New Play Lab 2023

Founded in 2016 the New Play Lab is returning for its sixth year to this year’s 40th William Inge Theatre Festival. The New Play Lab at the annual William Inge Theatre Festival is a partnership between the Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission and the William Inge Center for the Arts at Independence Community College.

The 6th Annual New Play Lab seeks to connect 12 playwrights with the regional and national theatre community during the 40th Annual William Inge Theatre Festival, April 20th –22nd, 2023. The program is headquartered at The William Inge Center for the Arts, at Independence Community College in Independence, Kansas. The William Inge Theatre Festival endeavors to cultivate, promote, and nurture a collaborative environment with respect to diversity and inclusion in the world of theatre.

Selected playwrights receive a professional public staged reading of their play, feedback from a panel of national theatre artists regarding their submitted and selected script, exclusive playwriting masterclasses with master playwrights, and full access to all private and public festival events, including meals.

Kansas proudly celebrates William Inge, the Pulitzer Prize and Academy Award-winning playwright born and raised in Independence. The Festival was created to recognize William Inge and his accomplishments, while also celebrating contemporary living playwrights. On the occasion of its 40th anniversary, the Festival continues its tradition every ten years to celebrate William Inge’s legacy. We will delve into William Inge’s Midwest upbringing and the paths he took to elevate his prominence in American theatre.

Interested Playwrights may submit a 10-minute or one-act play (no more than 30 minutes, no more than six actors) to be included in the New Play Lab.

The selected New Play Lab playwrights receive:

  • A professional staged reading of their play before an audience
  • Feedback on their play facilitated by national theatre professionals
  • Additional playwriting classes and seminars exclusive to New Play Lab participants, including a masterclass with William Inge Theater Festival guest playwrights.
  • Opportunities to meet with theater professionals from across the country
  • VIP Passes to all festival events
  • Meal stipend at local restaurants in Independence

Support for the New Play Lab is in partnership with Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission and Independence Community College

For any more information contact us at