The Drama League Reveals Recipients of 2024 Directors Project

Learn more about the recipients here!

By: May. 06, 2024
The Drama League Reveals Recipients of 2024 Directors Project
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The Drama League has announced the nineteen stage directors receiving the 2024 fellowships, assistantships, residencies, and fund programs collectively known as The Directors Project. Selected from a record-breaking 1,800 applicants worldwide, the recipients are Zoë Adams, Arin Arbus, Britt Berke, Rosalind Bevan, Desdemona Chiang, Jaime Castaneda, Emma Denson, Stefan Dezil, Morgan Green, Devin E. Haqq, Sarah Hughes, Karl Michael Iglesias, Lauren Keating, Irvin Mason, Jr., Jess McLeod, Martavius Parrish, Danny Sharron, Colm Summers, and Dina Vovsi.

The 2024 Directors Project Cohort will be publicly introduced to the professional theater community during the 90th Annual Drama League Awards on Friday, May 17, 2023 at the Ziegfeld Ballroom in New York City. More information on the Recipients and the Awards can be found at www.dramaleague.org

“As the last remaining nonprofit organization wholly dedicated to developing directors at every level of their careers, we do not take our role lightly,” said Artistic Director Gabriel Stelian-Shanks. “Even still, we were blown away by the overwhelming number of exceptional directors that applied for the Directors Project this year, more than double any previous year. The cohort of directors chosen for these programs offer the world unique, vibrant, complex visions that will entertain and illuminate for decades to come, and we cannot wait to see it come to fruition.”

Zoë Adams (she/her) and Irvin Mason, Jr. (he/him) have received the two-year Drama League Stage Directing Fellowships, which offers each of them a $100,000 award, health insurance reimbursement, training and accelerator workshops, and professional directing experiences with Manhattan Theatre Club, Playwright's Center, Keen Company, Berkeley Rep, New York Stage and Film, and Red Bull Theater. It is the largest directing fellowship of its kind in the world.

Britt Berke (she/her), Stefan Dezil (he/him), and Karl Michael Iglesias (he/him) are recipients of the Drama League FutureNow Directing Fellowships, an immersion program which begins with directing, cabaret and assisting assignments at Chautauqua Theatre Company (Chautauqua, NY) this summer. They will then begin pre-production to direct national touring productions for TheaterWorksUSA (NYC) this fall.

Emma Denson (she/her) is the first recipient of the new Rose Directing Fellowship, a partnership with London's Rose Theatre. During her time at The Rose, Emma will assist Artistic Director Christopher Haydon on the world premiere of Never Let Me Go by Suzanne Heathcote, based on the acclaimed novel by Kazuo Ishiguro, which will then embark on a UK tour. Ms. Denson will also direct a project for the company's Youth Theatre.

Morgan Green (she/her), Lauren Keating (she/her), Jess McLeod (she/her), and Danny Sharron (he/him) have been chosen for the Drama League Television and Film Directing Fellowships, expanding their creative practice in theater into these related disciplines. The four recipients will shadow on episodes of major television series, under the mentorship of co-creator Tony Phelan (Fire Country, A Small Light, Grey's Anatomy).

Rosalind Bevan (she/her), Devin E. Haqq (he/him), Karl Michael Iglesias (he/him), and Martavius Parrish (he/him) have been chosen for the Irene Gandy Stage Directing Assistantships, which pair early-career directors from historically marginalized communities with established directors. Next season, they will assist on productions across the country with acclaimed directors Valerie Curtis-Newton, Timothy Douglas, Candis C. Jones, and Rebecca Martínez, respectively, at the Public Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, and Seattle Rep, among others. Mr. Iglesias is the first director in Drama League history to receive two Directors Project programs in the same calendar year.

Colm Summers (he/him) will develop his new play Falls as the 2024 Next Stage Director In Residence, joining Sarah Hughes (she/her), the new Beatrice Terry Director In Residence, who is developing her piece Untitled Dad's Email Project. Both Mr. Summers and Ms. Hughes will begin with a developmental week as part of New York Stage and Film's Summer Season in Poughkeepsie, NY, before returning to New York later in the year for a second workshop at The Drama League Theater Center. 

The Drama League Film Fund, established last year to support Directors Project alumni directing filmed projects, will support new work by Arin Arbus, Jaime Castaneda, and Desdemona Chiang. Ms. Arbus will direct the short film “The Cooperative,” about a fictional secret society in the Catskill Mountains. Mr. Castaneda will receive finishing funds for his latest film, “Sad People,” following two new parents struggling to find a diagnosis for their nonverbal 3-year-old. Ms. Chiang will direct “See You Tomorrow Tomorrow Tomorrow,” about a stand-up comedian who delays his career to care for his 99-year-old grandmother.

The 2024 Directors Project Recipients will join the ranks of over 400 Drama League Alumni including Tony Award Winners Christopher Ashley (Come From Away), Rachel Chavkin (Hadestown, Lempicka), Sam Gold (An Enemy of the People), Michael Mayer (A Beautiful Noise), Pam MacKinnon (Artistic Director, A.C.T.), Diane Paulus (1776), John Rando (Back To The Future: The Musical), Rebecca Taichman (Sing Street), Alex Timbers (Moulin Rouge!), Tony nominees Mark Brokaw (How I Learned To Drive), Moritz von Stuelpnagel (Bernhardt/Hamlet), Alan Schneider Award winner May Adrales (Poor Yella Rednecks), Obie Award winners Lear deBessonet (Into The Woods), Anne Kauffman (Mary Jane), Lila Neugebauer (Appropriate), Whitney White (Jaja's African Hair Braiding), Callaway Award winner Mike Donahue (Troy), and more. Ms. Arbus, Mr. Castaneda, Ms. Chiang, Ms. Keating, and Mr. Sharron return to The Drama League this year after previously completing a different Directors Project program.

The 2023 cycle of Directors Project programming concludes this week with DirectorFest, produced by Keen Company and featuring the work of Drama League Directing Fellows Ibi Owolabi and Nadia Guevara. For tickets, please visit the ticket portal. The 2024 Recipients will gather for the first time at DirectorFest's Opening Night on May 9th at Theatre Row in New York City.

The Drama League is the preeminent career development home for directors in the United States, providing them with significant experiences and resources to succeed in professional theater, film, television, and new technologies. Its alumni can be found in all aspects of the entertainment profession: on and off-Broadway, at regional theaters, in Hollywood, and as artistic leaders at 100+ regional theaters across the country. Drama League Directors have been honored with the Tony, Emmy, Obie, Drama Desk, Golden Globe, Princess Grace, Bessie, Drama-Logue, Barrymore, Evening Standard, and Jefferson Awards, among others.



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