Musical company

Ensemble Theater Company accepts nominations for 5th Annual Young Playwright Festival

Ensemble Theater Company, Santa Barbara’s professional theater, is now accepting applications for its 5th annual Young Playwright Festival for aspiring writers ages 14-19. This four-month program provides young writers with a safe and stimulating environment in which to learn the art of dramatic writing.

As part of the process, participants develop a 10-minute play which is then presented with professional directors and actors for an audience. This free program accepts up to 10 students from Santa Barbara County. The deadline to apply is January 29, 2022. Applications can be viewed online at

Students of the Young Playwright Festival program will receive multiple and varied opportunities to develop their creativity and acquire artistic skills. The first phase includes weekly classroom instruction focused on the study of dramatic writing techniques, a brief history of American theater, and a lively forum for discussion and critique of student work. At the end of this first phase, students will have completed a rough draft of a 10-minute piece. Phase Two offers one-on-one mentorship from a professional playwright to help students engage in the review process. Phase three gives students the opportunity to participate in a live casting session with professional actors, develop a creative collaboration with a director and experienced actors to produce a staged reading live in front of an audience, as well as than participating in an on-stage conference -back session with members of the public.

This year’s festival is made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts which supports projects for young people from infancy to 24 years old that take place outside of school time, in arts venues and community settings as well. only on school sites. This program encourages relevant, vibrant and innovative community development and learning through youth-focused arts and culture projects.

“As the country and the arts sector begin to envision a return to a post-pandemic world, the National Endowment for the Arts is proud to announce funding that will help arts organizations such as the Ensemble Theater Company re-engage. fully with their partners and audiences, ”NEA said. Interim President Ann Eilers. “Although the arts have supported many during the pandemic, the chance to come together and share artistic experiences is its own necessity and pleasure.”

“It’s a great honor for us,” says Jonathan Fox, artistic director of ETC. “We are proud to be a new recipient of an NEA grant.” “Developing storytellers for the future of American theater may be one of the most valuable educational programs the ETC can offer to the Santa Barbara community,” said Brian McDonald, Director of Education. “Thanks to the generous support of the NEA, we are able to offer this unique drama writing program free of charge to all participating students and provide a support team of nearly 30 theater professionals. “