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New Play Development

New work is the future of theatre, and this is where you’ll find in-depth content about best practices for its development, as well as pieces about specific work. Consider starting with the essay “Rules of Engagement for New Play Development” and Notes to the Note-Givers; or, Embracing the Paradox.” For musings on the power of new work, watch the video of Todd London’s keynote for the 5th Annual ORIGINKC: NEW WORKS FESTIVAL or read the transcript.

The Latest

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
A Playwriting Masterclass
Monday 27 June 2022
United States
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
A Playwriting Masterclass
Monday 20 June 2022
United States
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
A Playwriting Masterclass
Monday 13 June 2022
United States
Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 27 June 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 27 June 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 20 June 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 20 June 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 13 June 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 13 June 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 6 June 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 6 June 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 30 May 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 30 May 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 23 May 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 23 May 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 16 May 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 16 May 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 9 May 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presents Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work—a playwriting masterclass—livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 9 May 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Six people standing together for a photo.
"The Molecules Changed in the Room": Creating a Play from Real Asian Women’s Desires, Dreams, and Heartaches
Essay

"The Molecules Changed in the Room": Creating a Play from Real Asian Women’s Desires, Dreams, and Heartaches

3 May 2022

Danielle Iwata sits down with Amy Zhang to discuss the creation and significance of her show Ascend!, which featured a cast and crew entirely made up of Asian women.

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 2 May 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presented Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work — a playwrighting masterclass — livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 2 May 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

Three actors performing outdoors.
On Hauling Water: Outdoor Theatre as Re-Enchantment amidst Climate Crisis
Essay

On Hauling Water: Outdoor Theatre as Re-Enchantment amidst Climate Crisis

2 May 2022

Theatre artist Elle Thoni shares their experience working on the outdoor theatre production of a futuristic musical, Queen B, and challenges institutional ideas on how and where theatre can take place.

event poster for the pacific playwrights festival.
Pacific Playwrights Panel
Video

Pacific Playwrights Panel

Conversations with the playwrights of the Pacific Playwrights Festival

Sunday 10 April 2022
United States

South Coast Rep presented a Playwrights Panel livestreaming on the commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network on Sunday 10 April 2022 at 9 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 11 a.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 12 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4).

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work event poster.
Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work
Video

Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work

A Playwriting Masterclass

Monday 28 March 2022
United States

The Public Theater in New York City presented Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work — a playwrighting masterclass — livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Monday 21 March 2022 at 12 p.m. HST (Honolulu, UTC -10) / 1 p.m. AKST (Juneau, UTC -9) / 2 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 4 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 5 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 22:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 23:00 CET (Berlin, UTC +1).

From the Ground Up Podcast image featuring Mara Isaacs.
Connecting Collaborative Passion to a National Network
Podcast

Connecting Collaborative Passion to a National Network

15 February 2022

Tony Award-winning producer Mara Isaacs discusses how she puts collaboratively creative work in front of national audiences through her producing organization, Octopus Theatricals. This final episode of season two holds hot takes on boards, theatricality, and the connective tissue around artist-centered producing.

Poster for Addressless.
A Conversation About the Making of Addressless
Video

A Conversation About the Making of Addressless

An interactive theatrical game about housing insecurity

Tuesday 11 January 2022
United States

Rattlestick and Center for International Theatre Development presented a conversation about the making of Addressless livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network Tuesday 11 January 2022 at 12 p.m. PST (Los Angeles, UTC -8) / 2 p.m. CST (Chicago, UTC -6) / 3 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5) / 20:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 21:00 CET (Budapest, UTC +1).

Two women sitting across from each other being filmed in a living room.
Podcasts and Zooms and Plays, Oh My!
Essay

Podcasts and Zooms and Plays, Oh My!

Creating Non-Theatre

10 January 2022

Ezra Brain reflects on the unique process of creating and performing the new work Our Childhood Sucked and shares what the theatre community can learn from creating digital “non-theatre.”

From the Ground Up Podcast image featuring Rachel Dickstein.
Process Performances and the Completion Commission
Podcast

Process Performances and the Completion Commission

15 December 2021

Rachel Dickstein, Artistic Director of Ripe Time, takes us through her experience with Center Theatre Group’s completion commission for their adaptation of SLEEP. She also spotlights some necessary and helpful relationships with tour presenting partners, the Association of Performing Arts Professionals, as well as champion and friend Diane Rodriguez.

event poster for no summary with headshots of artistic director Sahar Assaf and playwright Adam Ashraf Elsayigh.
NO SUMMARY: Adam Ashraf Elsayigh
Video

NO SUMMARY: Adam Ashraf Elsayigh

Sahar Assaf in conversation with playwright Adam Ashraf Elsayigh, author of Drowning in Cairo

Friday 3 December 2021
United States

Golden Thread presented NO SUMMARY with Adam Ashraf Elsayigh livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Friday 3 December 2021 at 11 a.m. PST (San Francisco, UTC -8) / 1 p.m. CST (Chicago, UTC -6) / 2 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5).

Performer with puppet.
Roma Heroes, Superpowers, and Human Agency: Exploring Taboo Topics in Independent Theater Hungary’s Festivals
Essay

Roma Heroes, Superpowers, and Human Agency: Exploring Taboo Topics in Independent Theater Hungary’s Festivals

11 November 2021

Pulling from works in the Independent Theater Hungary’s annual Roma Heroes International Theatre Festival, Rosamaria Kostic Cisneros discusses the ways that festival artists created and staged nuanced depictions of Roma life. Cisneros highlights several of these plays and pays particular attention to their representations of potentially taboo material.

poster for the panel discussion.
Adaptation and New Creation
Video

Adaptation and New Creation

Featuring Meme Garcia, Lauren Gunderson, Avi Amon, Réal Vargas Alanis, and Fran Astorga

Thursday 21 October 2021
United States

In this panel invited playwrights featured a part of the New American Theatre Festival discuss their process of creation and adaptation. Playwrights include Avi Amon, Lauren Gunderson, Réal Alanis, Meme Garcia and Fran Astorga. The conversation will be moderated by Amrita Ramanan. We will discuss with each writer leaning into the power of joy and decentering the tropes of trauma.

Seven people sitting on a lit-up rooftop.
Centering Artists and The Development of New Work
Essay

Centering Artists and The Development of New Work

7 October 2021

Miranda Wright discusses the vitality of supporting new work development in the field and shares learnings from her experiences doing so as the founder of Los Angeles Performance Practice (LAPP) and the Live Arts Exchange (LAX) Festival.

A group of women and children.
Applied Theatre for Community Development in Nigeria
Essay

Applied Theatre for Community Development in Nigeria

26 July 2021

Kofoworola Owokotomo shares the theatre for development processes she undertook with a team of students to tackle issues of drug abuse, tribalism, and poor attitudes towards education in two Nigerian communities.

one actors posing in front of a wheel while two actors watch
The Rest of Our Lives
Video

The Rest of Our Lives

With Reactor's Laboratory for creation and experiment

Sunday 25 July 2021
Cluj, Romania

Reactor presented a performance of The Rest of Our Lives livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network on Sunday 25 July 2021 at 20:00 EEST (Cluj, UTC +3) / 19:00 CEST (Berlin, UTC +2) / 18:00 BST (London, UTC +1) / 1 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 12 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 10 a.m. PDT (Los Angeles, UTC -7).

an actor at a microphone stands behind actor holding a computer facing the camera.
Interior-Light
Video

Interior-Light

With Reactor's Laboratory for creation and experiment

Tuesday 27 July
Cluj, Romania

Reactor presented a performance of Interior-Light livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network, date to be announced.

A woman drinking water and sitting down on a chair surrounded by other chairs and onstage "woods".
“Layers of Distance”: On Loop as a Pandemic Play
Essay

“Layers of Distance”: On Loop as a Pandemic Play

13 July 2021

Kate Purdum shares the challenges and successes of creating a hybrid virtual and in-person production of On Loop at Barnard College.