Festival of New American Theatre


When is the Festival of New American Theatre 2024?


The 2024 Festival of New American Theatre rehearsals and performances span January 1 – January 21, 2024. Events perform on the weekends (Friday-Sunday) beginning January 5. Specific rehearsal and performance scheduling will be given after selections are made.

When is the submission window?

July 3, 2023 – July 21, 2023.

When will artists be selected?

Artists for the 2024 Festival will be selected by October 2023.

Who is eligible to submit?

All artists are encouraged to submit if they are over the age of 18 and are eligible to work in the United States.

How many submissions do you accept?

Due to time constraints, we are capping submissions for each category at 300 applications. Please submit early to ensure your work can be considered.

If I submit this year, do I need to submit again?

Finalists from the 2023 Festival are still in consideration for the 2024 Festival and any work submitted this year will be considered for the 2024 and 2025 Festivals.

Can you tell me about the submission process?

We have a diverse panel of readers who are artists, playwrights, dramaturges, directors, and music directors who review our submissions. For the first round, the panel will read the first 10 pages of the script or book for each play or musical. If the piece receives two yes votes it will move forward to the next round. In round two, the first act or first half of the script will be read. With two yes votes a piece will move on to round three where the full script and score will be reviewed. The finalists will then be reviewed by the Festival Director and Artistic Director and a piece will be selected based on its artistic potential and how it fits in with the other festival programming for that year.

Is the only way to submit through the website or the links?

Yes, you are only able to submit via the submission links. (See top of this page) This streamlines the submission process and makes it equitable for all candidates. Remember to attach a blind copy of your script/music. If you encounter any difficulties, please feel free to email us at newworks@phoenixtheatre.com with your contact information and we can guide you through the process or answer any questions.

What is a blind copy?

A blind copy of script/score/music has the name of the playwright/composer/lyricist blacked out so that the committee reading the plays/musicals are not swayed because of bias.

My play/musical has not had a professional production, but my church did it. Can I submit?

Yes, you are welcome to submit your play/musical as long as it has not received two professional readings/workshops.

What qualifies as a professional reading?

If the artists involved were compensated for their work, that would constitute a professional production.

It states that to be eligible to submit a play or musical I must have had at least one previous work that has been performed (fully or as a reading) in another festival or at a professional theatre. What does this mean?

We are actively seeking playwrights/composers/book writers who have experience workshopping new works in either a festival capacity or as a premiere at a professional theatre. The piece being submitted cannot have had two readings/workshops or had a world premiere, but at least one other piece in the artist’s cannon should have reached this status to show proof of this experience.

Can I submit a work I previously submitted?

Yes. Please note that if you submitted to the 2023 Festival and you were notified as a finalist, your work is already in consideration. You are welcome to submit previously submitted work, but we encourage that you only resubmit if significant revisions have occurred.

I want to submit for the Composer/Lyricist Cabaret and I don’t have any demos, can I submit?

We only take submissions that come with demo recordings. Submissions that come without them will be automatically disqualified. Your recordings do not have to be fully produced and a piano version recorded on your smartphone/tablet/computer will suffice.

Can I submit material for the Choreography Lab only?

No. You will not be able to submit music to be considered only for the Choreography Lab. The material for the Choreography Lab will be selected from one of the musicals or from one of the Composer/Lyricists to further expand the work of these artists with movement.

Does the text of my script or score need to be formatted a certain way?

No. We recognize that different software formats differently – however, your script does need to be a blind PDF to be considered.

How should the character breakdown be formatted?

All plays and musicals must have a cast of 6 actors or less for the 2024 Festival. Please be sure to clearly indicate character doubling on your character breakdown page. Any piece that has a cast larger than 6 will not be considered.

Can I get feedback on why my submission was not chosen?

Unfortunately, no. Due to the volume of submissions we are unable to provide feedback.

Will you contact me if my submission was not chosen?

Every effort will be made to contact you if your play/musical/songs has not made it to the next round. Oftentimes, we find that these emails go to junk mail, so be sure that you check there as well.

I would like to submit my play/musical for the festival, but I live outside of the United States. Do you accept submissions from other countries?

We are currently only accepting submissions from playwrights, composers and lyricists from the United States.

I would like to submit my play/musical for your festival, but it has had 4 workshops. Is it eligible?

Any play/musical that has had more than two workshops (readings with production value and/or memorized) is not eligible. If it’s had two readings (or less) with script in hand, it’s eligible.

I want to submit my jukebox musical, but it’s based on another artist’s music and I don’t currently have the rights. Can I submit?

If a musical does not have original music, you must provide proof of rights to any music that you plan on using at the time of submission.

What if I have a play that has music in it? Which category should I submit under?

For musicals we aim to assist the development of all aspects of the show – book, music, and lyrics. If music is integral and will also be developed, we would consider this a musical. If not, this should be submitted as a play and note the presence of music. You must also have proof of the rights to any songs performed in the play as well to submit.

I would like to submit a full length musical AND a full length play AND enter music to be considered for the Composer/Lyricist Cabaret. Will you accept all of the submissions?

Yes, you are welcome to submit one entry into each of the categories. You will need to process each entry separately when you submit. **REMINDER: A $10 submission fee is required for each full length submission unless you are a member of DGA or WGA. The $10 submission fee is NOT required for the Composer/Lyricist Cabaret.

I am not a member of DGA or WGA but I am unable to afford the submission fee, can I still be considered?

We offer a limited number of fee waivers that are offered on a first come, first serve basis. Please complete the Fee Waiver Request From before completing your application and you will be notified if you are granted a fee waiver.