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Monday, February 13, 2023

The Emerging Playwrights Program (EPP) seeks LGBTQ playwrights from the Mid-Atlantic Region


Deadline: February 26, 2023 at 11:59 PM

The Strides Collective, a nonprofit queer theatre company in Philadelphia, is seeking emerging playwrights to participate in the 2023 Cohort of our Emerging Playwrights Program.

Applications will be accepted until February 26 through our online application portal at https://www.stridescollective.com/epp-2023.

The Emerging Playwrights Program (EPP) is a 10-month virtual playwriting cohort. During this time, participants will read and give feedback on fellow cohort members’ work, have access to professional development resources provided by the Collective, and work one-on-one with Strides's Resident Dramaturg Chaz T. Martin. The program culminates in a live, in-person reading of selections from the cohort’s work in Philadelphia, where the Collective and other industry leaders will be present. It is a highly collaborative development process, meant to facilitate the growth of a finished draft of a play that could benefit from the resources provided. Please note that this program is an unpaid opportunity.

Submissions are open NOW and will be accepted until 11:59pm on February 26th!


The Strides Collective defines "emerging" as those playwrights whose work has not been produced professionally and is unpublished. The opportunity is open to queer-identifying playwrights who may be new to the play development process, and/or queer playwrights who have not yet developed their work with a specifically queer creative team.

Playwrights must be 18+ and reside in the Mid-Atlantic Region (Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, or Maryland / the Metro D.C. Area), as a goal of the program is to foster the growth of a robust network of queer artists local to or near Philadelphia.


Playwrights must submit a full draft of the play they would like to work on as part of the cohort. Though it does not need to be a final, polished draft, we are unable to consider applications that are still in the “concept” stage.

Plays must align with the mission of The Strides Collective (“...embrace the queer experience through authentic, modern, and innovative storytelling.”)

We are seeking plays that require no more than five actors (doubling of parts may be considered) and are:

-Based in realism and/or magical realism
-Modern (Set in present day, or within the last few years/near future)
-Original in content
-Full length

We are not seeking plays that are:

-Period pieces or works of historical fiction
-Biographies of real people
-Plays for Young Audiences


Throughout the program, cohort members will meet at least once a month in a collaborative writers’ room to discuss their work and engage in one-on-one feedback sessions with Resident Dramaturg Chaz T. Martin. Cohort members will also have the opportunity to meet with Artistic Director Jonathan Edmondson and to engage in larger Strides Collective programming.

In the last months of the program, members will begin to polish their plays and select a cut of their scripts to present at a live reading in Philadelphia. Readings will be recorded for playwrights’ future use.

The Strides Collective considers this program an investment in both the playwright and the play. Graduates of the Program will walk away with experience giving/receiving dramaturgical feedback, workshopping their script with actors, and a multitude of professional development and networking opportunities to jumpstart their careers as playwrights.


The deadline for submissions is 11:59 pm on Sunday, February 26th, 2023. Interviews for applicants in consideration will occur on a rolling basis, with final selections made before April 5th, 2023. Cohort meetings will begin remotely on or around April 10th, 2023 with a culminating presentation in December 2023 in Philadelphia.

Any questions/concerns? Reach out to Associate Artistic Director Gauri Mangala: gmangala@stridescollective.com

Due to the high volume of plays we anticipate receiving, we will not be able to reach out to everyone who submits, but we thank you deeply for your submission and for sharing your heart and work for us.  

Submissions will only be accepted through our application portal at https://www.stridescollective.com/epp-2023. Scripts that are emailed will not be considered.

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