The Drama League Stage Directing Fellowships

Applications Open Fall 2023


A partnership with Manhattan Theatre ClubMcCarter Theatre CenterDallas Theater CenterNew York Stage and FilmRed Bull Theater, and Theatre Communications Group.

The Drama League Stage Directing Fellowships provide a wide range of opportunities for early-career directors, to create multiple avenues of future success in the theater industry.  Providing significant financial support and health insurance reimbursement, creative retreats, network development, and residencies at multiple theater companies, The Drama League Stage Directing Fellowships also offer opportunities to direct readings and productions throughout the two-year experience.

Icarus Jones, directed by Chika Ike
Martin Fisher, Cherrye J. Davis, and Eric Lockley in alum Chika V. Ike's 2020 DirectorFest production of The Sporting Life of Icarus Jones by Marcus Gardley. Photo by Brian Gustaveson

The Drama League Stage Directing Fellowships are for stage directors in the early stages of their professional career.  Please see our F.A.Q. page for eligibility questions.  Applications are especially welcome from directors who identify as members of populations that have historically been denied equity, access, inclusion or belonging in the field and in society, who have been marginalized, underrepresented, and/or those whose paths to direction may have been nonlinear or nontraditional.

Meet and Greet (1)
Alum Jennifer Chang presents design ideas for her 2019 DirectorFest production of The Clitorish by Mara Nelson-Greenberg. Photo by Lloyd Mulvey

Fellowship Outline

Fellowship Duration

24 Months Total
May 2022-March 2024
plus eight additional weeks for final Directing Project (Schedule TBD)

Fellowship Frequency

Offered every other year (2022, 2024, etc.)

Fellowship Recipients

Two recipients each cycle

Scholarship Prize

$100,000 ($50,000 per year)

Health Insurance Reimbursement

$10,000 ($5,000 per year)

Fellowship Timeline

Year One

Click each month for program details

Year Two

Click each month for program details

Additional Benefits

  • Travel and housing expenses for some program activities
    (see program description for details)
  • VIP Pass to all publicly offered Drama League programming during Fellowship
  • Opportunity to serve as a Drama League Awards Nominator for the length of the Fellowship Period
  • Peer-to-peer Mentorship from established director
  • Access to Alumni Programming and Events
  • Lifetime Drama League Artistic Membership
  • Tickets to theatre series productions at partner theaters
  • Theatre Communications Group Membership
Stump Sprouts Ensemble Photo - 2018 (1) (1)
2018 Fellows, staff, and actors at the Directing Intensive. Photo by John Concado

You may find your answer on our F.A.Q. page for artists, 
which includes information about eligibility, application materials, and more. 


The Drama League Fellowships are career-transforming opportunities for stage directors focusing on creative learning, skill building, and career development.


The Drama League Residencies develop and incubate director-led projects for live performances, utilizing the resources of The Drama League in New York City.

About the Partners

The Drama League Directing Fellowship is a partnership between The Drama League of New York, Inc. (Gabriel Stelian-Shanks, Artistic Director; Bevin Ross, Executive Director), Dallas Theater Center (Kevin Moriarty, Artistic Director); Manhattan Theatre Club (Lynne Meadow, Artistic Director; Barry Grove, Executive Producer; Nicki Hunter, Artistic Producer); McCarter Theatre Center (Sarah Rasmussen, Artistic Director; Nicole A. Watson, Associate Artistic Director); New York Stage and Film (Christopher Burney, Artistic Director; Thomas Pearson, Executive Director; Liz Carlson, Artistic Producer); Red Bull Theater (Jesse Berger, Artistic Director); and Theatre Communications Group (Teresa Eyring, Executive Director/CEO; Adrian Budhu, Deputy Director/COO).

The Drama League Logo, blue in a bold and wide font

The Drama League is a home for stage directors, and a platform for dialogue with, and between, the audiences they inspire.  Founded in 1916, the organization is one of the longest-running, continuously operating arts service organizations in the United States.  To support its programs for artists, or to become a member of its community, please visit

One of the leading regional theaters in the country, Dallas Theater Center (DTC) performs to an audience of more than 90,000 North Texas residents annually. Founded in 1959, DTC is now a resident company of the AT&T Performing Arts Center and presents its mainstage season at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre in the Dallas Arts District. DTC also presents at its original home, the Kalita Humphreys Theater, the only freestanding theater designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright. DTC engages, entertains and inspires a diverse community by creating experiences that stimulate new ways of thinking and living by consistently producing plays, educational programs and community initiatives that are of the highest quality and reach the broadest possible constituency.

MANHATTAN THEATRE CLUB, under the leadership of Artistic Director Lynne Meadow and Executive Producer Barry Grove, has become one of the country’s most prominent and prestigious theatre companies. Over more than four decades, MTC productions have earned numerous awards including 7 Pulitzer Prizes, 27 Tony Awards, 40 Drama Desk Awards and 49 Obie Awards. MTC has a Broadway home at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street) and two Off-Broadway theatres at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street). For more information on MTC, please visit

MTC is committed to doing the ongoing institutional work to reassess our practices and to reaffirm our goal of achieving an anti-racist organization which respects and honors all of the voices heretofore underrepresented in our industry. For more information on the actions we are taking, please visit

McCarter’s mission is to create stories and experiences that enliven minds, expand imaginations, and engage communities. An independent not-for-profit performing arts center located between New York City and Philadelphia – and on the campus of Princeton University – McCarter is a multi-disciplinary creative and intellectual hub offering theater productions, music, dance, spoken word, and educational programs for all ages.

Celebrated for developing new work, and winner of the 1994 Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre, world premieres include Christopher Durang’s Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike (Tony Award for Best Play), Tarell Alvin McCarey’s The Brother/Sister Plays, Emily Mann’s Having Our Say, and Danai Gurira’s The Convert.

Highlights of McCarter’s 21/22 season include Branford Marsalis, Audra McDonald, David Sedaris, Mark Morris Dance, Roseanne Cash, the popular rock band Lake Street Dive, Valerie June, National Geographic Live, and two joyous musicals – Dreaming Zenzile, based on the life of Miriam Makeba, and Ride The Cyclone. Digital programming has opened the door to new opportunities with Paula Vogel’s Bard at the Gate and a bilingual family show Sugar Skull, celebrating the holiday of Día de los Muertos.

McCarter connects with the community year-round with a Shakespeare Community Reading Group, holiday programs, a free outdoor concert series, local partnerships in Trenton and Princeton, and in-school artistic residencies. McCarter and Princeton University share a long history of unique collaborations and commissions including the Roger S. Berlind Playwright in Residence program and the Princeton and Slavery Project.

New York Stage and Film is a not-for-profit company dedicated to both emerging and established artists in the development of new works for theater, film and television. Since 1985, New York Stage and Film has played a significant role in the development of new plays, provided a home for a diverse group of artists free from critical and commercial pressures, and established itself as a vital cultural institution for residents of the Hudson Valley and the New York metropolitan region. 

Red Bull Theater brings rarely seen classic plays to dynamic new life for contemporary audiences. Our work unites a respect for tradition with a modern sensibility.Red  Bull  Theater  is  named  for  the  rowdy  Jacobean  playhouse  that  illegally  performed  plays  in  England  during  the  years  of  Puritan  rule,  and  was  the  first  London  theater  to  reopen after the Restoration. This bold spirit is central to our identity. 
       With the Jacobean plays  of  Shakespeare  and  his  contemporaries  as  our  cornerstone,  Red  Bull  Theater  is  New  York  City’s  home  for  dynamic  performances  of  great  plays  that  stand  the  test  of  time. The company also produces new works that are in conversation with the classics. Red  Bull  Theater  delights  and  engages  the  intellect  and  imagination  of  audiences.  A  home for artists, scholars and students, we strive to make our work accessible, diverse, and welcoming to all theatergoers. Educational as well as entertaining, our work keeps a rich and vital tradition thriving.Red Bull Theater believes in the power of great classic stories and plays of heightened language  to  deepen  our  understanding  of  the  human  condition.  We  believe  in  the  special ability of live theater to create unique, collective experiences. And we believe in the timeless capacity of classical theater to illuminate the events of our times.
       Founded in 2003 with a production of Shakespeare’s Pericles, Red Bull Theater has been acclaimed by The New York Times as “a dynamic producer of classic plays” and by Time Out New York as “the most exciting classical theater in New York.” In  our  17-year  history,  Red  Bull  Theater  has  produced  21  Off-Broadway  Productions  and  nearly  200  Revelation  Readings  of  rarely  seen  classics,  serving  5,000  artists  and  providing quality artistic programming to an audience of 65,000. The company’s unique programming has received ongoing critical acclaim, and has been recognized with Lortel, Drama Desk, Drama League, Calloway, Off Broadway Alliance, and Obie nominations and Awards.

Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for theatre, leads for a just and thriving theatre ecology. Since its founding in 1961, TCG’s constituency has grown from a handful of groundbreaking theatres to over 700 Member Theatres and affiliate organizations and over 7,000 Individual Members. Through its programs and services, TCG reaches over one million students, audience members, and theatre professionals each year. TCG offers networking and knowledge-building opportunities through research, communications, and events, including the annual TCG National Conference, one of the largest nationwide gatherings of theatre people; awards grants and scholarships to theatre companies and individual artists; advocates on the federal level; and through the Global Theater Initiative, TCG’s partnership with the Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics, serves as the U.S. Center of the International Theatre Institute. TCG is North America’s largest independent trade publisher of dramatic literature, with 18 Pulitzer Prizes for Drama on the TCG booklist. It also publishes the award-winning American Theatre magazine and ARTSEARCH®, the essential source for a career in the arts. TCG believes its vision of “a better world for theatre, and a better world because of theatre” can be achieved through individual and collective action, adaptive and responsive leadership, and equitable representation in all areas of practice. TCG is led by executive director and CEO Teresa Eyring and deputy director and COO Adrian Budhu.