** We are not currently accepting applications. Stay tuned for updates. **

Through the inspiration and generosity of Mark Bly, one of North America’s trailblazers in the field of theatrical dramaturgy, the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA) offers two innovative granting opportunities to support artists as they continue to chart new territories. LMDA seeks exceptional projects that are exploring and expanding the boundaries of dramaturgy in the Americas. This marks the fourth edition of the Bly Grant program. Information on grant recipients from 201420152016, and 2017 can be found at

The Bly Creative Fellowship and Bly Creative Capacity Grant are designed to identify and offer significant financial support for artists who are creating new approaches to dramaturgy and/or are generating programs that are committed to exploring the unknown. With these grants, funded by a generous donation from Mark Bly, LMDA is committed to facilitating the creative dreams of independent or institutional artists who are defining new ways of conducting dramaturgical activities. The grants will be administered by LMDA.

Since 1985 LMDA has defined its mission as affirming the function of dramaturgy, exploring its practice, and promoting the profession. LMDA has made its mark on North America’s theatrical landscape by serving its constituency (including but not limited to literary managers, institutional and freelance dramaturgs, educators, students and other theatre artists), contributing as a leader in the fields of dramaturgy and literary management, and advocating for the role of dramaturgs across all performing arts disciplines and beyond.

LMDA encourages a range of artists and institutions to apply. See guidelines below. The criteria for selection are broad by design. LMDA wants to ensure that the Fellowship and Capacity Grant are accessible to visionary individuals for their projects.

According to Mark Bly, “Ta-Nehisi Coates in his letters to his son in Between the World and Me writes ‘You have been cast into a race in which the wind is always at your face and the hounds are always at yours heels.’ A heightened wind of racism has begun to blow and the rabid hounds of conservatism in the aftermath of the 2016 Election have been set loose. In the face of this we were pleased to award LMDA Bly Grants and Fellowships in 2016 for Projects that helped to unite Black Theatres, to champion the Arts through Dance Dramaturgy, and to have an impact by funding Environmental Dramaturgy in the face of disastrous climate change and a national leadership that ignores incontrovertible evidence. Phaedra Scott’s ‘Black Theatre Commons Project’ unites Black Theatres and artists through an innovative online national platform. Kate Bredeson’s ‘Portland in Motion: Dance Dramaturgy’ seeks to introduce institutional dance dramaturgy into the Portland community through year long conversations, workshops, collaborative and solo projects. And finally, Amitra Ramanan and Alison Carey’s ‘Environmentalism in Action Through Contemporary and Classical Plays’ demonstrates how dramaturgs through a Greenturgy Bootcamp and returning to their own respective theatres can have a significant impact on their community's future environment through their dramaturgical work. All of these projects reflect LMDA's growing desire to have an impact beyond traditional dramaturgical boundaries and we look forward to receiving more projects of consequence from our members in the upcoming year.”

Application Guidelines and Conditions

• LMDA will award grants between $5,000 and $20,000 for individual projects (Fellowships) and for individual and institutional partnerships (Creative Capacity Grants).

• To be eligible, applications must come from individuals or institutions based in the Americas.

• Individuals who apply for a Fellowship must be members in good standing of LMDA. “In good standing” means that individual or student/intern membership dues are paid in full by the date of the application deadline and throughout the project process.

• Creative Capacity Grants are available to LMDA Institutional or Spotlight Members in good standing. An Institutional or Spotlight member applying for a Creative Capacity Grant is required to be a not-for-profit institution.

• Grantees should complete the project no later than 12 months from its initial funding by LMDA. Grantees are expected to attend a subsequent LMDA annual conference, to participate in a conference session related to their project, and to document their work on the project for the LMDA REVIEW and other targeted publications.

• Grantees must submit a written report, including final budget accounting, to the LMDA Board of Directors no later than 60 days after the completion date for the project.

• Grantees will be assigned (by LMDA) a Project Liaison who will serve as a link to LMDA and assist with project logistics, conference attendance, and other grant-related matters. Travel subsidies to the LMDA conference may be awarded on a case-by-case basis.

Note: institutional activities and programs that are already in progress are not eligible for Fellowships or Creative Capacity Grants.


Application Process

We are particularly interested in:

• Projects that help initiate and make visible new ways of conducting dramaturgy;

• Ideas that cross boundaries of disciplines, institutions and creative approaches.


We need a concise application that:

• Details your vision for the initiative;

• Outlines the nature of your dramaturgical role (as individual or organization) within the project;

• Specifies how this project will be able to move forward with the assistance of this grant.

The application must include the following sections (A-E) in a single PDF document, in this order (500-word maximum for each section):

A. Describe your project. What questions/ideas/issues are you exploring? What excites you about them? How does this particular project relate to your overall work as an artist, or mandate as an organization?

B. Why this project? Why now? Why does it matter? What about this point in your career or institutional life, about this moment in time, necessitates this project?

C. What aspects of this project define new ways of conducting dramaturgy, can drive the theatre forward and/or have impact beyond the edges of our field? How will this project create what you want to see in the world that is not yet realized?

D. Where are you at this point in your process? Describe your timeline; include steps from this point to your desired goals.

E. Required Support Materials:

  1. Preliminary Budget, indicating how you intend to use the funds you are requesting; include sources of additional funding if required to complete project;
  2. Resumé of professional accomplishments for artists leading initiative (three-page maximum);
  3. List of other confirmed collaborators, indicating their roles and involvement;
  4. For Fellowship applications only: include two professional letters of recommendation per application from colleagues who can speak to your work and/or this project;
  5. For Creative Capacity applications institutions must include a letter of commitment from a leader of each institution and a one-page company overview including mandate/mission.

Do not send press materials of any kind, including videos, clippings, photos, programs, kits or folders.



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