2017-2018 National Fund for New Musicals Grants Announced

We are thrilled to announce 16 awards granted from their National Fund for New Musicals, a major funding program to support NAMT member not-for-profit theatres in their collaborations with writers to create, develop and produce new musicals. Now in its ninth year, the Fund will provide grants totaling $53,000 to organizations across the country.

NAMT Executive Director Betsy King Militello stated: “We are honored and excited to support our member theatres as they work with this inspiring group of writers to develop these innovative and provocative new musicals.  With these grants, we have now awarded 104 grants totaling $411,500. These projects will join a growing list of important new musicals added to the canon with support from our National Fund for New Musicals.”

National Fund grants of $5,000 to $8,000 to support full productions have been awarded to:

Ars Nova (New York, NY) for The Lucky Ones by Abigail Nessen Bengson, Shaun Bengson and Sarah Gancher with funding from The Hollywood Pantages, a Nederlander organization. The Lucky Ones also received a Writers Residency Grant from the National Fund.
Diversionary Theatre Productions (San Diego, CA) for The Loneliest Girl in the World by Julia Meinwald and Gordon Leary. The Loneliest Girl in the World was featured in the 2016 NAMT Festival of New Musicals.
Goodspeed Musicals (East Haddam, CT) for Darling Grenadine by Daniel Zaitchik with funding from The Hollywood Pantages, a Nederlander organization.
Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma (Oklahoma City, OK) for When We’re Gone (fka Mortality Play) by Scotty Arnold and Alana Jacoby with funding from The ASCAP Foundation Irving Caesar Fund. When We’re Gone was featured in the 2016 NAMT Festival.
TheatreWorks Silicon Valley (Palo Alto, CA) for The Four Immigrants: An American Musical Manga by Min Kahng. The Four Immigrants previously received a Writers Residency Grant from the National Fund.

National Fund grants of $2,000 to $5,000 to support a workshop or reading have been awarded to:

Atlantic Theater Company (New York, NY) for This Ain’t No Disco by Stephen Trask, Peter Yanowitz and Rick Elice.
Chicago Shakespeare Theater (Chicago, IL) for Bedknobs & Broomsticks by Neil Bartram and Brian Hill, based upon the Walt Disney animated film. Bartram and Hill are NAMT Festival Alumni for The Story of My Life (Fest ’07).
The Lark (New York, NY) for Sweethearts of Swing by Natalie Wilson and Kat Sherrell with funding from The Alhadeff Charitable Foundation.
Transport Group Theatre Company (New York, NY) for The Untitled Millay Project by Dick Scanlan and Carmel Dean. Scanlan is a NAMT Festival Alumnus for Thoroughly Modern Millie (Fest ’96).

This is the ninth year of grants awarded from the National Fund of New Musicals, a fund created by NAMT to help support every stage of development for new musicals. The recipients were selected by a distinguished panel, moderated by Gigi Bolt, the former Director of Theater and Musical Theater at the National Endowment for the Arts. The panelists were Christopher Burney, Associate Artistic Director of Second Stage Theatre; Lily Fan, theatre and documentary film producer; Kent Gash, founding Director of NYU Tisch School of the Arts’ New Studio on Broadway and NAMT Board Member; Lesley Koenig, Managing Director of Weston Playhouse Theatre Company; Kent Nicholson, Director of Musical Theatre for Playwrights Horizons; Jill Rafson, Director of New Play Development for Roundabout Theatre Company; and Schele Williams, freelance director committed to cultivating new musicals.

Additionally, the National Fund for New Musicals has awarded each of the following member organizations $500 to $1,000 for Writers Residency Grants over the past year:

The 5th Avenue Theatre for Intermission! by Jerry Zucker, Michael Weiner and Alan Zachary. Weiner and Zachary are both Festival Alumni from The Mystery of the Dancing Princesses (Fest ’01); Weiner is also an alumnus for his show Liberty Smith (Fest ’00).

The American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University for Michael Collins by Ryan Cunningham and Joshua Salzman. Both are Festival Alumni for their show I Love You Because (Fest ’05).

Ars Nova for The Lucky Ones by Abigail Nessen Bengson, Shaun Bengson and Sarah Gancher.

Artpark and Company for Elephant in the Room by Jean Marie Keevins and Sahr Ngaujah.

Diversionary Theatre Productions for Run Away Home by Charlie Sohne and Tim Rosser. Both are Festival Alumni for The Boy Who Danced on Air (Fest ’13).

New York Theatre Barn for Eastbound by Cheeyang Ng and Khiyon Hursey.

Village Theatre for an untitled project by Justin Huertas, Kirsten deLohr Helland and Sara Porkalob.

The National Fund for New Musicals has supported the development of many musicals over the last nine years, including The Band’s Visit by David Yazbek and Itamar Moses at Atlantic Theater Company; Bella: An American Tall Tale by Kirsten Childs at Playwrights Horizons and Dallas Theater Center; Giant by Michael John LaChiusa and Sybille Pearson at Dallas Theater Center; Ordinary Days (NAMT Fest ’08) by Adam Gwon at Adirondack Theatre Festival, which is now licensed through Rodgers & Hammerstein; Far From Heaven by Michael Korie, Scott Frankel and Richard Greenberg at Playwrights Horizons; The Memory Show (NAMT Fest ’09) by Sara Cooper and Zach Redler at Transport Group; The Circus in Winter (NAMT Fest ’12) by Ben Clark, Hunter Foster and Beth Turcotte at Goodspeed Musicals; and Southern Comfort (NAMT Fest ’12) at all three grant levels, at Playwrights Horizons, CAP21 and Barrington Stage Company; among many others.

NAMT thanks the following foundations, government agencies and organizations for their ongoing support of our programs: The Alhadeff Charitable Foundation, The Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York Creative Spaces Grant, ASCAP Foundation Irving Caesar Fund, BMI Foundation, The Dramatists Guild Fund, The Dubose and Dorothy Heyward Memorial Fund, Friars Foundation, The Hollywood Pantages, a Nederlander organization, National Endowment for the Arts, The Noël Coward Foundation, The Rodgers and Hammerstein Foundation, The Shubert Foundation and an anonymous donor.


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