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The Apothetae and The Lark Announce 2nd Round of Fellowship for a Disabled Playwright

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In a sunny studio with red curtains visible in the background, artists sit in rows of audience chairs smiling and looking off camera. Tim J. Lord sits center and applauds.
Tim J. Lord (center), inaugural Apothetae and Lark Playwriting Fellow, at the National Convening for Disabled Artists in 2017.

New York, NYThe Apothetae, a theater company committed to challenging perceptions of the “Disabled Experience,” and The Lark, a play development lab devoted to playwrights, to the principles of equity and the power of an individual artistic voice, are pleased to announce the opening of submissions for the second round of The Apothetae and Lark Playwriting Fellowship, made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts, Ford Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, and Jeffrey Steinman and Jody Falco. 

We are thrilled to be opening applications again this year, especially as 2020 marks the 30th anniversary of the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This fellowship, the only one of its kind, is dedicated to uplifting the multiplicity of voices and experiences of Deaf/Disabled communities. The program provides a two-year residency for a Deaf/Disabled writer, a cash award of $40,000, a $5,000 Opportunity Fund for project-related expenses, and control over a $10,000 Production Enhancement Fund, to be allocated to a producing theater in support of a full production of one of the Fellow’s plays. Additionally, up to two Finalists will each receive a $5,000 honorarium. Applications will be accepted from March 31 to June 14, 2020, and the 2020 Fellowship period will run from September 15,2020 to September 14, 2022.

The partnership between The Apothetae and The Lark began in earnest in May 2015, when the organizations collaborated on the First National Convening of Deaf/Disabled Artists, during which, three major, field-wide needs were expressed: more creative content featuring people with disabilities, more opportunities for people with disabilities, which are perpetuated by the creation of more content, and more conversations as a community. 

“One of the things I was not prepared for was, because of the exposure that came with the fellowship, were all the people from the community who reached out to me in various ways,” said inaugural Fellow Tim J. Lord. “There’s a real excitement that this helped generate. The fellowship has been a way to help create that community that maybe some of us have felt is lacking.

The Fellowship is the centerpiece of the broader Apothetae and Lark Initiative that was borne out of that Convening, designed to provide an unprecedented platform of support and advocacy for Deaf/Disabled artists. It is the goal of the collaboration to promote the generation of new plays with the power to revolutionize the cultural conversation surrounding disability, and thereby address the profound underrepresentation and oppressive misrepresentation of people with disabilities that persists throughout our cultural media. 

“Plays can start a conversation, create opportunity, generate community, and be a catalyst for progress,” said Gregg Mozgala, Founder and Artistic Director of The Apothetae. “This is why developing writers from within the Disability community is so important. We need more voices, and we need to practice using them. We need our stories told.”

The Apothetae and Lark Playwriting Fellowship is a critical component in The Lark’s acclaimed portfolio of fellowships, designed to engage a diverse community of extraordinary playwrights—at various places in their careers—who represent, collectively, a contemporary national vision. 

Applications will be accepted from March 31 to June 14, 2020.

LEARN MORE & APPLY >


For questions about submissions, please email apothetae@larktheatre.org. If you have accessibility questions about the application process, please contact Operations Manager Kendra Ann Flournoy at kendra@larktheatre.org

This round of the Fellowship and the wider Apothetae and Lark Initiative is made possible by a partnership between the Ford Foundation and the Howard Gilman Foundation, alongside the generous support of The National Endowment for the Art’s Arts Work program, which supports projects that focus on public engagement, access to art for communities across the nation, the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, learning in the arts at all stage of life, and the integration of the arts into the fabric of community life. Additional financial and advocacy support for the fellowship comes from Jeffrey Steinman and Jody Falco.

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