Application Open for New Theater Critics Program

Apply to receive training and mentorship leading to a first published review in The DC Line, DC Trending, or DC Theater Arts. This opportunity is available through support from HumanitiesDC.

The application period opens November 17, 2022, and the deadline to apply is December 10, 2022. Notification will be made to selected applicants by December 20, 2022. The link to the online applications is below.

The program includes three required workshops, attendance at two performances, and creation of a practice review and a review for publication.

Workshop 1: Saturday January 14, 2023, 1-3pm, over zoom. In the first workshop, Nicole Hertvik, editor and publisher of DC Theater Arts, will introduce the basics of writing a standard piece of theater criticism.

Between the first and second workshop, participants will attend a matinee performance as a group (on Sunday, January 15) and write a practice review. Those reviews are due January 18.

Workshop 2: Saturday January 21, 2023, 1-3pm, over zoom. In the second workshop participants will consider and critique the practice reviews with Nicole Hertvik.

Between Sunday January 22 and February 18 cohort participants will be assigned to attend a performance and to author a review for publication in The DC Line, DC Trending, or DC Theater Arts.

Workshop 3: Saturday February 25, 2023, 10am to 11:30am, in person, at D.C.’s MLK Library. Cohort participants will be split and assigned to attend one of the public workshops occurring within the upcoming theater journalism conference, taught by Peter Marks (Washington Post) and Celia Wren (Washington Post.)

Honoraria payment will be made to participants: $200 following the second workshop session, and the second $200 on review publication. Participant reviews will be published between January 25 and March 31, 2023.

About the Program:

The new theater critics program is produced within Day Eight’s annual arts journalism conference, which in 2023 will focus on DC theater journalism. Partners in the conference include the Studio Acting Conservatory, Arena Stage, DC Theater Arts, Mosaic Theater, Roundhouse Theater, The Anacaostia Coordinating Council, Studio Theater, Shakespeare Theater, Signature Theater, DCTrending, The DC Line, and others, and is produced through support from HumanitiesDC and the DC Commission on the Arts. New theater critics program participants will be selected by Stuart Anderson (ACC/FFOIP/Day Eight) Robert Bettmann (Day Eight), and Nicole Hertvik (DCTA.)

About the Workshop Teachers:

Nicole Hertvik is the editor and publisher of DC Theater Arts, the D.C. region’s most comprehensive online theater publication. She is also a freelance writer covering theater for publications including DCist, District Fray, and American Theatre Magazine. Nicole was a 2019 Fellow at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s National Critics Institute.

Celia Wren is a freelance arts journalist who covers theater regularly for the Washington Post. Her articles about culture and books have also appeared in the New York Times, the Village Voice, Newsday, the Boston Globe, the New York Observer, the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Smithsonian, among other publications. She is a former managing editor of American Theatre and a longtime TV and media critic for Commonweal.

Peter Marks joined The Washington Post as its chief drama critic in 2002. Previously, he worked for more than nine years at the New York Times, where he was a drama critic, theater reporter, metro reporter and national correspondent during the 2000 presidential campaign. He was also a feature writer and reporter at Newsday, where he was a member of a team that won a Pulitzer Prize for spot news reporting. He has chaired the Pulitzer Prize drama jury four times and is co-author of the book “Good for the Money: My Fight to Pay Back America,” published by St. Martin’s Press.

Image in the post (c) Mosaic Theater.