SheNYC is the city’s premier festival showcasing the new, original works of women writers, composers, & directors.
Script submissions to the 2022 Festival are now CLOSED as of 11/15/21.
The SheNYC Summer Theater Festival
The city’s premiere festival showcasing the new, original works of women writers, composers, & directors
Script submissions to the 2022 Festival now open through November 15th, 2021! Read on below to learn more.
That’s a wrap!
In 2020, the SheNYC Summer Theater Festival was quick to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic by moving all our programming online, one of the only companies in the country to not cancel a single performance during the shutdown.
In 2021, all of our writers returned to produce their shows again, this time onstage and in-person! Our last performance was on August 18th, 2021. We’re so proud of our cast, crew, and creative team members for putting up one of the first live performances since the pandemic hit.
Script submissions for the 2022 SheNYC Summer Theater Festival were open from September 15th to November 15th, 2021. If you missed the deadline, read on below to learn more about submitting next year!
Not Your Typical Theater Festival.
We empower women writers to self-produce their work, in a safe environment with subsidized costs and mentorship along the way.
The typical theater festival is an opportunity for playwrights to self-produce their work in full onstage, for a paying audience. Festivals have multiple shows which all share resources, making the process far less expensive for everyone than producing your show in full on your own. If you’ve done developmental readings already and feel like you’re ready to take the next step of seeing your piece fully staged, a festival is probably the right fit for you!
There is no participation fee to participate in the SheNYC Summer Theater Festival. Note that everything listed below is subject to change pending the COVID-19 pandemic and our staff and shows’ safety.
The rental of the Connelly Theater in the East Village, a beautiful 99-seat proscenium theatre and all of the equipment that goes inside of it:
- All light and curtain rentals
- Laptop and speaker system for sound cues
- Miscellaneous tech items like gaff tape, common tools, etc
- A 5-hour long tech slot to tech your show
- General Liability Insurance for your time inside the theater (note that this is separate from the insurance required by AEA if you hire AEA actors)
We provide the staff IN the theater to make your tech and performances run smoothly, including:
- A Production Manager and Associate Production Manager to run your tech and call your show
- A lighting designer to design your lights and program the light board during your tech
- A sound technician to make sure your sound cues run smoothly
- 1-2 additional backstage crew members to use in a way that best fits your show
- Full front of house staff – Ushers, Box Office, Concessions, and House Manager
SOME SET PIECES & PROPS
- We provide some limited miscellaneous set pieces that will be shared by all of the shows, exact pieces TBD. In the past, we’ve had tables, chairs, and couches to offer to all of our productions. Our Production Manager will poll the shows in advance of tech to get an idea of what the furniture needs may be.
- We also have a Materials for the Arts (MFTA) membership, which provides free materials for arts nonprofits. We’ll set up a group visit to their warehouse in Queens so you can get free set, props, and costume items.
- An upright piano in the space.
MARKETING & ADVERTISING
- We have a marketing campaign advertising the festival as a whole with social media ads, Google Ads, and various ads on other digital outlets that theatergoers frequent.
A SHOW MENTOR
- Unique to SheNYC, we provide a Mentor to each show. This is a member of our Festival staff who is there to guide you through the festival process, offer advice, and be an extra set of hands to help out as needed.
Some other tools and items we provide are:
- We pay for your first $200 in rehearsal studio space
- Playbill for all shows
- A closing night party with awards determined by a panel of industry judges
- Full ticketing system managed by SheNYC Box Office staff
- Casting session to kick off your casting search (COVID permitting)
- Production photography & videography
- Our Tip The Writers program allows patrons to leave you a tip, which we pay out to you at the end of the Festival
- A life-long community of artists who will support all of your work in the future!
CAST AND CREATIVE TEAM
You can choose to work with Union or non-Union artists.
- If you do hire AEA actors, you will need to manage your contract or code with them, pay them the amounts dictated by your contract with AEA, and provide the insurance required by AEA (your show mentor can help explain!)
Any other creative team members (except a lighting designer, which SheNYC provides) that you think you need to build the world of your show. Just note that with limited tech and load-in time, we recommend you keep it simple!
- Any additional set, costumes, and props that aren’t covered by our shared pieces or MFTA warehouse.
- If your show requires a band, you/your musicians should bring their own instruments beyond a piano.
REHEARSAL STUDIO SPACE
You handle the entire rehearsal process before you get into the SheNYC Theater. Booking rehearsal studios tends to be the biggest expense in your budget, so we have some partnerships with local studios to get you discounts on those costs.
*New to 2022: Due to a generous grant, we’re able to cover the first $200 toward rehearsal studios!*
“ELBOW GREASE” MARKETING
While we manage paid ads for the festival, we need your help to spread the word about your show to your networks! You likely won’t need or want to put money into this — just some old-fashioned effort of starting an Instagram for your show, emailing your network to let them know about your performances, and otherwise spreading the word to family & friends.
September 15, 2021: Script submissions open. You’ll be able to submit your application and script any time between then and November 15 at 11:59pm PST.
February 2022: We will notify you if you’re a finalist for the Festival.
April 2022: We notify all shows of their acceptance to the festival. (We will also let you know if you’re not accepted, though that may come later in the month.) You then accept your slot.
May: All the fun stuff starts! We’ll have a meet and greet, info session, and group audition session. The Festival organizes it and gets people signed up for auditions, and any shows are welcome to come cast. That’s just a courtesy to help you get started — if you want to hold additional auditions or callbacks, that’s up to you and your creative team to organize so you can best account for your show’s specific needs.
June: Start rehearsals for your show! This is the part where you and your creative team take over. Our staff will be checking in about your progress, answer any questions, and to help market your show. NOTE that you will only have 4.5 hours to tech your show, and 15-30 minutes to load-in and load out, so we recommend you keep it simple when it comes to tech elements.
July/August: The 2022 SheNYC Festival will run in July/August at the Connelly Theater — exact dates TBD.
Each show will get a 5-hour tech and dress rehearsal, followed by 2 performances within those two weeks. We will also leave a few empty performance slots in the schedule so that any show that sells out its first two performances can add extra performances.
Ready to apply?
Archive: Learn more about the 2021 SheNYC Shows
PRIDE & PREJUDICE
A Musical Adaptation by Sam Caps & Annie Dillon
It’s the classic story so many know and love — five sisters navigate courtship in a socially restrictive Regency world. Lizzy hates Mr. Darcy at first, but learns that she can’t always trust first impressions. Jane and Bingley fall in love, fall apart, and fall back together. Chaos ensues, but love triumphs in the end — for some.
Friday, July 30th at 7:30pm – SOLD OUT!
Tuesday, August 3rd at 7:30pm
Digital Premiere: 8/10 @ 7:30pm
Sam Caps (writer) graduated from NYU Steinhardt in 2019 with a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance. Since she started writing pop songs 3 years ago, she has experimented with a variety of styles, including musical theater, jazz and folk. Adapting her favorite classic novel into a pop/contemporary score has been exhilarating, and she and Annie recently wrote a second musical in quarantine about Emily Dickinson. Thanks so much to SheNYC for this awesome opportunity!
Annie Dillon (writer) is a NYC based theatre artist and NYU graduate hailing from the Boston area. She has written two musicals in collaboration with Sam, and is excited to be presenting one in its full form for the first time! Annie also recently directed Crucible, PA with From Scratch Productions. Performing highlights include regional productions of Titanic, Far Away, Into the Woods, Evita, and Les Misérables. Thanks to SheNYC for this opportunity! Instagram: @anniexmegan
By Victoria Fragnito
Directed by Jenn Susi
Time does not heal all wounds. Best friends Jessica and Sam each have scars from their pasts that have not healed. Jessica has never been able to get past an extremely damaging romantic relationship from her formative years in college, while Sam has been ignoring a painfully fractured relationship with her sister. After years of denial, an impromptu lunch date and a surprise overnight guest forces them both to confront these wounds and face what they didn’t want to see head on.
Content Warning: This play deals with themes of emotional and physical abuse, as well as rape.
Wednesday, August 4th at 7:30pm
Digital Performance: August 18th at 7:30pm
Victoria M. Fragnito (playwright) is an actor/director turned playwright who’s thrilled to be a part of SheNYC’s Summer Festival! She holds a B.A. in theatre from DeSales University. Her debut play, Scar Tissue, was workshopped at Dixon Place with their “Works in Progress” series and selected for the historic Old Joint Stock Theatre’s “Open Doors” program in the U.K. Her other works have been developed with The Bechdel Group and The Tank NYC.
Jenn Susi (director) is an NYC Director and Theatre Educator born and raised in the Bronx! Jenn has been directing and developing work all over NYC including Theatre 54, 13th Street Repertory Theatre, Stay True, an LGBTQ+ Theatre Company, and Nuyorican Poets Cafe where she was a “Best of Fest” winner. Member of Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab and Artist -In- Residence at Abingdon Theatre Company. www.jennsusi.com
By Lou Clyde
Directed by Jessica Francis Fichter
What happens when you mix hairspray, headlice and a little dab of Elvis? Hairlarity. The year is 1958 and Betty finds herself unfulfilled as a housewife. She and her husband have been unsuccessful in starting a family and her husband will not “permit” her to get a job. With the encouragement of her sister, Betty secretly sets up an in-home salon, leveraging her prowess with hairspray and bobby pins. Betty begins to change the lives of neighborhood women by “poufing” their hair. Pouf! is an “uplifting” comedy with big hair and even bigger laughs.
In-Person Performance: Thursday, July 29th at 7:30pm
Digital Performance: 8/13 @ 7:30pm
Lou Clyde (playwright) is a Buffalo transplant living in Columbia, South Carolina. Pouf! is Lou’s fourth full-length comedy. Her humor has been influenced by the works of Erma Bombeck, David Sedaris, and Dave Barry, and she is obsessed with Shitt’s Creek. Thanks to her friends/family and her fellow poufers for their love and support. www.louclyde.com
Jessica Francis Fichter (Director) is a New York/South Carolina based director, playwright, and teaching artist. She is the founder of the Evolving Door Theatre Company. She holds a MFA in directing from the Actors Studio Drama School, a B.A. in theatre education from Winthrop University, and a M.Ed in Divergent Learning from Columbia College.
By Abaigeal O’Donnell
Directed by Julia Atkin
Donating eggs is not always what it’s cracked up to be.
Sperm donation can happen with a magazine and a cup, but for people attempting to donate their eggs, things are not so easy. Through awkward moments, hormonal daydreams, dance parties, and the not-fun-kind-of-shots, over easy follows four egg donors from recruitment to extraction.
In-Person Performance: Saturday, July 31st at 7:30pm
NEW Digital Performance: Saturday, August 14th at 7:30pm
Abaigeal (Abbie) O’Donnell (Playwright) is a Chicago-based playwright, teaching artist, director, and dramaturg. She is currently an MA Applied Theatre student at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London. Her play over easy has been developed with NoMads Art Collective, Theatre of the Beyond, Theatre Aspen, and Montclair State University. She received her BFA in Theatre Arts with a concentration in Theatre for Young Audiences from The Theatre School at DePaul University.
Julia Atkin (Director) is a Chicago-based actor and director. Directing: Strawdog Theatre Co., Arranmore Arts, The Arc Theater, Delivery (short film). Acting: Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Strawdog Theatre Co., Prop Thtr, The Arc Theatre. Film/TV: neXt, Chicago Med, Bug Bites (short). Proudly represented by Stewart Talent Chicago. http://www.juliaatkin.com.
By Allison Svagdis
A young woman struggles to find her happy ending when trouble from her past keeps resurfacing. After a traumatic sexual assault experience as a teen, Girl tries to move forward but college, boys and herself get in the way of coping.
Content Warning: Sexual Assault, Suicide
The August 5th in-person performance and the August 20th digital performance of INTENTIONS have been cancelled. If you had tickets, you should receive an email about refunds. We apologize for any inconvenience!
In-person Performance: 8/5 @ 7:30pm
Digital Performance: 8/20 @ 7:30pm
Allison Svagdis (she/her) is a New York City based playwright and actress, who holds a BFA in Acting from Point Park University. Past credits include The Scarlett Letter, Vinegar Tom and Horse Girls, and various cheeky zoom performances. She’s very happy to be back in the theatre, doing what she loves most- storytelling. allisonsvagdis.com
Samantha Toy Ozeas (she/her) is currently studying directing at Carnegie Mellon School of Drama with a minor in Gender Studies. Much of her recent original work (Major Minor, r/TheRedPill, Park Song) has been staged in unconventional performance spaces— parking lots, backyards, parks. Other interests include beekeeping, watercolors, flower arranging, and walking too fast.
girl power sex positive joy ride
By Zoe Kamil
Directed by Sarah Shin
Best friends Mary and Karla are teachers at the same middle class suburban high school they attended together. When straight-laced, insecure Karla sends a tasteful nude that ends up in the wrong hands, old dynamics are called into question and a pair of teens have some very grown-up decisions to make.
Wednesday, July 28th at 7:30pm
Saturday, August 7th at 7:30pm
Digital Performance: 8/12 @ 7:30pm
By Larissa Kruesi
Directed by Florence Zebas
Beth is creative, Eva is super smart, and both are deeply frustrated at their corporate jobs. Determined to put their untapped talents to work, they create a Kickstarter to launch their own company, where they can make the rules. But as the company quickly grows, they find their definitions of success and friendship constantly put to the test in ways they never expected.
Friday, August 6th at 7:30pm
Note that StartUp will not have a digital performance.
Larissa Kruesi (Playwright) Previous works include: The PERFECT Wedding (SPF 2019), What Would Tina and Amy Do? (The PIT 2017, DC Capital Fringe Festival 2014) and the short film 8 Million is the Loneliest Number (which screened in NYC, Philadelphia, and Winchester, VA in 2019). Education: BA in Theatre and English from The College of William and Mary, Guildhall School of Music and Drama Summer Session, ESPA at Primary Stages, The New Group, and The PIT.
Florence Lebas (Director) is a New Zealand born Brooklyn-based Theatre Director, Costume Designer, and Arts Administrator. She has a passion for new plays and is interested in character driven stories that are courageous, intimate, and joyful, with a touch of magic. Florence has developed new work with The Flea, The Tank, The Wild Project, Exquisite Corpse Company, Dixon Place, The Arctic Group, IRT Theatre, The Bushwick Starr, En Garde Arts, and The Public Theater. Florence has a degree in Theatre from Whitman College. She is currently the Associate Program Manager for the SAG-AFTRA Foundation.
A Brand-New Full-Length Play by Charlotte Ahlin
It’s an ordinary night in for roommates Cosmo, Casey, Roz, and Filomena. They bicker over chores, surf Netflix, and fend off the medieval Plague Doctor who haunts the corners of their apartment. But tonight, they’ve found a new way to relieve the monotony: a storytelling contest with perilous stakes. As they spin their tales, genres weave together and fictional worlds spring to life—and the good Doctor wants in.
This piece is a very, almost irresponsibly loose retelling of The Decameron, a 14th Century series of novellas about a bunch of twenty-somethings swapping stories while quarantined in the Italian countryside. They, too, are waiting out a plague. In this version, of course, the stories are updated. The characters are less concerned with the foibles of the clergy than they are with their own stagnant careers and social lives and the dismal state of the world. But the spirit remains the same: storytelling is humanity’s refuge in dangerous times, and bird masks are properly creepy.
In-Person Performance: Sunday, August 1st at 7:30pm
Digital Performance: 8/19 @ 7:30pm
Charlotte Ahlin (Playwright) is a writer, playwright, and lifelong New Yorker. Her past work includes The Summoning (Best Production, SheNYC 2017), Dido, Queen of Carthage (published with Red Bull Theater), and Roll With It (now streaming on The Fantasy Network!). Her plays have been produced at venues of varying prestige all around NYC. She holds a B.A. in creative writing from Oberlin College and serves as associate artistic director of Fat Knight Theatre, a founding member of the playwright group Page Break (in residence with Soho Playhouse), and a reptilian co-overlord of the geeky arts collective Lizardfolk. www.charlotteahlin.com