Athena Writes 2019

Playwriting Fellowship


Athena Theatre seeks submissions for their annual Playwriting Fellowship, Athena Writes. In addition to producing NYC premieres in venues including 59E59 Theaters and Theatre Row, Athena Theatre actively supports emerging playwrights with this fellowship. Athena Writes is an emerging playwrights’ group assembled for a one-year exploration of an open-ended theme. Next year, we will be exploring “A Deafening Silence”. Athena Theatre is committed to supporting new work that pushes at the boundaries of live theatre. We especially encourage playwrights with an eye for diverse characters, strong points of view, and action-focused dialogue to apply.

As a part of Athena Writes, playwrights will meet twice a month on Wednesdays (or a day that works best for the group), beginning in mid-January 2019, for three hour sessions, to discuss the year’s theme, share new work and talk playwriting and the business of theatre. During the course of the year, each playwright will complete a short 10-minute play that will be produced at Athena’s yearly New Play Festival, currently scheduled for May 2019, at a NYC theatre. Before the end of the fellowship year, each playwright will also complete a full-length piece reflecting the year’s theme. The playwright group will be facilitated by Athena Theatre Company’s 2019 resident dramaturge, Kate Thomas.

By applying to this fellowship, you acknowledge that you are able to make this time commitment to attend these sessions twice a month for the duration of 2019. Your attendance is instrumental for the development of your own work as well as support for your fellow playwrights. Other than cases of illness, an emergency or theatre related conflict, each playwright is permitted four absences per year, which must be approved by the Artistic Director in advance.

All playwrights will offer a ten-minute play for the play festival. Athena Theatre will provide the theater space and PR outreach; playwrights will be responsible for any specialty costumes, props or scenic items. The compilation of all ten-minute plays created in residence will be submitted for publication consideration.

At the end of the year, 10-minute excerpts from each full-length play will be presented as a staged reading at a NYC venue TBA.

The playwrights’ full-length plays will also be considered for full production by Athena Theatre in its next season. In addition, the next year’s playwright-in-residence will be chosen from this group of playwrights.

Those selected for the playwriting fellowship (limited to eight participating playwrights) will be asked for an admission fee of $300 to join Athena Writes 2019. This contribution goes directly to theatre rental, actor and crew stipends for the Evening of Ten-Minute Plays and the Year-End Staged Reading.

Playwright agrees to credit Athena Theatre if/when the plays they write in residence are published.

Playwright agrees to credit in the program Athena Theatre if/when the plays they write in residence are produced.


(a) The Author recognizes that by producing and presenting the Non-Profit Production and/or reading, Producer makes a substantial contribution to the value of the Play. Accordingly, with respect to any future production of the Play(s) produced under any Agreement entered into not later than five (5) years following the end of Athena Writes 2019, including without limitation Broadway, Off-Broadway, first class, second class or Regional Theater productions within the United States (each hereinafter referred to as a “Subsequent Production”), Author shall arrange with the producer of such Subsequent Production for Athena Theatre Company to receive (i) a royalty, based on Gross Weekly Box Office Receipts (“GWBOR”, as that term is defined in Author’s contract for any Subsequent Productions), of one percent (1%) of the GWBOR payable commencing with the first paid public performance of any such Subsequent Production in which the Author receives a percentage royalty based on GWBOR, and (ii) five percent (5%) of one hundred percent (100%) of the net profits of the entity formed to produce such Subsequent Production. Athena Theatre Company shall be entitled to receive such royalty at the same time as Author receives a royalty, to be accompanied by appropriate box office statements (or any other statements delivered to Author). Provided all other percentage royalty participants, including the Author, agree to participate in a royalty pool or agree to waive, reduce, defer or otherwise adjust said royalty, then Athena Theatre Company shall likewise agree.

(b) If Athena Theatre Company is not receiving net profits in accordance with the preceding paragraph then, with the respect to the sale of any Subsidiary Rights, including but not limited to television, film, video, cable, stock productions, and any other Subsidiary Rights in and to the Play, Athena Theatre Company shall be entitled to receive five percent (5%) of the gross proceeds of any monies (less only agent’s commissions) received by the Author from the sale or disposition of such Subsidiary Rights.

Rights as set forth herein shall be limited to contracts entered into within 5 years from the last session of Athena Writes 2019.

We will have guest dramaturges throughout the year to give feedback on the new pieces. We will also keep playwrights apprised of all play submission opportunities. The meeting space is at the Dramatists Guild Foundation, on W. 40th St, NYC. The three-hour meetings will comprise of discussions about individual playwrights’ projects, as well as readings of new work, where playwrights will cast (from the other writers) in order to hear their work read aloud. Athena Theatre believes that a play cannot be fully understood until the words hit the ears of an audience. This process will allow playwrights to deepen their understanding of their own work, as well as glean ideas and approaches from their fellow playwrights.

Playwrights will be asked to concentrate on both their ten-minute piece, as well as their full-length piece throughout the year.

To be considered for Athena Writes 2019 Playwright Fellowship please submit the following by December 21st, 2018, to Founding Artistic Director, Veronique Ory, at:

-Cover Letter detailing your interest

-Full-length play, which highlights your style of writing


More information may be found at

January 14, 2019 – December 13, 2019