Directing Fellowships, Apprenticeships & Observerships

ISPA's Fellowship Program was created to provide emerging and mid-career performing arts professionals with the opportunity to expand their international networks through membership and attendance at an ISPA Congress. The Fellows represent all disciplines, genres, and types of arts organizations.

The Drama League Fellowships, part of an umbrella of programs collectively known as "The Directors Project," are intended for directors to advance their careers, hone their artistry, and elevate their work to the next level of their professional development. Each Fellowship has a clearly-defined area of focus that offers industry-leading opportunities for training, network development, mentorship, production experience, and creative growth. These Fellowships vary in both area of specialization and in intended participant: some are intended for early-career directors, and some are intended for mid-career directors.

- Classical Fellowship For Directors Of Color

- Directing Fellowship in Film & Television

- Hangar Directing Fellowship

- The Leo Shull New Musicals Fellowship

- New York Directing Fellowship

- Public Works Directing Fellowship

The 2050 Fellowship is a yearlong residency for emerging playwrights and directors. The 2050 Fellowship provides a space for experimentation, artistic and administrative support, and mentorship. The 2050 Fellows are emerging artists who, with their unique voices, give us perspective on the world in which we live; and who challenge us all to contend with this changing world.

The program is 18 months of hands-on, practical experience. It connects early-career directors to a vast network of new writers, expands access to professional support services, and provides laboratory-like environments for observation and experimentation, equipping tomorrow’s stage directors with the skills, knowledge, and network to advance new play development and production around the country.

The founding principle of The Julie Taymor World Theater Fellowship is to provide travel opportunities for enterprising young theater directors to immerse themselves in artistic experiences beyond our borders; thereby, expanding their creative horizons to include previously undiscovered styles and techniques which can best be experienced in direct dialogue and work with creative artists from other cultures.  It is our hope that through travel to and dialogue with world theater artists, American fellowship recipients will increase their creative capacity and return to enliven the American theater with new productions fueled by their expanded perspective of world theater in Africa, Central and South America, Asia, and/or the Middle East.  

The Directing Fellow acts as an assistant to the director on three Playwrights Horizons productions — often assisting with research and attending  production meetings, design meetings, all rehearsals and preview performances through Opening Night. Specific duties vary depending on the nature of the show and the needs of the director. Two full-time seasonal fellowships are offered: the Directing Fellows rotate shows, each working on two Mainstage productions and one Sharp Theater production. Please note that successful applicants for this fellowship have graduated from college and spent at least one to two years pursuing work as a director in New York.

A 10-month paid fellowship  for a female identifying director with at least five years of post-undergraduate directing experience. CPH seeks to fill this fellowship with a female director because of our belief that women are underrepresented in leadership positions at professional regional theatres, and as part of CPH’s ongoing efforts to work toward a more equitable, inclusive, and diverse community.

The Artistic Apprentice will report to the Artistic Director and the Associate Artistic Director. Apprentice will assist with dramaturgy for the season as well as supporting resident and guest directors in the rehearsal space. Additionally, the artistic apprentice will facilitate local auditions for each production. The apprentice will also assist with Theatre+ programming, audience engagement events, study guides, and projects as assigned. Ideal candidates have experience in dramaturgy and/or directing, a commitment to collaboration and the creative process, and an insightful, positive energy that fuses seamlessly with Triad Stage core values. There is a seasonal stipend and shared housing available.

The Artistic & Casting Apprentice works with the Associate Artistic Director/Casting Director and visiting directors to help cast each Mainstage production as well as with the AAD/CD and Senior Associate Artistic Director/Director of National Players to cast the National Players Tour three-show repertory season. The individual schedules and attends all local auditions and also works with the artistic team to prepare for out-of-town auditions. The apprentice maintains casting files while assisting the Company Manager with actor contracts and guest artist logistics.

The Observership Program provides early to mid-career directors and choreographers paid opportunities to observe the work of master directors and choreographers as they create productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway and at leading regional theatres across the country. SDCF Observers may have access to the entire rehearsal process from first rehearsal through opening night.  Observers will have the invaluable opportunity to observe first-hand the techniques, disciplines, approaches and insights of master artists as they create new productions and revive classics.  In addition to Observership opportunities provided through SDCF, members of the Observership class are also eligible to apply for the Kurt Weill Fellowship and the Shepard and Mildred Traube Fellowship.

SDCF awards a number of Fellowships for early-career, mid-career, and established artists throughout the year.

Directing Apprentices will observe some of the finest directors in the country while assisting on mainstage shows, including for the Humana Festival of New American Plays. Apprentices are also guaranteed several directing opportunities within the Professional Training Company season. Note that this apprenticeship is equal parts observation and directing.

The Alan Schneider Director Award was established in honor of Alan Schneider's significant contribution to the American theatre and his lifelong concern for the development of career opportunities for freelance directors. The award is designed to identify and assist exceptional directors whose talent has been demonstrated through work in specific regions, but who may not be well known nationally. The recipient receives $7,500 which may be used for travel, research or other activities specifically focused on the development of the directing craft or related career opportunities.

Involvement in special projects and additional programming varies in each department. As CTC is a small but substantial operation, Fellows are also expected to provide additional skilled labor as needed within their departments. Fellows work under the supervision of both the artistic director and the production manager.

Primary duties include assisting the directors with all day-to-day rehearsal and performance responsibilities. Other projects include partnering with Stage Management to facilitate understudy rehearsals and collaborating with other departments on the creation and execution of public discussion events for productions.

Directing Fellow – serves as the Directing Assistant on several Arena Stage productions (LORT B+), and is expected to support the director at every rehearsal, production meeting, and during tech, and previews. This work may include taking notes, providing research, and ensuring the well-being of the director. This position requires a flexible schedule for evening and weekend hours while in productions. In addition, this Fellow supports the Deputy Artistic Director, Casting Director and Literary Associate on other Artistic Development Department initiatives and activities when not working on a production.

Hawaii Performing Arts Festival’s Directing Fellowship Program will award Fellowships to two outstanding young directors who are aiming for careers in the opera and/or musical theatre directing field. Fellows will work closely with our directing faculty and receive regular one on one sessions. Each fellow will be assigned to one of our three MainStage productions, working under the guidance of our world-renowned stage directors. Fellows will also have the opportunity to work one on one with the festival’s singers during dramatic coachings. Additional artistic assignments may be assigned at the discretion of the festival’s artistic staff, based on each fellow’s experience.

The Fellowship will focus on Shakespeare’s text, how it is put together, and how it works in the imaginations and voices of American actors. In master classes, Edelstein will present a series of techniques that the Directing Fellows will then employ in rehearsals with a company of professional actors. The work will culminate in a private presentation on Saturday. After that, all involved will debrief and broaden the conversation to some larger questions about Shakespeare, American culture, and the director’s art and life. Throughout the week, in addition to the artistic work, Directing Fellows will meet with members of the Globe’s staff in many departments, and with representatives of the San Diego theatre community beyond the Globe.

The Directing Fellow reports to the Artistic Director, Associate Artistic Director and other production directors, and acts as assistant to the director for mainstage productions. Responsibilities include attending production meetings, rehearsals, taking notes, doing dramaturgical research, and supporting the work of the director. WCP utilizes rehearsal space in Westport and New York City, and the Directing Fellow will be asked to commute from NYC to Westport, CT frequently—for rehearsals, technical rehearsals, previews, performances and errands. Transportation will be provided. The Directing Fellow will also support the Artistic department in day-to-day operations, including screening script submissions.

Early-Career Directing Fellowship: CT directors Anne Kauffman and Ken Rus Schmoll mentor three early-career directors in a five-month new play directing intensive. Each director is paired with an early/mid-career playwright to develop a new piece with students at Playwrights Horizons Theater School over the course of three months. This is followed by a three-week process with professional actors, stage managers and designers, culminating in Winterworks – a five-day industry showcase of their work.

In an effort to support the development of future Omaha directors, Omaha Community Playhouse is excited to announce the Omaha Community Playhouse Directing Fellowship, providing early and mid-career directors with the opportunity to develop their skills by directing an OCP Alternative Programming production, as well as assisting directing a regular OCP season musical or play.  

The fellowship, which is awarded each fall,  honors an early-career Chicago-based director, providing that artist with a stipend, an opportunity to assist one of the theater's resident directors on a Goodman production, and the chance to become involved in the ongoing artistic life of the Goodman.

Manhattan Theatre Club offers two exciting fellowships to early and mid-career directors: The Samuel J. Friedman Directing Assistantship and The Jonathan Alper Directing Fellowship. Applicants admitted into the program will be put into a pool from which we’ll pull the assistant directors for our upcoming season. Generally Fellows only assist on one production, though it can be a great opportunity to make a relationship with a director. A Fellow generally begins work on the first day of rehearsal (though sometimes slightly before) and will generally work full-time on that show until its opening night—roughly two months from start to finish, though this varies. Fellows’ duties vary widely based on their personal strengths and the director they are paired with, but may include observership, dramaturgy, note-taking, and generally supporting the various people in the rehearsal room. All Fellows are asked to lead talkbacks after select previews.

The Artistic Apprentices will work with the artistic department in fulfilling the artistic mission and vision of the organization. Duties may include: tracking and reading script submissions; conducting research in support of production dramaturgs and directors; assisting with casting; supporting resident and visiting directors during pre-production, the rehearsal period as well as tech and previews; and day-to-day operations, including both administrative and producing tasks. There may be opportunities in assistant directing and dramaturgy. Ideal candidates will have a degree in theatre, experience working in professional theatre and a strong desire to pursue a career in directing, dramaturgy &/or producing. Writing sample must be submitted with resume in order to be considered for the position. The Artistic department hires two apprentices each season. Hartford Stage is dedicated to the goal of building a culturally diverse and equitable environment and strongly encourages applications from minorities and women.

To be listed here a position must be specifically  "Directing" or "Artistic" - with Responsibilities for Directing, Dramaturgy, Casting and/or Assisting an Artistic Director