Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Women’s Project Theater Seeks Exceptional Women Theater Artists for Two Year Lab, Application Deadline November 4, 2013

women's projectNEW YORK – Women’s Project Theater, the 36-year-old non-profit company dedicated to producing plays written and directed by women, is seeking a few good women for its 2014-2016 Lab of playwrights, directors and producers, underwritten with a generous grant from the Time Warner Foundation. The application deadline is November 4.

Selected through a highly competitive, national application and interview process, the Lab provides up to fifteen artists with a vital professional network, entrepreneurial and leadership training, free rehearsal space and, most significantly, tangible opportunities for the development and production of bold new work for the stage. Lab artists are supported by the Time Warner Foundation Fellowship, which includes a stipend for participating in Lab activities.

Details on applying to Women’s Project Theater’s Lab are at All application materials are reviewed by theater professionals. Finalists will be notified in early May and asked to interview in June 2014. The 2014-2016 Labs will begin in September 2014.

The Lab has two main goals: to cultivate the work of women theater artists and to give women artists the tools they need to succeed in the business. In addition to developing their own unique work, Lab artists collaboratively create a culminating residency production.

“The Lab is the heart of Women’s Project Theater, and the Lab artists are fierce,” said Julie Crosby, Producing Artistic Director of Women’s Project Theater. “That’s why 75% of our main stage productions over the past eight seasons have been created by Lab playwrights, directors, and producers.”

Women’s Project Theater Lab alumnae include the playwrights Bekah Brunstetter, Laura Eason, Katori Hall, Quiara Alegria Hudes, and Dominique Morisseau, the directors Tea Alagic, Shelley Butler, Lear deBessonet, Pam MacKinnon, Daniella Topol, and Gaye Taylor Upchurch and the producers Jennifer Conley Darling, Maria Goyanes, Manda Martin, and Stephanie Ybarra. Details on current Lab artists are at

Time Warner Foundation provides leadership support of Lab artists and new play development at Women’s Project Theater.

The opportunities in the Women’s Project Theater Lab do not stop after the two-year program. Having forged strong working relationships, the Lab artists continue to work together long after their official residency ends. And Women’s Project Theater continues to advocate ferociously for its Lab alumnae by brokering agents, providing references, and submitting their work – often first developed in the Lab – to theaters around the country. Most significantly, Women’s Project Theater puts its money where its mouth is by hiring Lab artists for main stage productions.

This season, Women’s Project Theater presenting Row After Row, a dark comedy about a group of Civil War re-enactors, January 15 through February 16. The Architecture of Becoming, February 25 through March 23, is a collaborative series of short plays inspired by New York City Center’s improbable history (the building, not the city). Catherine Trieschmann’s The Most Deserving, a tart, satirical comedy about a small Kansas arts council tasked with awarding $20,000 to a deserving local artist, takes the stage March 30 through May 4. This is Ms. Trieschmann’s third play for Women’s Project Theater.

Women’s Project Theater was founded in 1978 by Julia Miles to address the significant under-representation of women in the American theater, and has since built a tremendous legacy. Although even today women playwrights and directors severely lack parity in pay and opportunity, the extraordinary women artists who have broken through the glass ceiling have all crossed the threshold at Women’s Project Theater, including Eve Ensler, Lynn Nottage, Maria Irene Fornes, Suzan-Lori Parks, Diane Paulus, Sarah Ruhl, Paula Vogel, and Anna Deavere Smith, among the many. Throughout its 36-year history, Women’s Project Theater has produced and/or developed over 600 plays and published 11 anthologies of plays.

Recently acclaimed plays produced by Women’s Project Theater include last season’s Bethany, Jackie and Collapse and from seasons past How the World Began and the Obie-winning Milk Like Sugar, Freshwater, Aliens with Extraordinary Skills, crooked, Sand, Or, Smudge, Lascivious Something and Apple Cove.

Leadership support of Women’s Project Theater is generously provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation New York Theatre Program, Bloomberg Philanthropies, New York Community Trust, Shubert Foundation, Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, and Time Warner Foundation. Women’s Project Theater is also supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and by the National Endowment for the Arts, Art Works.

Other articles by Lia Chang:
Photos: Denise Burse, Michael Genet, Doug Eskew, Tracie Thoms, Sakina Ansari-Wilson and More Celebrate Marcus Gardley’s dance of the holy ghosts Opening Night at Center Stage
Signature Theatre’s World Premiere of David Henry Hwang’s Kung Fu Stars SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE’s Cole Horibe as Bruce Lee
National Black Theatre Festival Photos: Backstage with André De Shields, Marie Thomas, Erin Cherry, Sean Phillips and Morocco Omari in Knock Me A Kiss
Photos: André De Shields, Mary Zimmerman, Akash Chopra, Richard M. Sherman, Kevin Carolan, Larry Yando, Nehal Joshi and More Celebrate The Jungle Book Opening Night at Huntington Theatre in Boston
Oct. 5-Nov. 17: LTC3/Lincoln Center Theater’s World Premiere of JC Lee’s LUCE Features Olivia Oguma, Marin Hinkle, Neal Huff, Okieriete Onaodowan and Sharon Washington
Photos: Backstage Q & A with Thom Sesma and the cast of Signature’s Miss Saigon
Photos: Backstage with Michi Barall and the cast of Regina Taylor’s stop.reset. at Signature Theatre
Photos: Opening Night of Will Power’s Fetch Clay, Make Man with John Earl Jelks, Richard Masur, Nikki M. James, K. Todd Freeman, Ray Fisher Review: Power Play Powerful & Suspenseful
Photos: All-Access Pass to August Wilson’s Two Trains Running with John Earl Jelks, Harvy Blanks, Chuck Cooper, Anthony Chisholm, Owiso Odera, Roslyn Ruff and James A. Williams
Signature Theatre’s 2013-14 Season Features New Works by Albee, Hwang, Enos, Taylor, Wilson, Clarke and Jacobs-Jenkins
Photos: The 58th Annual Drama Desk Awards and After Party
Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang. Photo by Brianne Michelle Photography

Lia Chang. Photo by Brianne Michelle Photography

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist.
All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2013 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at

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