2050 Artistic Fellowship At New York Theatre Workshop


For 20 years, NYTW has honed an inclusive fellowship program for emerging theatre makers with a multiplicity of perspectives. These fellowships have taken many forms, supporting playwrights, directors, designers and administrators.

In its current iteration, the 2050 Fellowship is a yearlong residency for emerging playwrights and directors. The 2050 Fellowship provides a space for experimentation, artistic and administrative support, and mentorship. The 2050 Fellows are emerging artists who, with their unique voices, give us perspective on the world in which we live; and who challenge us all to contend with this changing world.

What is a 2050 Artistic Fellow?

The 2050 Fellowship is named in celebration of the U.S. Census Bureau’s projection that by the year 2050, there will be no single racial or ethnic majority in the United States.

This projection provokes thoughts at New York Theatre Workshop about the transformations that will take place in the American landscape – technologically, environmentally, demographically and artistically. They are a catalyst for broader questions about our moral and artistic future.

How do we define diversity? Whose stories aren’t being told? What lies ahead for our world?

In response to these questions, NYTW’s expanded 2050 Artistic Fellowship program exists to support the diversity of voices and aesthetics that will make up this new minority majority.

The 2050 Fellows are early career artists who, with their unique voices, give us perspective on the world in which we live and who challenge us all to contend with this changing world.

With the 2050 Artistic Fellowship, NYTW is re-affirming our responsibility to nurture artists who reflect this multiplicity of perspectives, challenge the dominant paradigm, and give voice to those whose experiences are not often heard.

Meet the Fellows

2050 Fellows (2013 - Present)


MELIS AKER is an actor, writer and musician from Turkey. Plays include Field, Awakening (2018 Sundance Theatre Lab finalist, 2018 Berkeley Rep Ground Floor finalist, Lark’s 2018 Van Lier New Voices Fellowship finalist) which will receive a short run at the Signature Theatre and the Corkscrew Festival at Paradise Factory this spring; Manar (2017 Columbia@Roundabout finalist; 2016 Theatre503 Playwriting Award semi-finalist) which was accepted to Golden Thread Productions’ 2017 ReOrient Festival, LPAC’s 2017 Rough Draft Festival, and was part of Silk Road Rising’s featured Middle Eastern playwrights on New Play Exchange; 330 Pegasus: A Love Letter [Part I] (Lark’s 2018 Jerome New York Fellowship Finalist) which received a reading at NYTW via Noor Theatre’s Highlight series; Azul, Otra Vez [Blue, Revisited] which was workshopped at NYTW, directed by Tatiana Pandiani with music by Jacinta Clusellas, and at the BRICLab Residency. Selected acting credits include “The Blacklist: Redemption” (NBC), Love in Afghanistan (Arena Stage/Roundabout), Opium (New Dramatists), Tear A Root From the Earth (Kennedy Center/New Ohio), We Live in Cairo (New World Stages, NAMT). Melis recently gave a TEDx Talk in Ankara and will be performing in Daybreak (Pan Asian Rep). BA in Drama/Philosophy (Tufts), Acting (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art), 2018 MFA Playwriting (Columbia). melisaker.com

MICHAEL ALVAREZ is an international theatre director and is a recipient of the 2017 Drama League Directing Fellowship. His work in London includes a site-specific residency with Punchdrunk, leading new musical workshops with Mercury Musical Developments at the Royal Academy of Music and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, curating an international theater festival at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, creating performance art pieces at the British Museum, directing at the Arcola Theatre and Westminster Library and directing Susannah York and Edward Petherbridge in a workshop at Her Majesty’s Theatre in the West End. Additionally, he was a guest director in Ljubljana, Slovenia and at the Brighton Theatre Festival. Selected New York directing work includes Pistrix and Falcon and Sparrow both by Annie R. Such; Trouble: A New Rock Musical that he co-wrote with composer Ella Grace at the New York Musical Theatre Festival; andBack by Brett Epstein at Galley Players. Most recently, he directed Chekhov’s The Seagull in Los Angeles.Upcoming: Peter Pan at the Serenbe Playhouse. He is a member of the Lincoln Center Directors Lab, a graduate of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London and California Institute of the Arts. michael-alvarez.com

NANA DAKIN is a Thai-American director of new plays, classics, and devised performance based in New York City. Her work examines the way that culture is constructed and pursues social equity by unsettling dormant biases. Nana is a core member of B-Floor Theatre, Thailand’s vanguard physical theatre company. Her directorial work with B-Floor, Begin Again (2009) and Damage Joy (2011) ranked in the top 5 theatre productions of that year by the Bangkok Post. As an Assistant Director, she has worked with Anne Kauffman on Amy Herzog’s Mary Jane (NYTW), Anne Bogart on the SITI Company’s production of Euripedes’ The Bacchae (Getty Villa, BAM) and Leigh Silverman on Hansol Jung’s Wild Goose Dreams (The Public Theater). Recent projects include an all-female production of Shakespeare’s Richard III, Wonder/Wander: An Interactive Tarot Card Reading, and the development of new plays by Anchuli Felicia King, Gina Stevensen and Nora Sørena Casey. In May 2019, she will direct the world premiere of White Pearl by Anchuli Felicia King at The Royal Court in London. BA: Sarah Lawrence. MFA Theatre Directing: Columbia.  nanadakin.com 

PHILLIP HOWZE is a playwright whose work has been developed or produced at American AF Festival, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, BRIC-Arts Media, Clubbed Thumb, PRELUDE 2015, The Public Theater, San Francisco Playhouse, SPACE at Ryder Farm, and Yale Cabaret. A graduate of Yale School of Drama, he is a Fellow of the Sundance Institute Theater Lab, a Lucas Artist Fellow at Montalvo Arts Center, a member of the 2016 Emerging Writers Group at the Public Theater, and a Resident Writer at Lincoln Center Theater. His play Frontieres Sans Frontieres premiered at The Bushwick Starr in 2017 in a sold-out, extended engagement.

SEONJAE KIM. Originally from Seoul, South Korea, Seonjae (she/hers) collaboratively creates narrative-driven theater that is maximalist, epic, passionate, sincere and in robust conversation with the zeitgeist. Riot Antigone, her original Riot Grrrl musical adaptation of Sophocles’ tragedy, played at La MaMa in February 2017 and received subsequent productions at Ars Nova’s ANT Fest and Bryn Mawr College. She recently served as Associate Director for the immersive musical KPOP (Ars Nova/Ma-Yi/Woodshed Collective). Her work has been seen at Atlantic Theatre Company, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Dixon Place, Williamstown Theatre Festival, PEN/World Voices Festival, New York Theatre Barn, Prelude Festival, Checkmark Theatre Company and Chicago Fringe. She has assisted Pam MacKinnon, Bill Rauch and Stafford Arima and is an alumna of Directors’ Lab West, SITI Company Summer Workshop, Powerhouse Training, Williamstown Directing Corps and the Director’s Symposium and Playwrights’ Retreat at La MaMa Umbria. Honors include the Van Lier Fellowship for Directing (Asian American Arts Alliance), Mike Ockrent Fellowship (Stage Choreographers and Directors’ Foundation) and Robert Moss Directing Fellowship (Playwrights Horizons). Seonjae is a New Georges Affiliated Artist. This Spring, she is assisting Lee Sunday Evans on Dance Nation at Playwrights Horizons and developing projects about Tila Tequila, artificial intelligence, Southern belle mythology and more. BA: Northwestern.

DIVYA MANGWANI is a playwright from Pune, India, based in New York. She was the founder and Artistic Director of Moonbeam Factory Theatre (MFT), where she wrote and directed plays that were staged all over India, Singapore and Glasgow. MFT used theatre as a tool for education for underprivileged students and conducted workshops in high schools. Her plays include Yes, Uncle (semi-finalist, Page 73 Playwriting Fellowship 2018; finalist, Leah Ryan Fund for Emerging Women Writers 2018), Rise of the River (Pipeline Theatre Company), For Sale (Theatre East; Dramawallah Theatre), Turn off the Lights (Earth Day, Blue Frog), Sometimes, Stillness (a dance drama with djembe music) and One, Two, Three (best script, director, play and audience vote, Short+Sweet Festival; World Theatre Day, Khichidi Theatre). Before theatre, Divya worked as a journalist and editor for media houses like ESPN, Times of India and Crisis Response Journal. Her grandparents are from Sindh and she has grown up listening to stories about the Partition. She is currently working on a three-play cycle about Sindh. MFA: Tisch, NYU.

Tara Ahmadinejad
Elena Araoz
Jeff Augustin
Hilary Bettis
Lileana Blain-Cruz
Eleanor Burgess
Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm
Shayok Misha Chowdhury
Nathan Alan Davis
Will Davis
Mashuq Deen
Reginald L. Douglas
Sanaz Ghajarrahimi
Noelle Ghoussaini
Michel Hausmann
Hansol Jung
Patricia Ione Lloyd
Martyna Majok
Alexandru Mihail
Beta O’Byrne
Brian Otaño
Tatiana Pandiani
Ming Peiffer
Francis Weiss Rabkin
Danny Sharron
Danya Taymor
Stevie Walker-Webb
Whitney White
Nia Ostrow Witherspoon
Mo Zhou

Emerging Artist Fellows (2011-2013)

Jade King Carroll
Jackie Sibblies Drury
Kareem Fahmy
Simón Adinia Hanukai
Ed Sylvanus Iskandar
Julián J. Mesri
Janine Nabers
Matthew Paul Olmos
Tamilla Woodard
Pirronne Yousefzadeh
Zhu Yi
Catherine Yu

Emerging Artist of Color Fellows (1999-2011)

May Adrales
Aravind Enrique Adyanthaya
Chris Alonzo
Saheem Ali
Eduardo Andino
Thomas Bradshaw
Gilela Cardenas
Robert Castro
Kipp Erante Cheng
Julia Cho
Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas
Jihan Crowther
Jackie Sibblies Drury
Lydia Fort
Rafael Gallegos
Henry Guzman
Reshmi Hazra
Monica Henderson
Suzanne Hui Sun Kim
Ed Sylvanus Iskandar
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins
Patty Jang
Sonoko Kawahara
Ismail Khalidi
Bushra Laskar
Edward Bok Lee
Destiny Lily
Czerton Lim
Ignacio Lopez
Matthew Lopez
Aya Ogawa
Frederica Nascimento
Christopher Oscar Peña
Clint Ramos
Harrison David Rivers
S. Vasanti Saxena
Saïd Sayrafiezadeh
Deena Selenow
Suzi Takahashi
t. tara turk
Michael Winn
Pirronne Yousefzadeh

Citizen Exchange Corps (CEC) ArtsLink Fellows (1998-Present)

David Sakverilidze (Georgia)
Milan Govedarica (Serbia-Montenegro)
Olga Perevezentseva (Russia)
Bojan Djordjev (Serbia)
Ahmed El-Attar (Egypt)
Ahmed Eldeeb (Egypt)

Asian Cultural Council (ACC) Fellow

Yayoi Shimizu (Japan)

Two-Year Resident Fellows (2002-2010)

Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas (Artistic)
Rafael Gallegos (Artistic)
Adam Moore (Management)
Gita Reddy (Casting/Company Management)
Geoffrey Scott (Literary)
Niki Spruill (Production)
Liesl Tommy (Casting)
Lenora Pace (Directing)
Rubén Polendo (Directing)
Tracey Scott Wilson (Playwriting)

Theodore and Adele Shank Resident Playwriting Fellow (2008-2009)

Alex Lewin

Administrative Fellows (2007-2008)

Kristin McDonald
William Bryant Miles

Van Lier Emerging Artist of Color Playwriting Fellows (1995-1999)

Keith Josef Adkins
Tanya Barfield
Kipp Erante Cheng
Angela Counts
Cynthia Fujikawa
Fanni Green
Hilly Hicks
Jake-ann Jones
Chiori Miyagawa
Derek Nguyen
Carmen Rivera
Sung Rno
Said Sayrafiezadeh
Deborah Swisher
Dominic Taylor
Tracey S. Wilson

How to Apply

Application Information

Applications are now closed.

Frequently Asked Questions

2050 Fellowship Details

NYTW will accept up to six playwright or director 2050 Artistic Fellows per season. These fellowships will entail a one year commitment from June to June.

NYTW’s 2050 Fellowships consists of five basic components:

  • Monthly fellowship meetings where fellows meet with each other and artists from the NYTW community to discuss craft, aesthetics, and artistic development
  • Access to rehearsal space and two opportunities to share works-in-progress with the NYTW Artistic staff and entire fellowship cohort
  • Mentorship from the NYTW Artistic staff and contemporary theatre artists
  • An invitation to participate in the artistic life of the theatre by attending staff meetings, developmental readings, dress rehearsals, and other NYTW functions
  • A three-day weekend retreat at the start and end of the fellowship

2050 Fellows are awarded a modest stipend and an artistic development fund to support fellowship projects, attend performances, research and travel.

What makes a competitive applicant?

The 2050 Fellowship supports early career artists who exhibit outstanding artistry and whose voices are underrepresented in the theatre. We encourage applicants with a unique lived experience & point of view inclusive of race, ethnicity, gender, faith, socioeconomic status, disability and sexual orientation.

Can I apply as a playwright and a director?

You may submit as both a playwright and director–just be sure to indicate clearly in the application that you are interested in being considered for both disciplines. We strive to have a balance of playwrights and directors in the corps, and recognizing that these labels may not always be entirely representative of an artistic practice, provide great latitude in how fellows choose to work.

Must I live in New York City to apply?

We accept applications from artists not currently living in New York City; however, applicants must be available to travel to NYC at their own expense for interviews conducted during the months of February and March, and also must be willing and able to relocate to the NYC metro area for the duration of the fellowship. NYTW is unable to provide housing, relocation or employment assistance. Inability to attend regular meetings and events during the fellowship year may be considered grounds for discontinuation of the fellowship.

May I apply if I am a student?

Artists who will be enrolled in a full time educational institution (either undergraduate or graduate studies) for the duration of the fellowship year will not be considered. We encourage you to apply again during your final year of school to partake in the fellowship upon graduation.

Are non-U.S. citizens eligible to apply?

Yes; however, international applicants must take full responsibility for arranging their travel, travel documents and housing accommodations. Inquire with the U.S. Embassy or the consulate with jurisdiction over your place of permanent residence about visa application procedures. Receipt of fellowship stipend is dependent upon the type of visa secured. If awarded a 2050 Fellowship, you must provide Employment Eligibility Verification as detailed on Form I-9, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in order to receive the Fellowship stipend. If you cannot provide appropriate documentation, we will be unable to offer a stipend.

What is the application process?

After reviewing preliminary applications, NYTW will make invitations to those we wish to consider more fully for a 2050 Fellowship. Upon notification of invitation to apply, applicants will be asked to submit further materials, due in early December.

If I am invited to submit a full application, what materials will I be required to send?

In the past, applicants have been notified in November with a request for further materials. At that point, candidates have been required to submit:

  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • A 750-word fellowship plan, outlining how you would like to spend your fellowship year
  • Additional work samples:

For Directors: Up to 6 photos from one or more recent professional or academic production(s) with a brief explanation of three of the moments in these photos including, but not limited to what makes the moment significant, how the moment was built, etc.. With this sample, we are not looking for a description or summary of the photographs but rather are hoping that the images and text will help us understand who you are as a director. These images should be clearly labeled and included in a single PDF.

For Playwrights: a full-length play.

Application requirements may vary year to year. Full application details will be sent to all candidates whom we wish to invite to a second round.

Can my recommenders send their letters directly to NYTW?

Letters of recommendation will only be requested of those who have been invited to submit a full application. Your recommenders may send their letters by email directly to fellowshipinfo@nytw.org as an attachment or in the body of the message. Alternately, you may submit a scanned PDF of a signed letter on letterhead as an attachment. If we are missing a letter of recommendation, your application will be considered incomplete, so please make sure your recommenders submit your materials before the deadline. Recommendation letters will not be considered if they are sent prior to a candidate being invited to submit a full application.

What happens if I'm invited to interview?

Candidates will be contacted by early February to schedule an initial interview. If necessary, this first round interview can be completed via phone or video chat. Candidates still in consideration will be contacted to schedule a second interview in early March. If invited to a second interview, candidates must be available for an in-person meeting at NYTW.

When is the Fellowship retreat?

Retreats typically take place over a three-day weekend in June, Friday through Sunday. Specific dates will be sent out with fellowship offers. If invited to interview, please inform us of any known conflicts during the month of June.

How frequently do 2050 Fellowship meetings occur?

Cohort meetings occur once per month and are scheduled prior to the start of the fellowship year. Each fellow shares works-in-progress twice during the fellowship, and all fellows are expected to be present at the work-in-progress showings of their peers.

How much are 2050 Fellowship stipends?

At present, 2050 Fellows are awarded a $3,000 stipend and a $1,500 artistic development fund to use in consultation with the Artistic staff.

Further questions?

Inquiries should be sent to fellowshipinfo@nytw.org.