Native Voices: Request for Proposals & Call for Scripts

*Please note that we only accept submissions written for the stage or theatre by American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and First Nations artists.

Request for Proposals

Deadline: March 15, 2022

We at Native Voices believe stories are medicine. We believe many plays live inside every one of us. We believe representation matters, and for far too long, our stories have been absent from the American Stage.

Native Voices at the Autry, a theatre company dedicated to the development and production of new works for the stage by American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and First Nations playwrights, is happy to announce this request for proposals for multigenerational audiences. 

Through Generation Now, a partnership with four other theatre companies - Children's Theatre Company, Latino Theater Company, Ma-Yi, and Penumbra - and generously funded by a Mellon grant, Native Voices will co-commission four playwrights over the next five years to create and develop three straight plays and one musical for young people to serve a multigenerational audience.

Selected playwrights will receive $15,000 USD ($25,000 USD for a musical) for the creation of a script and its development. Native Voices and Children’s Theatre Company will each host one workshop with artistic support from a dramaturg, director, stage manager, and cast of actors. Playwright(s) transportation and lodging will be provided for both workshops. While the goal of this collaboration is for a full production in Los Angeles and/or Minneapolis, it is not guaranteed or funded by this commission.

Proposals can include the following:

  1. Explanation of topic, theme, or idea for play/musical –

What is the central question you want to explore in your play? What ideas do you want to investigate? If you had to choose one or two themes, what would they be? Why is this particular topic important now? 

  1. Reason(s) why multigenerational work interests you –

Note that it is not important that you have written for this audience before. What message do you hope an audience can take away from this play?

  1. Other artists attached to the project –

If this is a musical, do you have a composer or musical director you want to work with? Are you writing with another person? Are there community members who would need to be consulted?

Ideas for inspiration: 

  • How would traditional characters and figures interact with a young person today?
  • What stories inspired and delighted you as a child?
  • Are there events happening today or in history that inspire you and need to be told?
  • Are there albums or songwriters who inspire you?
  • If there are books or songs that you are interested in exploring, we can look into rights.

Selection Process

Proposals are requested by March 15, 2022. They should be a maximum of two pages and submitted as a PDF document through the following form (https://bit.ly/NVGenNow). A 20-page sample of your previous work is also requested. 

Based on a thoughtful proposal, selected playwrights will be invited to a conversation with Native Voices and a panel of theatre professionals to discuss the ideas submitted. 

One to two commissions will be awarded this year, with the other commissions awarded in subsequent years. 

*Please note: Proposals must be for a new play/musical, having never been produced or developed by another artistic institution and must be by American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and First Nations artists.

**If you have any questions or if the deadline creates a barrier to your submission, please feel free to email Elisa Blandford, eblandford@theautry.org

Call for Full-Length Plays

Deadline: August 2, 2022

Native Voices is accepting submissions of full-length plays (60+ pages) by American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and First Nations playwrights addressing all themes and topics.

2023 Playwrights Retreat and 29th Festival of New Plays

The Retreat and Festival bring artists to Los Angeles to work on a selected number of plays through a rigorous directorial and dramaturgical commitment for 8–10 days in June. The Retreat culminates in public staged readings of the plays at the Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angeles. Selected playwrights receive artistic support as well as an honorarium; out-of-town artists receive roundtrip airfare plus lodging in Southern California.

Selection Process

Full-length plays (60+ pages) received by August 2, 2022 will be read and evaluated. A select number of playwrights will be invited to submit formal proposals detailing their developmental goals should their play be chosen for the short list. Scripts will then be sent to a committee of nationally recognized theatre artists for further evaluation. With their help, Native Voices selects up to four plays for the Playwrights Retreat and Festival of New Plays. Playwrights will be notified in March 2023.

A Note About the Native Voices Distance Dramaturgy Process

Months prior to residencies, selected playwrights participate in dramaturgical conversations with an assigned director and dramaturg. Workshops with these creative teams and a cast of professional actors commence once the playwright arrives on-site. It is important to note that these conversations and workshops are playwright driven, allowing the writer to shape their own developmental path. Selected playwrights should be prepared to dedicate adequate time to this process prior to arriving on-site.

2023 OPEN Submission for Production Consideration

We accept scripts all year long. Do you have a full-length script that has been developed and produced that you would like us to consider for a future Native Voices production in Los Angeles? Please follow the Checklist for All Submissions below and in the Native Voices Script Submission form check the box for 2023 General Production Consideration.

Checklist for Call for Scripts

  • Please label script attachment as follows: PlayTitle_Author’s Last Name, First Initial (Example: MyNewPlay_Doe, J.doc).
  • All submissions must conform to a standard play-script format (one-inch margins, #12 Times or Courier font, all pages numbered).
  • Include a title page with full contact information (mailing address, phone numbers, e-mail address) and a draft or revision date.
  • Include a character breakdown at the beginning of your script.
  • Provide a biography of 75–100 words. Please label attachment as follows: Bio_Author’s Last Name, First Initial (Example: Bio_Doe, J.doc).
  • Provide a press ready photo of at least 300dpi. Please label attachment as follows: Photo_Author’s Last Name, First Initial (Example: Photo_Doe, J.doc).
  • Provide development history for the play. Label attachment as follows: DevHistory_PlayTitle_Author’s Last Name, First Initial (Example: DevHistory_MyNewPlay_Doe, J.doc).
  • To submit, fill out our online form and upload your submission materials here: Native Voices Script Submission Form

Please do not send treatments or outlines. Previously produced plays should be submitted under the 2023 General Submission for Production Consideration. Playwrights are encouraged to make multiple submissions (up to three per event), but selection will be limited to only one play per playwright, per event.

For More Information:

NVLiterary@theautry.org

Facebook.com/NativeVoices

Twitter.com/NativeVoices

Native Voices is Sponsored By

ACTORS’ EQUITY FOUNDATION • THE ANDREW W. MELLON FOUNDATION • LAURA AND DEAN BERESFORD • JUDITH CHIRLIN • DEPARTMENT OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS, CITY OF LOS ANGELES • EDISON INTERNATIONAL • JOYCE AND DAVID EVANS • CAROLE GOLDBERG AND DUANE CHAMPAGNE • DAVID HITZ • LEE HORWIN • HELENE JACOBS • JUDY JACOBS • LYNN JEFFRIES • LOS ANGELES COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF ARTS AND CULTURE • EMILY MANN • NBCUNIVERSAL • NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS • THE NISSAN FOUNDATION • PETER GLENVILLE FOUNDATION • JOHN QUICK AND MARTHA WIEDMAN • SEELEY W. MUDD FOUNDATION • JEAN BRUCE SCOTT AND RANDY REINHOLZ • DARYL AND STEVEN ROTH • RUTHERFORD FALLS • SHUBERT FOUNDATION, INC. • SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT • SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA GAS COMPANY • U.S. BANK • WALT DISNEY IMAGINEERING • KATE AND JIM WOLF-PIZOR