Playwrights Horizons 2019 Theatrical Fellowship

Playwrights Horizons 2019 Theatrical Fellowship

This is an investment in your career. And it’s going to be a year of living on a stipend. And it’s an investment in yourself. But as perhaps my favorite former fellow and associate says that was graduate school. I was the Marketing Fellow 2010-2011. So some ‘Edward Albee’ through ‘The Shaggs.’ I remember them all well. And then I became the Telesales Assistant and Marketing Assistant for about six months and ran a summer campaign. And then was the Associate General Manager for three years in team GM. Well I remember you saying, “You know, I know you don’t have all the experience, but I want to teach you.” And you trusted me that I could learn. I did a workshop here a couple of months ago and it felt so special to be here. Having been on the other side of it a couple of years back I felt like it was some sort of full circle moment for me. As a fellow I think one of the things I’m most excited about, of course I’m so sad to to know that this is going to end at some point, but I’m so excited to just know that there’s gonna be a day where I come back in any capacity and I’m just gonna be so welcomed. The most valuable thing that I learned as a fellow at Playwrights is that I can do this job. It’s that you can do it and you have been doing it for the past year. And you have that security of being at your home as, Playwrights as your home. So then you know that you always have your home to fall back to. I guess walking into the residency I knew loosely that I wanted to be a playwright, but I felt like when I left I knew what that actually meant. How a script, when you send it to a literary office, what they’re actually reading and how they’ll discuss it and then how they’ll program it and how they’ll market it and how just all of the steps from page to stage. I don’t know if I would have the career that I have right now if it wasn’t for this fellowship. I got to work with three very different PSMs so I got to see different stage management styles. So I got to learn a whole lot in an Off-Broadway environment that wasn’t a classroom environment fresh out of school. Playwrights is so good at working together. The staff share ideas and there isn’t a lot of hierarchy or siloing. And I observed always keeping the art central and having a great model of that at Playwrights is something that I think about all the time. I loved so much sitting in on those workshops and watching Anne Washburn and The Civilians make ‘Mr. Burns, a post-electric play’ and seeing Michael Friedman with the musicians. They’re just so many amazing collaborations I feel like I got to observe as a fly on a wall that changed how I thought about how theater gets made. Every job that I’ve gotten pretty much has snowballed, I think from this fellowship. I got my first job outside of Playwrights ASMing on ‘What the Constitution Means to Me’ at Clubbed Thumb. And Ashley Rose offered me that job. Who also was a fellow. She’s the ASM on ‘Band’s Visit.’ I had no idea that accepting that job would, you know, that I would take that job and ride it all the way to Broadway basically two years later. It’s because of this fellowship the connections that I made through all the different stage managers I worked with and talked with. It was invaluable and way better than going to grad school. To be able to make a contribution to the next set of management and artistic leaders what could be better than that. What what could be more rewarding.

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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