The Many Voices Mentorship is intended to support Minnesota Black artists, artists of color, and/or Indigenous artists (what's this?) who are new to playwriting but demonstrate artistic potential and an interest in learning more about the craft, and who will be able to take advantage of the resources the Playwrights' Center provides. The mentorship provides a $2,000 stipend, $700 in funds to develop work, and free access to over $1,500 in services designed to introduce beginning playwrights to the craft of playwriting. These services can include a staged reading with professional actors, multi-week classes taught by leading playwriting professionals, an array of one-night seminars, and a two-year Playwrights' Center membership.
Applicants must be current residents of Minnesota. Recipients must maintain residency in Minnesota, within 75 miles of the Twin Cities, during the mentorship year (July 1, 2024-June 30, 2025) and have the legal right to work in the United States. Applicants must not have had any plays fully produced by a professional theater by the time of the application. Productions which open after December 7, 2023 do not count. Current or past Playwrights' Center Core Writers or recipients of other Playwrights' Center writing fellowships are not eligible to apply. Playwrights may not receive more than two Many Voices Mentorships. Previous Many Voices Mentees applying for an additional term must submit a different writing sample from the one included in their previous successful application." Staff and board members of the Jerome Foundation and the Playwrights' Center and their immediate family members are not eligible. Students who will be in K-12 education programs during the mentorship year are not eligible. Students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate degree programs are eligible. Recipients are encouraged to participate in at least two six-week classes over the course of the year.
The experience of hearing my work aloud with actors who really understand my characters from a deeply authentic part of their innerself is the best part of being a playwright for me. Any time I experience synergy with the players of my work it encourages me to keep writing and emphasizes the importance of my work in this expansive canon of storytelling.
Overall I can say I made great use of the time I had this year. I did what felt right to do. I was inspired. I was challenged. I wrote. I read. I learned. I connected with my cohort, and I made some theater. The Many Voices Mentorship program is one of the highlights of my career as it has opened up new possibilities for me creatively, professionally, and personally by giving me a larger network of collaborators, friends, mentors, and playwrights’ to watch
Many Voices Mentee, 2021-22
(NOTE: The primary language used by evaluators during the selection process is English. If text is intentionally written not in English, a line of context would be helpful to an evaluator. Playwrights’ Center acknowledges this is an ethnocentric practice. While most Fellowship activities and engagements are conducted in English, Playwrights' Center staff are available to discuss additional support and resources as necessary.)
Each application will contain the following pieces:
(including contact details, eligibility, and demographic information)
-Resume or biography (any legible format)
-1 page Artistic Statement and Goals
Please attach a statement of no more than one page that addresses the following questions: What is your interest in and/or experience with playwriting? How will this mentorship aid in your artistic development? What are your goals during the mentorship year? This statement, along with your writing sample, should reflect your vision as an artist.
Please attach a writing sample of no more than 30 pages. Any genre of text-based work is acceptable (play scripts, screenplays, poetry, fiction, nonfiction, etc.). If you have a play script to send, this is generally the strongest sample for the panelists to evaluate. The sample may be a selection of shorter works totaling no more than 30 pages.
-Two letters of recommendation
Please request two letters of recommendation from individuals who are familiar with your work as an artist. Letters must be received by the application deadline: December 7, 2023. You will be sending a request through the application portal below. You may request letters through the application system before finishing your final application, so we recommend that you click on the link below and begin your application sooner rather than later to give your recommenders time to complete their letters. Letters of recommendation from previous applications cannot be re-used for this program.
Questions may be addressed to Artistic Programs Manager Julia Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: You will need to make a SlideRoom account in order to apply. If you are a Playwrights' Center member, your PWC login will not automatically log you in to SlideRoom—they are two different systems. If you already have a SlideRoom account, you should be able to access the application using your existing login.
For a video tutorial on using SlideRoom, please click here.
We are offering a working session on Monday, November 27, 2023—in partnership with Springboard for the Arts—on the topic of creating successful artist statements. Register for this free event here.
Applications for the 2023-24 Many Voices Mentorship are due Thursday, December 7, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. CST.
An information session about the application and program was held on Tuesday, November 14, 2023 at 12:00 p.m. CT on Zoom. A recording of that session is available below.