productions and readings throughout the U.S., the U.K., in Helsinki and Rome. He is a two-time winner of the Last Frontier Theatre Conference Playlab Award and a three-time winner of the NAAA New Play Competition.

In 2009, he was selected to be the sole Cherry Lane Theatre Mentor Project playwright for his play Housebreaking. His full-program plays include: Bedtime SolosHousebreaking (Dramatists Play Service, 2012); Repeat PlayGreen Setting SunThe Shoulder;  The Open Circuit and To the Sea in a Sieve. His short plays include: One SlipDarktime in SkiplandErsatzFindings; and Sumatra Mandheling, which was published in Post Road #18.  He has led playwriting workshops for children in Alaska, teenagers in Florida, and adults in Finland. 

A resident of New York City, he was a Dramatists Guild Fellow, a Lark Theatre Fellow, and an Oriveden Opisto Resident Artist.

If your play seeks to unify complex ideas and uncomfortable questions in story form and with heart—realistic or not, linear or not—I’m well-suited. If it involves patrons lying on cots while performers whisper in their ears, I’m probably not. If it’s a comedy that asks nothing more than “is this funny?” I’m probably not. If you’ve written a play about a historic figure, and it’s more about her timeline of accomplishments than what they won or lost for her, I’m probably not. I favor character over plot, psychic journey over grand adventure, and moving moments over melodrama. That said, I’m analytical, good at seeing the big picture, the holes, the connections, and identifying what a play needs to make it cohere.

Donna Hoke

TAGS: sexuality and gender politics, strong female characters, multi-layered themes/narratives, the power and pain of human nature

DONNA HOKE is a resident playwright at Road Less Traveled Productions, and her work has been seen in 43 states and on five continents. Plays include The Couple Next Door (Princess Grace semi-finalist), SAFE (winner of the Todd McNerney, Naatak, and Great Gay Play and Musical Contests), Brilliant Works of Art (2016 Kilroys List), and Elevator Girl (2017 O’Neill finalist); she has also been nominated for both the Primus and the Blackburn Prizes. 

She has received an Individual Artist Award from the New York State Council on the Arts to develop Hearts of Stone, as well as an Artie Award for Outstanding New Play (Seeds). For three consecutive years, she was named Buffalo's Best Writer by Artvoice—the only woman to ever receive the designation. Donna serves on the Dramatists Guild Council and also as Western New York regional representative. 

In addition, she is a New York Times-published crossword puzzle constructor; author of Neko and the Twiggets, a children's book; founder/co-curator of BUA Takes 10: GLBT Short Stories; blogger;  advocate; and moderator of the 11,000+-member Official Playwrights of Facebook. Recent speaking engagements include Citywrights, Kenyon Playwrights Conference, the Dramatists Guild National Conference, Chicago Dramatists, Austin Film Festival, and a live Dramatists Guild webinar. Her commentary has been seen on #2amt, howlround, The Dramatist, the Official Playwrights of Facebook, Workshopping the New Play (Applause, 2017), and at

Chisa Hutchinson

TAGS: people of color, social critique, linear narrative

CHISA HUTCHINSON: Having never even seen a play until high school, Chisa caught up mighty fast by earning a B.A. in Dramatic Arts from Vassar College and an M.F.A. in Playwriting from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She has since been commissioned to write several plays and has even written a few just for kicks, includingDirt Rich (SummerStage), She Like Girls (the Lark Play Development Center, the Ohio Theatre, NJPAC), This is Not the Play (Mad Dog Theater Company, Cleveland Public Theater), Sex on Sunday (the Lark Play Development Center, the BE Company, Trustus Theatre), Tunde's Trumpet (SummerStage, BOOM Arts), The Subject (Atlantic Theater Company, Playwrights’ Foundation, Victory Gardens, Partial Comfort, and Rattlestick Theater) , Mama's Gonna Buy You (WorkShop Theater Company, Inge Center for the Arts),  Somebody's Daughter (Cherry Lane, Second Stage), Alondra Was Here (the Wild Project), and Dead & Breathing (the Lark Play Development Center, Contemporary American Theater Festival, National Black Theatre).

Chisa has been a Lark Fellow, a Dramatists Guild Fellow, a Humanities Fellow, a Resident at the William Inge Center for the Arts, a staff writer for the Blue Man Group and an ensemble member of the New York NeoFuturists. She has been a two-time finalist for the Weissberger Award, a finalist for the Heideman and a finalist for the highly coveted PONY Fellowship.  She actually wins awards sometimes, too, like the GLAAD Award she got for her play, She Like Girls, the John Golden Award for Excellence in Playwriting, a Lilly Award for Most Outstanding Playwright at the Beginning of Her Career, a New York Innovative Theatre Award, the Paul Green Award, a Helen Merrill Award, a Lanford Wilson Award, and most recently a Thom Thomas Award. 

Chisa just finished her residency as a Tow Fellow at Second Stage Theatre where she premiered her play, Somebody's Daughter. She is a proud fourth-year resident at New Dramatists, teaches creative writing at the University of Delaware, and is about to delve into the world of TV on a project for A&E/Lifetime.

I like all sorts of plays and will be happy to work with you if you feel drawn to me. I am strong on structure and character-driven action whether in a realistic or non-realistic, linear or non-linear play. I ask questions to provoke deep exploration.

Andrea Lepcio

TAGS: theatrical, provocative, social/political, diverse, science-based

ANDREA LEPCIO is best known for Looking for the Pony, a finalist for the Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award and for the NEA Outstanding New American Play Award.  It was presented in a "Rolling World Premiere" Off-Broadway at Vital Theatre Company in New York and Synchronicity Performance Group in Atlanta and subsequent productions.  Recent productions include Tunnel Vision at Off the Wall in Pittsburgh, Dinner at Home between Deaths at Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles and The Gold at New York Musical Festival. She is currently working on a EST/Sloan commissioned play about climate change and a new musical Somebody Please Tell Me Who I Am with songwriter Tina DeVaron.  Additional plays and musicals under development include Strait of Gibraltar (Geva Theatre Center and upcoming at Synchronicity Theatre in Atlanta), Central Avenue Breakdown(FwdTheatre) and Lf&Tms (Music Theatre Factory). Andrea is a member of the Dramatists Guild, was a Dramatists Guild Fellow and served as the Dramatists Guild Fellows Program Director for ten years. She teaches playwriting at College of the Atlantic and was a visiting faculty member at Carnegie Mellon University in Graduate Dramatic Writing.  M.F.A. in Dramatic Writing, Carnegie Mellon University.  B.A. Human Ecology, College of the Atlantic. She lives in Maine, which means she travels often.


Kathryn Long

TAGS: stylized language, comedy, comic drama

KATHRYN LONG has directed productions for PlayMakers Rep, the Oregon and Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festivals, American Players, Studio Arena, the Clarence Brown Theatre Company, Louisville's Stage One and the Studio Theatre in Washington, DC.  In New York City, she's staged works for the Samuel French Off-Off-Broadway Festival , Artistic New Directions, Workshop Theater, the Pearl, Jean Cocteau, plus various festivals and events at Queen’s Theatre in the Park, Ma-Yi, and the League of Professional Theatre Women.  

A former NEA/TCG Directing Fellow, Kay's been a member of the Director’s Forum at the Women’s Project, and was Associate Artistic Director for American Players and forStudio Arena Theatre.    She created PlayWorks, a staged reading workshop, at Studio Arena and has worked extensively with emerging writers in the Goldberg Dramatic Writing Program at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. SDC member.

As a director, I get to work with a wide variety of plays. But as a director-dramaturg, I am especially keen on scripts that spring from a particular premise or knowledge base (ie scientific discovery), period or event. Plays that began from a writer’s stumbling across an obscure fact or discovery of a dramatic historical event – if the writer said to her/himself this should be a play, that’s a script I want to get into. The satisfaction for me in working on these kinds of stories is the unbelievably steep challenge of adapting them, and the incredibly rich payoff when one does so successfully. Human beings in extraordinary and pivotal circumstances; it’s an heightened arena for examining human behavior and psychology, and really the essence of drama.

Gwynn MacDonald

TAGS: historical and or science themed, social/political, adding diversity to our national stage and or having a multi-ethnic perspective

GWYNN MACDONALD has directed or produced theater, television, film and radio. Her work in television and radio has received the Gracie Allen Award and Cable Ace and Emmy Nominations. As Artistic Director of the Juilliard alumni-founded Juggernaut Theatre Company, she directed the world premier of Joe Pintauro's Rosen's Son, the English language premier of Criminal by Argentine writer Javier Daulte, produced the award winning hair blood vinyl created with Rinde Eckert, and directed Cathy Caplan's technically complicated Silver Nitrate. 

Outside the company, she developed projects with Gloria Naylor, including the adaptation of her novel Bailey’s Café for Hartford Stage, was the assistant director for the Broadway debut and national tours of Twelve Angry Men produced by Roundabout Theatre Co. and has directed for Theater Breaking Through Barriers, New Czech Drama at New York Theater Workshop and The Public Theater, the New Georges directors-on-classics Roaring Girls series, The Stamford Center for the Arts, Midtown Theatre Festival, New York International Fringe Festival, TRU's New Voices Musical Series and the National Alliance of Musical Theater New Works Festival. Recent venues include Sam French Fest, HB Playwrights Foundation, The New School, NYU, Lark Play Development Center, Clemente Soto Velez, HERE Arts Center, The Wild Project, and Theater for the New City. International work includes directing Vickie Ramirez’s Stand-Off at Hwy #37 in Bogota with Colombian actors where she also gave a talk on contemporary Native American drama at the national Gaitan Teatro, and directing a new play about Nina Simone this past January in Santa Clara, Cuba.  Gwynn also does a lot of work with European playwrights translating and adapting their plays for the American stage, most recently working with Elena Alexieva on her play Madam Mishima.

Playwrights with whom she’s recently or is currently working as a director/dramaturg include:  Bekah Brunstetter (TV’s “This is Us”), Randall David Cook (Best Play at the Southeastern Playwrights Conference, two-time finalist for the O’Neill Playwrights Conference and the Sundance Filmmakers Lab), Cheryl Davis (2017 Francesca Primus Prize finalist, Kleban Award for libretto, 7 Audelco Awards, WGA Award and Daytime Emmy nominations), Aditya Rawal (2017 Innovative Theater Award for Best Original Full-length Script, Outstanding Writing for the Screen, Tisch School of the Arts 2016), Matthew Widman (finalist for Bloomington Playwrights Project’s Reva Shiner Comedy Award and winner of People’s Choice Award Durango Arts Center, Colorado).

Gwynn majored in dramatic literature at Princeton University, working with screenwriter Niven Busch (The Postman Always Rings Twice) among others. After graduation she studied script analysis with Jose Quintero and directing with Vjatcheslav Dolgatchev of the Moscow Art Theater, among others. Fellowships include: Drama League Directors’ Project, DeGrummond Research Fellowship, Columbia University’s Arts Leadership Institute. She is a member of Society of Stage Directors & Choreographers, The Shakespeare Society, and the Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab. She is on the Drama League’s Diversity Committee, Immigrants Theater Project Advisory Board, and the Board of the League of Professional Theatre Women.


Winter Miller

TAGS: dark comedy, non-linear drama, political drama, family comedies & dramas

WINTER MILLER is an award-winning playwright and a founding member of the collective 13Playwrights. Her play In Darfur premiered at The Public Theater for a sold-out run, followed by a standing room only performance at their 1800-seat venue in Central Park, a first for a play by a woman. In Darfur was awarded the “Two-Headed Challenge” from the Guthrie Theater and The Playwrights Center. Select Full-length plays include: Spare Rib, No One is Forgotten, Seed, Look at Us, The Arrival, Amandine, The Penetration Play and Conspicuous.

Select Fellowships and awards include: New York Foundation for the Arts Playwrights Award 2016, Sundance Playwrights Lab, Honorable Mention Relentless Award 2016, Honorable Mention (twice) Kilroys (’15, ’16), AROHO semi-finalist, Playwrights Center Core Member Alum, Civilians R&D Lab ’15-‘16, Cherry Lane Mentor Project ‘11, Hedgebrook, Blue Mountain Center, The Lark, Orchard Project. Commissioned by New Black Fest, Joe’s Pub, CenterStage America, Headlong/Public, NoPassport and Keen. Affiliated artist New Georges, The Lark. She has written for The New York Times, New York Magazine, The Boston Globe and other publications and was once an NBC Page. She holds an MFA from Columbia University, and a BA from Smith College.

Her plays and monologues are published by Samuel French, Playscripts, Smith & Kraus, Random House, Seal Press and No Passport. She is a New Georges and Lark affiliated artist. To get more specific or you like bells and whistles, visit:


Terry Milner

TAGS: naturalism, social/political issues, LGBT

TERRY MILNER is a playwright and screenwriter based in New York City. Terry’s first full-length play, The Jesus Fund, premiered in January 2014 at Burning Coal Theatre. His ten-minute play Nothing is Free was produced and published as part of the Collective:10 Festival in New York. His play Adam Then was a semifinalist for the 2015 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference; a staged reading at The Drama League Studio was directed by John Michael DiResta and sponsored by Theatre Resources Unlimited. His latest play, Jasper, was a semi-finalist for the 2016 Bay Area Playwrights Festival and received a staged reading at Crashbox Theatre in New York, directed by Eddie Prunoske. Terry’s feature screenplay The Fiddle Player was a second-round selection in the 2017 Sundance Screenwriters Lab and his short screenplay Nothing is Free (based on his play) was a finalist in the Phoenix Film Festival’s screenplay competition and a semi-finalist at the Nashville Film Festival. Terry currently has a feature screenplay in development with an independent filmmaker in New York, scheduled for production in 2018.

Terry served as playwright-in-residence at West Virginia Wesleyan College in the fall of 2016, where he led master classes in playwriting. Terry teaches writing for television as an associate instructor with Cheri Magid’s The Write Draft, and has directed at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts in the Graduate Drama Lab. Terry also brings many years’ experience as an actor to his work with dramatists, having worked as both a stage and screen actor for many years. He holds an MFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU/Tisch and is a member of the Dramatists Guild, Actors Equity, and the Screen Actors Guild. 


Matthew Paul Olmos

TAGS: social or political issues, non-realism, drama

MATTHEW PAUL OLMOS is a three-time Sundance Institute Fellowship/Residency recipient (2014 Lab, 2013 UCROSS, 2009 Time Warner Storytelling Fellow), New Dramatists Resident Playwright, Baryshnikov Arts Center Artist in Residence, Princess Grace Awardee in Playwriting, National Latino Playwright Awardee, and La MaMa e.t.c.'s Ellen Stewart Emerging Playwright Awardee as selected by Sam Shepard. 

He spent two years as a Mabou Mines/SUITE Resident Artist being mentored by the late Ruth Maleczech and is a former New York Theatre Workshop's Emerging Artist Fellow, Dramatists Guild Fellow, Primary Stages' Dorothy Strelsin New American Writer, Brooklyn Arts Exchange Resident Artist, INTAR H.P.R.L Playwright, Rising Circle Collective Playwright, terraNOVA Collective's Groundbreakers Playwright; he is also an Ensemble Studio Theater lifetime member. His work has been presented both nationally and internationally, as well taught in university and is published by Samuel French and NoPassport Press. 

He holds an M.F.A. in Playwriting from the New School for Drama, a B.A. in Playwriting from UC Santa Barbara. He is a regular essayist for The Brooklyn Rail, a previous National Endowment for the Arts New Play Development reader, a New York Innovative Awards judge, selection committee member for The Lark’s Playwrights’ Week and Playwrights of New York (PoNY) Fellowship; as well a Kilroys nominator.  

For more information:


Jiehae Park

TAGS: comedy, verticality, mythic scale

JIEHAE PARK’s plays include peerless (Yale Rep premiere, Cherry Lane MP, Marin Theatre Co, Barrington Stage, First Floor, Company One, Moxie), Hannah and the Dread Gazebo (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), Here We Are Here (Sundance Theater-Makers residency, Berkeley Rep’s Ground Floor, Princess Grace Works-in-Progress @ Baryshnikov Arts Center), and contributions to Wondrous Strange (Humana/Actor’s Theatre of Louisville). Her work has been developed through the Soho Rep Writer-Director Lab, the Public’s Emerging Writers Group, p73’s i73, Playwrights Horizons, NYTW, Atlantic, Old Globe, Dramatists Guild Fellowship,  Ojai Conference, BAPF, and the amazing Ma-Yi Writers Lab. Awards: Leah Ryan, Princess Grace, Weissberger, ANPF Women’s Invitational; two years on the Kilroys List. Commissions: Playwrights Horizons, McCarter, Yale Rep, Geffen, OSF, Williamstown, MTC/Sloan. Residencies: MacDowell, Yaddo, Hedgebrook, McCarter/Sallie B. Goodman. She is a NYTW Usual Suspect, LCT New Writer in Residence, former Hodder Fellow, and current member of New Dramatists. Upcoming: performing in Ripe Time/Naomi Iizuka’s adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s Sleep (BAM Next Wave 2017). BA, Amherst; MFA, UCSD.

The plays I am drawn to are character driven with a clear conflict. Dramatic stories told with humor or comedies told with an undercurrent of real drama. I like (and write) family stories, but ones that are connected and engaged with the social and political issues of the broader world. I’m also drawn to plays written specifically for the stage that include elements of theatricality and dialogue that reflects both the authenticity and poetry found in every day speech. As a female writer, I’m especially interested in stories by and about women, but I’m attracted to all stories by diverse voices, told from the heart.

Tammy Ryan

TAGS: character driven, family comedies and drama, social issues, theatricality

TAMMY RYAN is a resident playwright of New Dramatists class of 2025. Her work has been performed across the United States and internationally at such theaters as The Alliance Theater, City Theater, Florida Stage, Marin Theater, People’s Light and Theater Company, Pittsburgh Festival Opera, Portland Stage Company, Premiere Stages, the 29th Street Rep and Writers Theater of New Jersey among others. Internationally her work has been seen in Australia, Canada, Istanbul, Tokyo and, this year, will be performed in Mumbai.

Awards and honors include the Francesca Primus Prize for her play Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods, and the American Alliance of Theater in Education’s Distinguished New Play Award for The Music Lesson. Other plays include Molly’s Hammer (Repertory Theater of St. Louis), Soldier’s Heart (Premiere Stages), Tar Beach (Luna Stage) and Baby’s Blues (Pittsburgh Playhouse). Her plays have been named a finalist for numerous awards including the Heideman Award, Interact Theatre’s 20/20 Commission Award, The Terrence McNally Playwriting Award, the Jane Chambers Playwriting Award, the David Mark Cohen Award, as well as an honorable mention on “the List” by the Kilroy’s.

Tammy has also received fellowships, residencies and grants from the Heinz Endowment, Pittsburgh Foundation, Sprout Fund, Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Sewanee Writers Conference, New Harmony Project and The Bonderman, and her work has been featured at the National New Play Network’s national showcase. Her plays have been nominated for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, the Steinberg Award and a St. Louis Theater Critics Circle Award and are published by Dramatists Play Service, Broadway Play Publishing, Dramatic Publishing Company and Playscripts.

An artistic associate of NewYorkRep and a Dramatists Guild member for many years, Tammy was the first regional rep for Pittsburgh and has long been a teacher and advocate for new work and new playwrights. She’s also taught playwriting for over twenty years at various universities including Carnegie Mellon University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Point Park University and Duquense University. She is a frequent responder and participant in the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festivals and has taught master classes across the country.

“One of the hardest things for a playwright, no matter what their accomplishments, can be to really conquer structure. Inspired by my own production experiences as a dramatist who also is a book-writer for musicals, and a comic book-writer, I love helping imaginative playwrights in that painful act of pulling off the band-aid of creating a game plan for the new theatrical work you’re creating. Using techniques from TV, comic book, and musical theater writing, I like to lead writers through several creative methods of plotting to see what works for you. I believe great dialogue comes from great action, and intention in a writer’s craft. I love helping writers find that balance between keeping their voice and developing their craft to be even stronger. The dramaturgical ‘ ricks’, and insight that I share, is always with one goal in mind: to make sure the playwright I am working with is able to understand these devices so they be their own dramaturg in the future. This will allow the writer to be able to be to listen to feedback, but always be in the driver’s seat as they make the strong choices necessary to create the play they want to create. I would be a great fit for those whose work must be a play, is theatrical and/or uses genre, and whose work speaks to today.”

Crystal Skillman

TAGS: strong dramaturg, timely, theatrical, structure, unique voice, modern, darkly funny, plays and musicals, comic books 

CRYSTAL SKILLMAN’s plays include Geek, Cut, King Kirby, Pulp Vérité, and Rain and Zoe Save the World, just announced as the winning script for the 2018 Earth Matters On Stage (EMOS) New Play Competition. She also is the recipient of an NY Innovative Theater Award, and her work is a three times NY Times Critics Pick. Crystal is also the musical theater book-writer of Mary and Max, just announced for Theatre Calgary’s fall 2018 season, as well as Postcard American Town (composer/lyricist Lynne Shankel), both with director Stafford Arima. Her work in comic books and TV includes writing for “Adventure Time”, and the original upcoming comic book Eat Fighter, written with her husband Fred Van Lente. Together they also penned the play King Kirby. Their pilot Paper Heroes was named one of the top three pilots by in the Break Break contest and one of the top fifty in the Launchpad Pilots competition. Crystal teaches Playwriting at Pace University and at ESPA/Primary Stages. Crystal is represented by UTA.


Judith Stevens-Ly

TAGS: quirky, character-driver, social and political issues

JUDITH STEVENS-LY has worked in the field of new play development with emerging playwrights for many years as a writer, theatre director, and dramaturg. For the Department of Dramatic Writing, NYU Tisch School, MFA program as a consultant director/dramaturg, for over 10 years, as well as Adjunct teacher for the Playwriting Lab. She has had on going working relationships with those graduates who have gone on to be prize-winningplaywrights.

As a director of new plays in Manhattan at many Of and Off-Off Broadway Theatres, including Here Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, 39E30th St Theatre and Looking Glass Theatre, New York, as well as Centenary Theatre Company, NJ.  As Producer of new plays, Creative Artistic Director of Loose Change Productions, NY; Associate Artistic Director of First Look Theatre (Tisch School); Artistic Director of Hysterick Productions, Tokyo.

With the Kennedy Centre American College Theatre Festival, as Advisor to writers of new plays, respondent to productions and event judge, as well as an advisory role in the Dramaturgy Initiative and New Play-writing program.  For the New York Musical Festival, as Consultant Dramaturg for works in progress. She has had the privilege of being Invited Featured Artist for the Last Frontier Playwright’s Conference in Alaska, over several years, and Invited Guest Judge at Mississippi Theatre Association's Annual Festival, and at the Las Casas Scholarship in San Antonio. She has directed two world premiers, one in the US and one in New Zealand, both wonderful plays.  As consultant dramaturg for screenplays, she has worked on new works for Gary Nadeau (Jack) and Frederic Lebow (While You Were Sleeping), among others.

I’m drawn to playwrights who have a deep personal connection to their plays, an urgent need to tell a particular story, and a mission to initiate important conversations with, and among, their audiences. I connect to writers who can answer such questions as: What story won’t be told unless I tell it? Why am I the one who needs to write this play? And: Why do I need to write it now? If you don’t have the answers, I can help you find your emotional connection to your story and why you were drawn to tell it. I believe the degree to which we as writers connect to our stories is proportional to the degree our audience will connect with it as well. So I’m drawn to boldness, bravery, passion, and self-exploration.

My main goal is to help you to achieve your storytelling goals, and to find out what might be getting in your way. Are your characters’ wants, needs, and objectives clear enough? Does every character have a high stake in the story? Is there physical and rising action? Is your dialogue natural or supporting too much exposition? Is the protagonist on a clear and focused journey? Once we determine what playwriting elements need attention, I can offer both suggestions for revisions, and sometimes writing exercises focused on a particular playwriting fundamental to help you strengthen your play.

The feedback, questions, writing exercises and playwriting tools I offer will always apply not just to your current work, but to all your future work as well.

For the DGI I have taught Writing the Autobiographical Play, Crafting Character, and Plays By Women. I also have experience teaching Writing the Issue-Based Play and ten-minute and one-act playwriting.

Sheri Wilner

TAGS: comedy, autobiography, character, deep emotion, personal stories, dramatic action, issue-based, short or full-length, theatricality, writing exercises.

SHERI WILNER’s plays include Kingdom City, Father Joy, Hunger, The End, A Tall Order, Relative Strangers, Little Death of a Salesman, The Unknown Part of the Ocean, and Joan of Arkansas and have been performed and developed at major American regional theatres including the La Jolla Playhouse, the Old Globe, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Eugene O'Neill Playwrights Conference, Guthrie Theater and the Williamstown Theatre Festival. In New York her work has been presented by New Georges, Naked Angels and the Lark.

She has twice been a co-winner of the prestigious Heideman Award granted by the Actors Theatre of Louisville: in 1998 for Labor Day, which premiered at the 1999 Humana Festival, and in 2001 for Bake Off, which premiered at the 2002 Humana Festival. Bake Off was praised by The New York Times as a “barbed, witty, thoughtful, giggle and snort inducing satire on gender roles.” She co-wrote the libretto for a full-length musical version, entitled Cake Off, which premiered at the Signature Theatre in Washington, D.C. (nominated for a Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Original Musical Adaptation); workshopped at the Old Globe in San Diego; and produced by the Bucks County Playhouse, starring Euan Morton and Justin Guarini.

Her plays have been published in over a dozen anthologies, and has published twelve of her one-acts, which have received over four hundred productions across the United States as well as in Australia, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Japan, United Kingdom and India.

Her playwriting awards include a Howard Foundation Fellowship, a Bush Artist Fellowship and two Playwrights’ Center Jerome Fellowships.

Also an established playwriting teacher, Sheri has taught multiple courses for the Dramatists Guild Institute, PlayPenn and Primary Stages ESPA program and is currently the Master Playwright for the Miami-Dade Department of Cultural Affairs Playwrights’ Development Program. Other appointments include: Director and Playwriting Co-Chair of the Dramatists Guild Foundation Fellows Program (2015-18), the Rev. J. Donald Monan S.J. Professor of Theatre Arts at Boston College (2016-17), the Fred Coe Visiting Playwright-in-Residence at Vanderbilt University, and Visiting Assistant Professor in Playwriting at Florida State University’s MFA Dramatic Writing Program in Tallahassee. Additionally, she has extensive experience working one-on-one with playwrights through such organizations as the Dramatists Guild, PlayPenn, the Playwrights Center, as well as on her own.

She attended Cornell University and received her MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University.

I am great at honing stories of redemption. Stories about the hard learned lessons - the identity forged by trial, the victory that comes through sacrifice, the loss only realized once it is too late. Whether it’s an intimate two-hander or an ensemble cast of many more, I can be helpful strengthening the character journey, clarifying relationships, and tracking consistency within the world of the play. Additionally, if your piece is highly theatrical, I can assist you in making sure that those devices are serving your story.

I am not a great fit for pieces that are an exploration of ideas - pieces in the style of Waiting For Godot. Nor can I guide you on how to make your piece funnier. I can tell you whether I found it funny, but I am not a comedy doctor. If you’ve written a genre specific piece (sci-fi, noire, farce, etc.), I am not the person to help you determine how successful your piece is at evoking that genre (i.e. how noire your noire is). I can address the story elements within such pieces, but not the style as it relates to that specific genre.

Cotton Wright

TAGS: Theatrical, earnest, strong female characters, redemtpion, arc

COTTON WRIGHT has had the pleasure over the past 14 years of working on new works, both as an actor and a director. She has collaborated with writers in various stages of their careers (from first-time writers to seasoned professionals), in multiple styles and genres (from plays to musicals, realistic to absurd, period pieces to sci-fi) and seen scripts progress from 10 minute sketches, to full length readings, to workshops, to full productions. As an actor, she has honed the ability to track the continuity of a character's journey. As a director, she focuses on weaving those individual journeys into a cohesive whole. Some of the companies and institutions that she has worked with here in New York include NYU's MFA Creative Writing program, New Dramatists, Women's Project, The Lark, Flux Theatre Ensemble, Amios/Shotz, Artistic New Directions and Gideon Productions. For more of her thoughts about theater, check out her blog at

I am a write what you don’t know writer who draws inspiration from international events and politics. I’m interested in the ordinary people caught in the crossfires and great forces of our time. My plays being in reality then lean into myth and folklore from around the world, combining my affinity for meticulous research with the letting loose of unexpected flights of form and imagination. In terms of style, my plays are a blend straightforward storytelling and fantastical or heightened theatrical realities - a mix of rhythmic, poetic dialogue, dark humor, raw emotion and vast cultural, aural and visual landscapes.

Stefanie Zadravec

TAGS: political, poetic, magical realism, realism, dark humor, raw, honest, bold/resonant, character-driven, storytelling, theatrical

STEFANIE ZADRAVEC is a resident playwright at New Dramatists and  a Core Writer at the Playwright’s Center of Minneapolis.  Her full length plays include: Tiny Houses (WP Theater Commission,  JAWfest 2017, Theatreworks New Works 2017, SPACE at Ryder Farm, Arts Emerson); Colony Collapse (Theatre@Boston Court: Kilroys List); The Electric Baby (Two River Theater, Quantum Theatre, Rorschach Theater); Honey Brown Eyes (Theater J, Working Theatre, SF Playhouse); and currently – The Boat (Working Theater Commission), and Nauru: Requiem for an Island. (NYU Joint Stock Commission) Honors include a 2015 Helen Merrill Emerging Playwright Award, The 2013 Francesca Primus Prize, 2009 Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play, Sustainable Arts Foundation Award, Women in Arts & Media Collaboration Award, as well as fellowships from New York Foundation for the Arts, The Lark, Playwrights Realm, The Dramatists Guild, and Sewanee Writers Conference. She has received support for her work through residencies, grants, and commissions from The Edgerton Foundation, The Ford Foundation, Mellon, the NEA, Arts Emerson, SPACE on Ryder Farm, New Dramatists, The Lark,  New York Stage & Film, JAWFest, Theatreworks, Play Penn, The Lilly Awards, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Kennedy Center, The WP Theatre, Epic Theatre Ensemble, and The Barrow Group.  Stefanie is an alum of the WP Theater Lab, the Lark Playwright's Workshop, and Keen Company's Playwright Lab.  Her plays are published by Dramatists Play Service and featured in Best Women’s Stage Monologues (Smith & Kraus) and The Kilroys: 97 Scenes & Monologues by Women & Trans Writers Volume I (TCG). Stefanie teaches beginning and advanced playwriting at Primary Stages' ESPA, The DG Institute and Play Penn.


I have the utmost respect for the individuality of the creative process. While I will always point to timeless craft principles in responding to your work, I feel it’s equally- if not more important to honor the places where you have broken with tradition and created something astonishing. I’ve had the joy of teaching, coaching or mentoring several hundred musical theatre writers, ranging from seasoned professionals to complete beginners. I’ve worked with writers who are adapting their real-life experiences, writers who are adapting their own previously written plays or novels, writers who are creating original fictional stories, and writers who are adapting stories from history or literature. My strength is responding to big picture questions, the overall structure and song plot of the piece, and how the book and score interact to tell the story. I would love the opportunity to reflect back to you what I see in what you have created, and help you achieve your goals for your musical.

Cheryl Coons

TAGS: musical theatre, plays with music, musical revues, original stories, adaptations, structure and song plot

CHERYL COONS (playwright/lyricistlLibrettist) has co-written more than a dozen musicals that have received professional productions, including River’s End (ASCAP Foundation Harold Arlen Musical Theatre Award, Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards for Original Script and Score, Theatre for the American Musical Award, NYMF and NAMT Festival selection), At Wit’s End (Carbonell Award for Best New Work), Sylvia’s Read Good Advice (Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work), Female Problems (After Dark Award for Best Music) and Phantom of the Country Opera, published by Music Theatre International. She contributed lyrics to Chicago Shakespeare Theatre’s award-winning productions of Merry Wives of Windsor and Measure for Measure. Her work has been produced on the stages of Northlight Theatre, the Marriott Theatre, Drury Lane Theatre, Florida Stage, and Marin Theatre Company, as well as other theatres across the US, and internationally in the UK, Canada, Kuwait, and Russia.

Cheryl’s musicals have been developed and showcased at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center’s National Music Theatre Conference, the National Alliance of Musical Theater’s Festival of New Works, and the New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), Berklee College of Music, and the American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University. Projects she has written have twice been selected for the ASCAP/Disney Workshop in Los Angeles and Chicago, and for further development by ASCAP at the Perry Mansfield New Noises Festival in Steamboat Springs, CO. A revue of her work was produced at the Royal George Theatre and was honored as one of Chicago’s 10 Best Cabaret Shows of the year by Cabaret Scenes magazine and Cabaret Online. Her original novelty songs have been featured on Good Morning, America, The Today Show, and NPR’s Morning Edition. Cheryl has appeared at Carnegie Hall, performing her original material in an evening hosted by Michael Feinstein.

Cheryl has been a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists since 2008, where she designed and teaches a curriculum of five classes for musical theatre writers. Since 2009 she has taught 38 sections of these classes, serving more than 275 students. She has also designed and taught musical theatre writing and musical theatre appreciation courses for Columbia College and Porchlight Music Theatre. She has worked since 2015 as a mentor and instructor for the Writing the Musical class at Northwestern University.

Cheryl served as an animateur (liaison/dramaturg/curator) for Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Chicago Voices Project, developing two original musicals with a group of Chicagoans who had experienced homelessness, and a collective of youth artist/activists. She is a Program Manager for Storycatchers Theatre, assisting the court-involved youth at the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center to write original musicals based on their real life stories.

Cheryl is the Chicago Regional Rep for the Dramatists Guild.


John Dietrich

JOHN DIETRICH has had a career immersed in musical theatre storytelling working as a professional Director, Choreographer, Writer and Educator. This has included a 17-year relationship with Radio City Entertainment, where he was the Director/ Choreographer for the world-famous Rockettes, for Rockette Special Events, as well as for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Other work includes well over a hundred shows in a vast range of entertainment genres: from Television to Off-Broadway & Regional theatre, from Industrial shows to Ice shows. He has created and written for Walt Disney Entertainment, as well as for Dolly Parton & Dollywood Entertainment. He was the creative director for Niles Creative Group, a film production company specializing in large scale theatrically based film and video productions worldwide.  He wrote the book & lyrics for the musical THINGS AS THEY ARE, based on the life of documentary photographer Dorothea Lange. It was a Next Link selection for the New York Musical Theatre Festival and received the “Best of Fest” Award for most popular show. It was also twice nominated for the prestigious Fred Ebb Award in 2009 and 2011. ONLY ANNE, an adaptation of Jane Austen’s Persuasion, written with composer Will Buck, received development at the Rhinebeck Writer’s Retreat and was produced at the 2016 Goodspeed Festival of New Musicals.

John teaches a two-part master class for the NYU Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program titled Dance as a Storytelling Device in the Writer’s Toolbox with dance arranger David Chase, and was on the Adjunct Faculty at Marymount College of Manhattan teaching a course in Musical Theatre Performance. He received his MFA from New York University, Tisch School of the Arts, in Musical Theatre Writing, and his MA from New York University Gallatin School in Musical Theatre Structure & Directing Theory. He also holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Wisconsin. He currently continues to freelance as a Director/Choreographer & Writer while being an academic advisor in NYU Tisch Drama for their musical theatre students as well as being the department’s Manager of Faculty Services.

I’m a big believer in the notion that musical theater is a form and not an aesthetic. I don’t think a musical should sound any one way. Music is language that has the potential to convey equivalent amounts of meaning as text, and just as the lyrics and libretto of a musical are shaped by its world and characters, as well as the voice of its creators, so too is the music. I ask the same questions of a musical when I’m working as its creator as I do when I’m empowering another creator in the capacity of a mentor: What’s specific about it? What’s clear and what’s not clear? What’s making it need to be a musical? Being able to really see the thing you’re working on is perhaps the most critical piece to knowing where to take it next. Think of me as your spectacles.

Anna K. Jacobs

TAGS: musical storytelling, heightened worlds, hybrid forms, feminist narratives, song structure

ANNA K. JACOBS is a Brooklyn-based composer/lyricist and sometimes-librettist. Her musicals include Pop! (Yale Rep, Pittsburgh City Theatre, Studio Theatre), Harmony, Kansas (Diversionary Theatre), TEETH (O’Neill Musical Theater Conference), Anytown (George Street Playhouse), Echo (The Gallery Players), Stella and the Moon Man (Sydney Theatre Company/Theatre of Image), and the short musicals Cage Match and Magic 8 Ball (Prospect Theatre Company). She also wrote music and lyrics for Kaya: Taste of Paradise, a movie musical commissioned by the New York Film Academy and featuring Okieriete Onaodowan.. Currently, she and playwright Anna Ziegler are collaborating on a new musical for Barbara Whitman Productions and Grove Entertainment that’s about catfishing. Anna was recognized for her work as a composer/lyricist with the prestigious Billie Burke Ziegfeld Award. She holds an M.F.A. in Musical Theatre Writing from NYU-Tisch, is a former Sundance Fellow and Dramatists Guild Fellow, and has been an Artist in Residence at Ars Nova, New Dramatists, Musical Theatre Factory, Goodspeed, and Barrington Stage Company.

Anna is also a passionate educator. She was recently appointed Director of the New York Youth Symphony’s new Musical Theater Composition program, and is on faculty at the New School and C.U.N.Y. She founded and facilitates the NYMF Songwriting Workshop, now in its fifth year, and is a Teaching Artist at the Metropolitan Opera Guild and Lincoln Center Theater. Twitter: @annakjacobs  

I want to help you to write the show YOU want to write. Your artistry, passion, and vision have already gotten your musical to where it is now. In my experience, most remaining issues are merely organizational. While honoring YOUR intentions for your piece, let’s see how together we might implement techniques to maximize clarity, pace, focus, and theatricality, allowing your vision to come through with greater economy and specificity.

Andy Monroe

TAGS: structure, story, clarity, theatricality, integration of themes and narrative, economy

ANDY MONROE is a New York based librettist, lyricist, and composer. His original musical, Drive, won a BMI Foundation Jerry Bock Award for Outstanding Achievement in Musical Theatre and was a NAMT finalist. He composed the score for a musical adaptation of Dan Savage's comic memoir, The Kid (with lyrics by Jack Lechner and a book by Michael Zam), which premiered off-Broadway at The New Group under the direction of Scott Elliott where it won the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical. It also won a BMI Foundation Jerry Bock Award for Excellence in Musical Theatre and was nominated for multiple Lucille Lortel and Drama Desk awards. In addition, he wrote the music and lyrics for The Tragic and Horrible Life of the Singing Nun (book and additional lyrics by Blair Fell), which was selected to be a part of the New York Musical Theater Festival (NYMF). His musical short, The Life and Times of Joe Jefferson Benjamin Blow, has been produced regionally as well as in New York City, and he also wrote the short musicals Sally Peaches, La Rhonda, and Elevator Music as part of his participation in 4@15 at The York Theatre, where he also participated in their NEO4 Concert. He co-wrote the song, My Science Project (lyrics by Jack Lechner), which was sung by Rosie O'Donnell on her HBO special, A Family is a Family is a Family. His work has been performed three times in the annual Bound For Broadway Concert at the Kauffman Center, NYC. He is the recipient of a BMI Foundation Jerry Harrington Musical Theater Award for Outstanding Creative Achievement and has also received a Jonathan Larson Grant from the American Theatre Wing. He was a Dramatist Guild Fellow and has also participated in the Johnny Mercer Writers Colony at Goodspeed where he was invited to continue development of his original musical, The Clearing. He is a member of both the BMI Lehman Engel Advanced Composer-Lyricist Workshop (where he is a frequent guest moderator) as well the BMI Librettists Workshop.

The lyricist is the lynch pin of the musical theatre collaborative model, having to mesh seamlessly with musical and textual language. As such, I have a keen and comprehensive knowledge about how all three moving parts must function to create a cohesive whole. I tend to approach critique (and my own process) from a formalist point of view. What are the narrative conventions and how is the writer honoring them, and in some cases, purposefully subverting them? I tend to evaluate work at a molecular level first (zooming in on diction and rhyme, for example) and I gradually move out to consider character development, storytelling practices, and overall vision.

Amanda Yesnowitz

TAGS: musicals, lyric mechanics, language maven, modern comedy

AMANDA YESNOWITZ received the 2018 Kleban Prize for the most promising lyricist. She has also earned the Jonathan Larson Award (first individual lyricist), a Dramatists Guild fellowship, 8 MAC Award nominations, the Dottie Burman Award and the Jamie deRoy and Friends/ASCAP Award, all for excellence and vision in lyric writing.

Current projects include The Peculiar History of Dr. James Barry (Davenport Theatrical) which will be developed at the Rhinebeck Writers Retreat in the summer of 2018; an adaptation of the novel/film Somewhere in Time (Davenport Theatrical, music by Doug Katsaros), which had its world premiere production at Portland Center Stage in 2013 (7 PAMTA nominations; NAMT finalist). Amanda (along with David Zippel and Sheldon Harnick) is also contributing lyrics to In the Name of Love, a revue with music by Don Oliver.

Recently Amanda presented her work at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. She also participated in the Johnny Mercer Artist Colony at Goodspeed where she was invited to continue developing her original musical By The Numbers (ASCAP and TRU showcases, Buck Hill Skytop Festival finalist). Amanda’s words have been performed by Broadway luminaries such as Susan Egan and Melissa Errico as well as musical icons like Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops on New Year’s Eve at Symphony Hall in Massachusetts. A revue based on her song “Those 7 Little Words” enjoyed an extended run at Cleveland’s Playhouse in the Square and a revue based on her song “Understudy Blues” garnered raves at the Galloway in Cape Town, South Africa. She has collaborated with many other illustrious composers including Larry O’Keefe, Skip Kennon, Brad Ross, Deborah Abramson, Barbara Anselmi, Matthew Sklar, Sam Willmott, and Jason Robert Brown. Her lyrics have been part of the NAMT Showcase, New York Theatre Workshop’s benefit honoring James Lapine, Broadway at Birdland, Lea Michele’s cabaret debut in NYC and LA; quoted in Newsday, The Daily News, The Sydney Morning Herald, and Time magazine; and published by The New York Times and The Dramatist magazine.

Other complete works include The Caucasian Chalk Circle (Hangar Theatre world premiere), The History of War (O’Neill Conference finalist; 2010 NYMF invited selection), Four-Letter Words (York Theatre), Triptych (Provincetown Play Festival selection; ATB Flores Series), and Building a Wing (Best Musical at 2007 Short, Sweet & Song Festival in Sydney). Recordings: ”Gotta Start Small” on Stephanie J. Block’s This Place I Know (PS Classics; Live from Lincoln Center/PBS May 2018; currently streaming on Broadway HD), “Too Close to the Sun” on Steve Marzullo’s Kiss Me While We Have the Chance and the title track of Steve Marzullo’s Show Some Beauty (both on Yellow Sound Lab).

Amanda holds degrees from Tufts University, The Boston Conservatory, NYU (where she teaches full-time as a Senior Lecturer in Art and Public Policy), and in addition to being a nationally ranked crossword puzzle solver, her debut as a crossword constructor was published in the magazine section of The New York Times on August 26, 2012… no ordinary Sunday.