“WORKING TITLE HELPING DEVELOP NEXT GENERATION OF ATLANTA PLAYWRIGHTS”
To provide playwrights with the opportunity to excel at their craft by fostering an environment that nurtures the creation of powerful, thought-provoking and relevant plays that bring new, diverse voices to the local and national stage.
History of Working Title Playwrights
Working Title Playwrights was informally started in Atlanta in 2000 by a group of six playwrights who were part of the recently-disbanded Blue Machine Writers. They founded WTP with the goal of helping playwrights to develop their work in bi-monthly critique sessions.
2002 – WTP officially incorporates as a 501(c)(3) non-profit. WTP begins presenting public readings, and produces several new play festivals including collaborations with Push Push Theater, First Glance Atlanta Festival, and more.
2004 – WTP hires its first Managing Director. The On-Demand Reading Series, educational seminars, and participation in the national Sister City program are established.
2005 – WTP hires its first Artistic Director. WTP’s Summer Reading Series – week-long workshops for plays in progress culminating in public staged readings – is launched. WTP holds its first Playwright’s Slam.
2006 – WTP merges with Southeast Playwrights Project, making it the largest organization in the Southeast focused exclusively on the development of new plays. The Patrick Gaffney Scholarship Fund is established, which provides support for the development of up-and-coming playwrights for several years. WTP combines the Managing Director and Artistic Director positions into a single Managing Artistic Director and Jill Patrick is hired to be M/AD.
2007 – The Playwrights Salon, short workshops for plays in progress, and the Kick Ass Playwriting Workshop, a series of classes led by Atlanta’s Dramatists Guild rep, are launched.
2009 – The Ethel Woolson Lab (EWL) is established, replacing the Summer Reading Series. WTP becomes host to The 24 Hour Plays in Atlanta. The fundraiser becomes an annual event, playing before sold-out houses and serving as an important part of the budget for WTP.
2012 – WTP celebrates its 10th anniversary by presenting The WTP Chain Play – a single play in ten scenes, written anonymously relay-style by ten different playwrights.
2013 – WTP fortifies its educational programming with workshops led by nationally-prominent playwrights from around the country. Among the first plays developed through the intensive EWL, most receive significant productions locally and nationally.
2014 – WTP’s roster of playwrights expands to 70. Dozens of local theatres produce work developed by WTP playwrights. The reach and impact of WTP members continues to expand regionally and nationally. WTP also utilizes the paid services of more than 50 other theatre artists (including actors, directors, and dramaturgs).
2016 -Jill Patrick steps down as M/AD and WTP hires their second Managing Artistic Director, Amber Bradshaw. WTP now serves a roster of 80 member playwrights. The First Light Reading Series is launched, replacing the On Demand Series and partnering with local professional theaters, expanding WTP’s reach into the community. WTP hires it’s first graphic designer to solidify the public identity of the organization. The WTP Rhame Mentorship Program is established with a generous grant from the Rhame Family Foundation; 12 student playwrights are granted free membership to WTP. Looking forward, WTP continues to grow it’s influence in the community and throughout the Southeast.
Throughout its history, WTP has benefited from partnerships from some of the top theatres in Atlanta including Academy Theatre, Actor’s Express, the Alliance Theatre, Atlanta Classical Theatre, Dad’s Garage, Horizon Theatre Company, OnStage Atlanta, Push Push Theater, Essential Theatre, Out of Box, Emory University, Aurora Theater, Stage Door Players, Synchronicity Theatre, Out Front Theatre Company and more. WTP thanks these theatres, our past and current leadership, and all who believe that new voices belong on their stage and part of their season.
Pictured in banner: Enoch King, Suzanne Roush, Daryl Lisa Fazio, Olubajo Sonubi and Kevin Stillwell reading from member work at the Decatur Arts Festival. Photo credit: Danyale Taylor