This open submissions process (open to anyone, agented or not) is how the majority of projects find their way to O'Neill's two summer national new works conferences, the Music Theater conference and the National Playwrights conference. The conference offers rehearsals and readings of dawning scripts.
Submissions for the National Playwrights Conference must be postmarked from Sept. 15, 2008, through Oct. 17, 2008. Details of submission requirements for the National Playwrights Conference are available at the O'Neill's website: www.theoneill.org/prog/plays/playapp.htm.
(The submission period for the 2009 National Music Theater Conference is Sept. 1-Dec. 1.)
The O'Neill's open submission process "is unique in the field of developing works for the stage," according to the not-for-profit. "It is a key element in its Conference mission to encourage creativity and develop diverse voices and new works for the American stage. Applicants may submit work for consideration through a multi-tiered selection process involving multiple readers and a panel of theatre professionals who consider projects based on each writer's voice as presented in the script and not on a recognizable name or previous accomplishments. This process enables the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center to continue to seek and develop new voices for the stage. Selected artists receive a developmental residency at the O'Neill during the summer of 2009." The O'Neill also continues to build its endowment to support the open submissions process, begun in 2006 and named in honor of O'Neill playwright Wendy Wasserstein. Income from this permanent endowment will be used to defray costs associated with the submissions and selection process. Call (860) 443-5378 ext 217 for more information about making a gift to the Wendy Wasserstein Fund.
Wendy C. Goldberg, artistic director of the National Playwrights Conference, noted, "This Conference belongs to the playwrights, and I believe that it is imperative to allow the playwrights who submit their work the opportunity to have their plays read and considered seriously for the conference. I remain committed to the open submission process and it is a priority for the Playwrights Conference to seek out the best writers through this endeavor."
Submissions for the Music Theater Conference must be postmarked from Sept. 1, 2008, through Dec. 1, 2008. Details of submission requirements for the Music Theater Conference are available at the O'Neill's website: www.theoneill.org/prog/music/submit.htm.
For further information about either conference, please contact Martin Kettling, literary manager, at (860) 443-5378, ext 227 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.