Call for Proposals: HB Rehearsal Space Residency & Playwrights Reading Series

HB Studio invites theater artists and playwrights to submit a project for either or both of two opportunities for the development of new work in 2020: the HB Rehearsal Space Residency, and the HB Playwrights Reading Series. One application serves both programs. (Selected projects will receive one of the two opportunities.) Before applying, please read the details about each program below.


HB Rehearsal Space Residencies

HB Studio is dedicated to training and practice for the theater, and seeks to provide a commerce-free environment for the nurturing and growth of theater artists. In pursuit of this goal, HB offers six two-month Rehearsal Space Residencies each year for the development of creative projects. The HB Rehearsal Space Residency is an opportunity for practicing theater artists to collaborate on experimental projects, develop new work, and share workshop presentations among peers and colleagues, for constructive critical feedback and mutual growth. (Please note, the residency’s focus is on rehearsal and development, not production, and we are unlikely to select projects which are primarily intended to “showcase” work). The Rehearsal Space Residency is an open opportunity; you do not have to be affiliated with HB Studio to apply. However we do ask that our resident artists work with us to engage with our community of students and faculty while in residence at HB.

Eligible Residency Projects may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Rehearsed workshops or readings of new plays
  • New/exploratory staging or adaptation of existing works
  • Devised or improvised work
  • Musical theater works and theater works incorporating music
  • Movement-based theater work

If selected for a residency, you receive:

  • Free rehearsal space, up to 9 hours each week, for two months.
  • During the second month, free presentation space over four weekends (Saturday & Sunday evenings) in the First Floor Studio, which may be used for public presentations, rehearsals, or both.
  • Limited temporary storage during the second month of each residency.
  • An orientation to the space and technical equipment.
  • Announcements of public presentations via HB Studio’s weekly notice and social media postings.
  • An page created by HB staff for taking ticket reservations.
  • The opportunity to audit classes at HB Studio free of charge (one session per class only).

If selected for a residency, you are responsible for:

  • Sharing at least two public presentations at 8pm on the final Saturday & Sunday of the residency. Additional presentations on the prior weekends may be added if desired.
  • Crafting and running all elements of your public presentations, including tech, set up, break down, stage management and front of house.
  • Providing your own technicians to design and run the show, if using tech elements.
  • Providing your own costume, props or set pieces, as needed. Limited props and set pieces are available for use in the First Floor Studio. (Ideal projects will be those that cultivate a “no budget” aesthetic – self-produced, bare bones, etc.)
  • Creating your own publicity materials and promoting your presentations.
  • Gathering and sharing feedback on your work-in-progress from colleagues and audience is encouraged.
  • Completing a survey for HB about your experience at the end of the project period.

Note: The format of our residency program does not allow for AEA members to participate under the Showcase Code as the Code now requires performance dates during the week as well as weekends. Please contact the Actors Equity Association for any exceptions.

Click here to read about the 2019 HB Rehearsal Space Residency Recipients

HB Playwrights Reading Series

Each year, HB Studio produces one week of staged readings of new full-length plays. Six plays each receive one evening for a staged reading in the HB Playwrights Theatre, followed by a talk-back with the audience. The goal is to nurture the development of new plays, and provide a crucial step in the life of a new play that may not yet be ready for full production or performance. It is an opportunity for playwrights to see their work on its feet, collaborate with actors and directors, and share the work among peers and colleagues for feedback, mutual growth, and dialogue. This is an open opportunity; you do not have to be affiliated with HB Studio to apply. All original full-length plays are eligible, with preference given to works that have not received previous opportunities for readings or performance.

If selected for the reading series, HB Studio will provide:

  • Two days of free rehearsal space: a table read the day prior to your reading, and a rehearsal in the theater the day of your reading.
  • An AEA Staged Readings Agreement.
  • Technical and Production support.
  • Marketing, promotion, and ticketing.
  • If needed, help with finding actors, director, and moderator for the talk-back.

If selected for the reading series, you are responsible for:

  • Creating your own mini-production company: You will be responsible for finding a director and casting your own play. (We’re here to help if needed.)
  • Following the AEA Staged Readings Guidelines
  • Keeping presentations as technically simple as possible: no props, no interior sound cues, no interior light cues.
  • Providing pre- and post-show music
  • Participating in a brief (10 min) talkback after the presentation of your play, and finding a moderator for the talk back.
  • Writing a logline for the play for HB to use in promo and marketing.

Project Dates and Applications

To view application requirements and questions, view the online application.


Residency Start & End Dates Optional Public Presentations (8PM) Required Public Presentations (8PM)
Project #1 March 30-May 31, 2020 May 9/10, May 16/17, May 23/24 May 30 & 31
Project #2 May 18-July 19, 2020 Jun 20/21, Jun 27/28, Jul 11/12
(skips July 4/5)
July 18 & 19
Project #3 June 29-Aug 23, 2020 Aug 1/2, Aug 8/9, Aug 15/16 Aug 22 & 23
Project #4 Aug 10-Oct 4, 2020 Sep 12/13, Sep 19/20, Sep 26/27 Oct 3 & 4
Project #5 Sept 14-Nov 8, 2020 Oct 17/18, Oct 24/25, Oct 31/Nov 1 Nov 7 & 8
Project #6 Oct 12-Dec 13, 2020 Nov 14/15, Nov 21/22, Dec 5/6
(skips Nov 28/29)
Dec 12, 13


READING DATE (7pm) Rehearsal 1 – Table read (10am-2pm) Rehearsal 2 – in the theater, day of reading (2pm-6pm)
Play #1 Tue, June 23, 2020 Mon, June 22, 2020 Tue, June 23, 2020
Play #2 Wed, June 24, 2020 Tue, June 23, 2020 Wed, June 24, 2020
Play #3 Thu, June 25, 2020 Wed, June 24, 2020 Thu, June 25, 2020
Play #4 Fri, June 26, 2020 Thu, June 25, 2020 Fri, June 26, 2020
Play #5 Sat, June 27, 2020 Fri, June 26, 2020 Sat, June 27, 2020
Play #6 Sun, June 28, 2020 Sat, June 27, 2020 Sun, June 28, 2020
NYC Council on the Arts - HB StudioNYC Cultural Affairs Logo - HB Studio
This program is supported in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and many generous supporters.