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New Visions/New Voices

New Visions/New Voices is a week-long biennial workshop/festival for playwrights and theaters to stimulate and support the creation of new plays and musicals for young audiences and families. The next New Visions/New Voices will be May 1-8 of 2016. The public weekend is May 6-8.

Since its inception in 1991, the program has assisted in the development of 96 new plays, musicals, and operas from 86 playwrights and 37 composers, working with 57 U.S. and 10 international theater companies, and has received awards for exemplary service to the field from both the American Alliance for Theater and Education and the Children's Theatre Foundation of America.

Has there been a past participant from your home state or country?

While at the Kennedy Center, selected playwrights, directors, music directors, composers, and actors work collaboratively in a weeklong intensive to further develop new works. After revisions, rewrites, and rehearsals of the new plays and musicals, the works are presented as rehearsed readings during a three-day conference for theater professionals, educators, and others interested in the field.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the New Visions/New Voices festival, the 2016 event will include these initiatives:

  • An anthology, entitled New Visions/New Voices: 25 years/25 plays, to be published by Dramatic Publishing, tentatively in February 2016.
  • A four-country, seven-organization collaboration on an 'International Playwright's Intensive' (IPI), which will workshop new plays for young audiences from South Africa, Korea, and India. This partnership will take place at the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies at the University of Maryland the week before New Visions/New Voices with excerpts from those plays read during the New Visions/New Voices public weekend (May 6-8).

The New Visions/New Voices team continues to be committed to bringing international voices to our festival. As a result of the scope of this IPI initiative, New Visions/New Voices 2016 will not be including the International Playwright Observer program and the Translation Project as we have in previous years.

Additionally, due to the collaboration with our International Playwrights Intensive partners in South Africa, Korea, and India, the New Visions/New Voices 2016 festival will accept proposals only from U.S. companies.

Application Guidelines and Instructions for New Visions/New Voices 2016

For Works-in-Progress

New, unproduced plays and musicals for young audiences, submitted by a U.S. theater.

Submissions are were due by August 10th, 2015.

More application information and materials will be available on this webpage shortly.

Download U.S. Project Guidelines (link to PDF)

Registration to attend the conference portion of New Visions/New Voices 2016

The festival will begin on Friday, May 6, 2016 in the Kennedy Center Family Theater and will conclude in the early afternoon of Sunday, May 8, 2016.

More registration information and materials will be available on this webpage shortly. Online registration for the conference begins December 2015.

For more information on New Visions/New Voices, please contact us at:

Please contact us at:

New Visions/New Voices
Education Division
The Kennedy Center
P.O. Box 101510
Arlington, VA 22210

Phone: (202) 416-8830