News: Staging the World Mentorship

August 22, 2022

Thank you to everyone who applied – applications are now closed

An exciting opportunity to be mentored by one of the world’s leading playwrights, Tarell Alvin McCraney, currently Co-Chair of Playwriting at David Geffen School of Drama formerly Yale School of Drama; an ensemble member at Steppenwolf Theatre Chicago; and a member of Teo Castellanos/D-Projects. McCraney won an Oscar for the film Moonlight directed by Barry Jenkins; McCraney and Jenkins won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay.

STAGING THE WORLD is an intensive skills development program for artists, to work with and receive mentorship from established international BIPOC creatives.

Riverside’s National Theatre of Parramatta is an essential hub for inclusivity, creative exploration, growth and empowerment. Our work and programs are critical in that we invest in careers and open doors for our artists creating long term opportunities.

“The fact that we are kicking off the program with an incredible artist such as Tarell makes me so happy.  That he is committed to representation and has made the time from his incredibly busy schedule to be here with us shows me a remarkable and genuine human. This is the most amazing opportunity to receive mentoring from significant international artists. I am committed to having visible, powerful, positive role models for our artists and the development of craft.” – Joanne Kee, Executive Producer  National Theatre of Parramatta

Four playwrights will be selected to be involved in an intensive two-week mentorship with Tarell.

Over the two weeks participants will have the opportunity to take a deeper look at their own work and ask ‘why do I write?’, ‘who do I want to work with?’, and ‘whom do I ultimately want to engage with the work?’ Three questions at the centre of new work. 

I am always excited to engage writers and other artists in new work. I learn so much about the world and by offering what I know, I gain such insight and hope for the future.”  – Tarell Alvin McCraney

STAGING THE WORLD is supported by the Girgensohn  Foundation.


  • The mentorship is limited to four participants
  • Applications will be accepted from NSW BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of colour) playwrights
  • Preference to Western Sydney artists
  • A stipend of $500 will be provided to participants
  • Preference will be given to playwrights who have had their work staged.
  • Applicants will be advised in early November
  • To run between from 20 Feb – 3 March 2023
  • Please contact Sarah Mott if you have any questions.


  • Applicants must submit a play they have written
  • Participants must be able to commit to the full two weeks
  • Applicants must be over 18
  • Applicants must be from a BIPOC background


Thank you to everyone who applied – applications are now closed

NB This mentorship is only for participants who are actively engaged with writing for theatre.

ABOUT Tarell Alvin McCraney

Tarell Alvin McCraney is an acclaimed writer. His script In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue is the basis for the Oscar-winning film Moonlight directed by Barry Jenkins, for which McCraney and Jenkins won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay.  He wrote the film High Flying Bird which premiered on Netflix directed by Steven Soderbergh.  McCraney’s plays include Ms. Blakk For President (co-written with Tina Landau), The Brother/Sister Plays trilogy, Head Of Passes, Wig Out!, and Choir Boy which was nominated for four Tony Awards.

Tarell is the recipient of a MacArthur “Genius” Grant, the Whiting Award, Steinberg Playwright Award, the Evening Standard Award, the New York Times Outstanding Playwright Award, the Paula Vogel Playwriting Award, the Windham Campbell Award, and a USA Artist Award.

He is currently Chair of Playwriting at Yale School of Drama; an ensemble member at Steppenwolf Theatre Chicago; and a member of Teo Castellanos/D-Projects. Tarell is the creator of David Makes Man, an original scripted TV series for Oprah Winfrey’s OWN Network, produced by Michael B Jordan and Page Fright Productions.