Playwright-Driven Broadway Bound Theatre Festival to Launch This Summer

Tony winners Alice Ripley and Daisy Eagan will perform at the inaugural event, which will showcase 20 new plays.


The inaugural Broadway Bound Theatre Festival is set to launch July 30 in New York City. Over the course of three weeks, the festival will showcase 20 new plays at the 14th Street Y Theatre, with a focus on empowering playwrights to self-produce commercially successful shows.

“This whole festival starts and ends with the playwrights and their work,” Festival Director Lenore Skomal tells Playbill. Playwrights are the center of the production process and receive workshop development, industry mentorship, marketing and PR guidance, and aid with industry outreach.

“Experiential knowledge is so much better than reading it in a book or talking to someone over a cup of coffee. Going through the paces yourself completely changes your experience of it,” says playwright-author Skomal.

Though festivals like Fringe Fest NYC, which is not taking place in New York City this summer, have given artists similar support, Skomal says that BBTF hopes to excel where other festivals may have fallen short—by being a stepping stone for these plays to receive longer, professional productions.

The plays were selected by a blind submission process by a panel made up of 17 industry insiders, including playwrights, producers, actors, and directors. The focus was on plays that will have a commercial life beyond the festival, hence the name. “We want BBTF to be the launchpad for taking these plays elsewhere,“ says Skomal.

BBTF was founded by Skomal, general manager Abby Judd, and marketing director Melissa Gordon.

Among the performers involved are Tony winners Alice Ripley and Daisy Eagan, along with Tony nominees Sharon McKnight and Sally Mayes, who will appear in Phil Geoffrey Bond’s play Small Town Confessions.


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