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Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival

The Ken Ludwig Playwriting Scholarship

The Ken Ludwig Playwriting Scholarship

An internationally acclaimed playwright, Ken Ludwig has had a number of hits on Broadway, in London and throughout the world. He has won the Laurence Olivier Award, London's highest theatre honor, two Tony Award nominations and two Helen Hayes Awards. His work has been performed in over 30 countries in at least 20 languages. His works include Crazy For You, Lend Me A Tenor, Moon Over Buffalo, Twentieth Century, the musical The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer, and Shakespeare In Hollywood. His latest plays include Leading Ladies, Be My Baby, The Three Musketeers, The Beaux' Stratagem, which is an adaptation of a Restoration comedy begun by Thornton Wilder, completed at the request of the Wilder Estate, An American In Paris, a new Gershwin musical, and Treasure Island, which recently played to acclaim at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in London's West End.


This scholarship is designed to reward a playwright's continuing body of work, not one specific play. It is a scholarship award, and therefore the recipient must be a student in a graduate or undergraduate program for the upcoming year.


  • The individual must be a current undergraduate student or within two years after graduation with an undergraduate degree. As this is a scholarship award, he/she must be a currently enrolled student or planning to enroll in a graduate theatre or writing program in the following year.
  • The individual must submit a letter from a faculty member nominating the student and attesting to his/her student enrollment status.
  • The individual must represent a school that has a KCACTF associate or participating entry. A school may have more than one representative.

Application Process

The prize will be awarded based on a playwright's body of work. As evidence of that body of work, the writer should submit:

  • A resume of their writing and production history.
  • Three plays. One of those plays must be at least sixty minutes in length. Plays should be submitted with Title Page but no other identification of author or school.
  • A KCACTF Cover Sheet for each submitted play providing author and script information.
  • Submission deadline is February 1st.

Evaluation Procedures

  • The National Playwriting Program will establish a screening committee each year to read submitted work.
  • The work of up to five writers will become finalists, and that work will be reviewed by a professional playwright provided by the National Playwriting Program and the Artistic Director of KCACTF.
  • All evaluation will be done with blind readings that do not include the author's name, address or school.
Lupe Flores, Texas State University
Gabriel J. Dean, University of Texas at Austin
Christian Krauspe, of Arizona State University