June - September 2020

Deaf Playwrights Convening

Four months of sharing, ideating, planning, and networking with playwrights and theatremakers.
Where: Online via video sessions & interactive messaging platforms.
Honorarium: $250 for your time and expertise to support the convening’s activities which include developing short plays and building a national play production pipeline.
Deadline: May 31, 2020, please apply as soon as possible. Participants will be selected from screened applicants

About The Program

The NTD Deaf Playwrights Convening is a four-month planning and creative work collaborative space for the creation and development of new original short plays (up to 10 minutes) written by Deaf playwrights. Also, the participants will help develop and implement a sustainable pipeline for developing new plays (short plays, 1 acts, and full length plays) so content is being created as a yearly basis. This convening is not the same as, but is in the spirit of previous National Deaf Playwrights conferences hosted by the NTD.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and out of concern for everybody’s safety and health, the NTD Deaf Playwrights Convening will be held online, with a series of sessions from June to September 2020. The Convening duration will be 20 hours in total, breaking down to about five (5) hours monthly. You will have an opportunity to contribute and work as cohorts.

This Convening is a continuation of the work that began at Howlround’s Deaf Theatre Planning Action Session (DTAPS) in Boston, on March 15-17, 2019. We expect the Convening will be attended by theatre artists, theatre arts administrators, and other theatremakers from across the U.S. to go in-depth on the creative act of playwriting and play production. Space at the Convening is limited to 20 participants; invitees will be selected from among a pool of applicants of diverse strengths and backgrounds.

The main goal of this Convening is the continued pursuit of the common mission and goals identified in connection with the question raised at DTAPS: “What if Deaf theatre artists came together with the will to stop waiting for others to mobilize us or accept us, and started creating the conditions for us to self-produce, promote, create, and advance?” One goal would be to identify and gain a better understanding of current capacity and assets for producing deaf plays across the U.S. Another goal would be to create and share report-outs on a select range of topics with individuals and organizations outside the Convening.

This convening is focused mostly on asset identification and capacity building for a national new play production pipeline and how we are able to support one another in this effort both as individuals and as organizations. NTD aims to foster and cultivate a national environment where playwrights feel they are able to generate and contribute new work, and when they feel safe enough that their work will be produced and seen.

The NTD Playwrights Convening is supported by the Beatrice Auerbach Fox Fund at the Hartford Foundation and the State of Connecticut, Department of Economic and Community Development, Office of the Arts.

The application deadline has been extended to May 31, 2020. Please consider applying to be a part of the NTD’s legacy.

Questions, please email Patty Liang at patty@ntd.org.

We invite you to apply to carry on the work and legacy of theatre artists, playwrights, theatre administrators and engaged supporters that began in Boston last year.

Please get started! Apply today. Thank you!

Targeted Topic Coverage May Include

  • Retooling and advancing original plans of action developed at DTAPS in March 2019
  • Capacity building for a national-level deaf play production pipeline
  • Identification and implementation of new goals, directions, strategies, and tactics
  • Asset identification and mapping
  • Cross-theatre strategic planning and coalition building
  • Development of multi-theatre resource sharing concept
  • Data collection and preservation efforts
  • Networking and building relationships
  • Creating and evolving new narratives
  • Increasing shared knowledge through conversation and work sessions
  • Opportunity for creative sharing of works in development
  • Facilitated high-level learning or training sessions
  • Evolving Deaf theatre aesthetics and means of production
  • Developing our shared identity and voice across the spectrum
  • Cross-pollinating ideas of all sorts and types
  • And more…

* A more specific agenda will be released via email to convening registrants and those who indicate interest in registering.

Share This Opportunity!

Goal #1: Network and Share

Interact with your fellow artists and advocates. Learn who’s doing what, and forge connections that will last well into the future.

Goal #2: Assess the Landscape

Identify and gain a better understanding of current capacity and assets for producing deaf plays across the U.S.

Goal #3: Plan for the Future

Put heads together and come up with an action plan with clear goals and milestones to foster new play development.

Goal #4: Report Out

Share findings on a select range of topics to share with interested individuals and organizations outside of the Convening.


The application deadline has passed and registration is closed.

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National Theatre of the Deaf
Elstad Annex
800 Florida Ave. NE
Washington, DC 20002

E: info@ntd.org