LIT Council

APPLICATION DEADLINE: AUGUST 3

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR THE APPLICATION FORM!

In partnership with The Tank, LIT Council is a development intensive for Male Playwrights of Color. During their time with the Council (September 2018 through April 2019), writers will hone a play guided by the Bechdel Test to ensure gender equity in storytelling. The program will culminate in a reading workshop of each participant’s play, hosted at The Tank (312 West 36th Street between 8th and 9th Avenue). In order to further promote collaboration and communication between genders, each play will be attached to a female director of color, chosen from a group of professionals and mentors, who will be active presences throughout the process.

For each session, participants will receive feedback and mentorship from 3 professional Facilitators: Beto O’Byrne (playwright-in-residence at Stella Adler; 2050 Playwriting Fellow at New York Theatre Workshop), Jerome A. Parker (MacDowell and Dramatist Guild Fellow), and Akin Salawu (Inaugural Emerging Writers Group at The Public Theater; two-time Tribeca All Access Winner) are all writers of color with working experience in the industry and theatrical credits in New York City and around the country. They created LIT Council with the Tank to have a professional setting where whiteness is de-centered and the “white gaze” isn’t a deterrent or the raison d’etre for a play’s birth, voice and steps in the world. Participants will be pushed to create works where female characters are given equal weight to their male counterparts and also supported to stretch their voice in writing for, and collaborating with, women.

LIT Council seeks daring applicants of color from all levels, and ALL who identify as male, to work on a play already in progress. The chosen participants will demonstrate great appetite and aptitude for crafting uncompromised stories, while understanding the pressing need to represent “other” voices, especially those of women, fully in their work. As this is a collective, the Council looks for artists not only with experience in taking the reign of their own creative process, but also with a desire to collaborate with the other participating artists in the room. The Tank is located in New York, so applicants need to be NYC-based in order to participate in weekend meetings, readings and other program-related events.

THE FACILITATORS

Beto O’Byrne hails from East Texas and is the co-founder of Radical Evolution, a multi-ethnic, multi-disciplinary producing collective based in Brooklyn, NY. The author of 20 plays, screenplays, and original TV pilots, his works have been produced in San Antonio, Austin, Los Angeles and New York City, where was the most recent playwright-in-residence at the Stella Adler School of Acting and a 2050 Playwriting Fellow at New York Theatre Workshop. In addition, O’Byrne is an advocate for the performing arts field, having worked with organizations such as Theatre Communications Group, La Cooperativa of Latinx Theatre Artists of NYC, and the Latinx Theatre Commons. MFA, Dramatic Writing: University of Southern California. www.betoobyrne.com

Jerome A. Parker is a MacDowell and Dramatist Guild Fellow from New York City. His work has been developed through readings and productions at the Public Theater, the Old Vic, the Cherry Lane, Classical Theatre of Harlem, the National Black Theater, BAAD!, Company of Angels, American Lyric Theater, NY Stage and Film, Freedom Train Productions, Celebration Theater, On the Boards, the Musical Theater Factory, New York Musical Festival, and the Los Angeles Theater Center amongst others.

Akin Salawu is a two-time Tribeca All Access Winner with a BA from Stanford and a Screenwriting MFA from Columbia. At Stanford, Akin founded ergo student theater troupe and was awarded the Sherifa Omade Ego Prize for mounting culturally diverse theater. Akin was a member of The Public Theater’s Inaugural Emerging Writers Group and wrote Chapter 5 in the book, “The Obama Movement.” Akin also wrote 2 short plays on Ferguson for Chicago's American Theater. Akin developed his first musical The Real Whisper in Ars Nova’s Uncharted residency which premiered in the 2017 Polyphone Festival at The University of the Arts.

312 West 36th Street / First Floor / New York, NY 10018