Musical Theatre Writers’ Resource Center | NewMusicalsInc

NMI's RESOURCE CENTER for musical theatre writers

producers, theatres, contests, ideas, feedback, definitions, links, and advice

Tomorrow was made for some.
Tomorrow may never come,
For all we know.

--Sam M. Lewis


Here’s a vast source of producers, agents, theatres, contests, ideas, feedback, links and advice.  A lot of it is FREE.  Subscribers get additional perks, like the ability to SORT for contests or theatres which exactly match you or your musical. Or NMI staff’s insider suggestions about hundreds of ideas and stories from years of research in public domain libraries. Or the chance to connect with potential musical theatre collaborators around the country. On this page, we’re displaying just a few samples of the resources you can access. If you want to see complete listings, just click the links.

What’s inside the Resource Center?

Inside the musical theatre writer’s RESOURCE CENTER you’ll find links to:

  • hundreds of musical theatre contests
  • over 700 theatres and producers where you can submit your work
  • an idea library of hundreds of royalty-free public domain stories and plots
  • a Writer Bank of potential musical theatre collaborators
  • a glossary of musical theatre terms (with audio/video examples)
  • a page of useful links to other resources for musical theatre writers
  • access to short videos filled with tips and advice from NMI staff

You can see the full listings for FREE!  You just need to register.   We also offer a paid Premium version of the Resource Center which gives you the ability to SEARCH all the listings for contests, theatres, and ideas which are relevant to you and your work; and includes a monthly e-newsletter with up-to-date listings that come straight to you.    Take a look at some random highlights from the feature boxes of the Resource Center below.






new musicals ... infectious


FREE LISTING of hundreds of contests for plays and musicals.

Premium Subscribers: get the additional ability to search by keywords. Who’s running contests for ten-minute musicals or one-acts? Who’s looking just for musicals? Dramas? Comedies? Or search by special interest, or geography.

Here are some random samples from some upcoming contests/submissions listings:

      • National Alliance for Musical Theatre (NAMT) (December 7)
      • Samuel French Inc, Off Off Broadway Short Play Festival (December 13)
      • John Lennon Songwriting Contest (December 15)
      • Premiere Stages Play Festival (December 15)
      • George R. Kernodle Playwriting Contest (December 16)



How to Get NO Feedback from Elise: Vlog 27 – CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – EXPOSITION

The 27th post in the video blog from NMI Artistic Director Elise Dewsberry - How to Get NO Feedback from Elise. Part 2 in a short series on CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT - this one talking about using your characters as a tool to deliver EXPOSITION.To see more fom this series, subscribe to the vlog at

December 1, 2019     How to Get NO Feedback from Elise: Vlog 26 – CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – DICTION

October 6, 2019     How to Get NO Feedback from Elise: Vlog 25 – THINK LIKE A DIRECTOR

September 2, 2019     How to Get NO Feedback from Elise: Vlog 24 – THREE TYPES OF SONGS ELISE DOESNT MUCH LIKE

August 5, 2019     How to Get NO Feedback from Elise: Vlog 23 – THE POWER OF SONG

July 3, 2019     How to Get NO Feedback from Elise Vlog 22 SONG SPOTTING AS A FUNCTION OF THE BOOK

*** Visit the INSIDER TIPS page to see the full listing of insider tips and advice videos. ***


FREE LISTINGS of nearly 700 producers and theatres for potential submission of your work.

Premium Subscribers: get the additional ability to search by keyword or genre to identify who’s most likely to be interested in YOUR musical. (Large/small; comedy/drama; full-length/one-act; special interest like “women” or “LGBT” or youth theatre, etc.)

Here are some random samples from our listings of theatres and producers:

      • Hobo Junction Productions (Accepts Musicals / Plays / )
      • Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park (Accepts Musicals / Plays / )
      • Shadowlight Productions (Accepts Plays / )
      • Urban Stages (Accepts Plays / )
      • California Musical Theatre (Accepts Musicals / )



Here are the newest additions to our Writer Bank:

  • W.A.W. Parker - Bookwriter, Lyricist    SEEKING COLLABORATORS/PROJECTS
  • Carlos Benson - Composer    SEEKING COLLABORATORS/PROJECTS
  • Stephen Ken Nolly - Bookwriter, Lyricist    SEEKING COLLABORATORS/PROJECTS
  • Jordan Toopes - Lyricist    SEEKING COLLABORATORS/PROJECTS
  • Elias James Matthews - Bookwriter, Lyricist    SEEKING COLLABORATORS/PROJECTS


You may peruse the Writer Bank for potential collaborators.

If you are a logged-in registered (free) user, you are also welcome to enter your own information into the Writer Bank.

Not yet registered? Just look for the registration form at the bottom of this page.

new musicals ... infectious


FREE ACCESS to a library of 400+ downloadable royalty-free stories, plays, plots and other inspiring stuff we’ve found in the public domain for you. There’s a brief excerpt of every item in the library, so you can take a quick glance to see if you want to read the whole thing or not. In addition, the NMI staff has made annotations and recommendations for many of the titles in the library about their potential to become musicals. Save hundreds of hours of research and reading!

Premium Subscribers: get the ability to search the library for genre (Comedy, drama, suspense, ghost story, fairy story, etc.).

Here are some random samples from our listings of story ideas in the public domain:

      • Tennessee’s Partner (by Bret Harte)
      • Nose the Dwarf (by W. Hauff)
      • The Elixir of Life (by Honore de Balzac)
      • The Gondoliers (by W.S. Gilbert)
      • Puddnhead Wilson (by Mark Twain)



Here are some samples from our Glossary of definitions of musical theatre terms. We will be adding to this over time - as well as adding actual sample scores and sound recordings. Check back often!

      • Button:

        A musical punctuation to indicate the definitive end of a song. A button could be a single note, loud or soft, or a chord, or a short musical phrase. The button’s main function is to assure the audience it’s time to applaud. Examples include most every song from:

        • Avenue Q
        • Honeymoon in Las Vegas
      • The Complete Rhyming Dictionary and Poet’s Craft Book:

        by Clement Wood. New York, Doubleday & Company, 1936, 1991

      • Dactyl:

        A three-syllable unit comprised of a stressed accent followed by two unstressed syllables, such as:

        (I’m) called little Buttercup
        dear little Buttercup

      • Chord symbol:

        A chord symbol is a letter and/or accidental which indicates a root pitch on which a chord is to be built and other symbols which indicate the composition of the chord.

      • Periphrasis:

        Substitution of a proper name as a descriptive (associated with that proper name). Such as:

        He was a Quixote of the fishing world, with delusions of catching a swordfish with a homemade fishing pole.
        The Herculean task of cleaning the garage.
        A Sondheimean rhyme scheme

      *** Click to access the full glossary. ***


Here is one of our featured new musical theatre videos:


Here are some random samples from our musical-theatre related links:

      • Tisch – Graduate School in Musical Theatre Writing
      • Broadway Musical Home
      • Musical Theatre Mash
      • Performing Arts Live
      • London Theatres

      *** VIEW ALL LINKS ***

new musicals ... inexorable


Premium Subscribers receive a monthly email that lists upcoming contest deadlines; the newest members of the Writer Bank, some sample public domain ideas; as well as some fun musical theatre trivia like random lyric quotes, pictures from the archives, and listings of things that happened in the musical theatre world during this same month in the past. We know that it's not always easy to remember to come back to the Resource Center to remind yourself of what contest deadlines are coming up soon - so this newsletter will come to YOU.


Here is some musical theatre trivia about events that happened during THIS month in the past:

December 6, 1896     Lyricist Ira Gershwin was born today. On Broadway, he worked almost exclusively with his brother George on shows like Lady Be Good, Funny Face, Oh Kay!, and Rosalie. After George’s premature death, he also collaborated with Kurt Weill on Lady in the Dark and The Firebrand of Florence. For the movies, he also collaborated with Jerome Kern and Harold Arlen.

December 1, 1945     Bette Midler, the recording and film star who began her career playing Tzeitel in the original Broadway production of Fiddler on the Roof, was born today

December 2, 1914     Ray Walston, who appeared in Me and Juliet and House of Flowers before originating the role of a lifetime as Applegate in Damn Yankees – and winning a Tony Award for it – was born today.

December 23, 2005     Broadway theatre going more-or-less returned to normal following a two-day New York City Transit Workers strike. It was the first such transit strike in New York in 25 years.

December 24, 1893     Harry Warren, composer for most of the iconic movie musicals of the 1930s – including 42nd Street, Gold Diggers of 1933, 1935, and 1937, and Go Into Your Dance, all written with lyricist Al Dubin – was born today. He died in 1981, a year after his music was immortalized on Broadway in 42nd Street.

FREE ACCESS right now; just register with us and pay no fees. But for $50 a year, Premium Subscribers get all the extra stuff listed on this page.  Here’s a summary of the additional perks for Premium Subscribers:

 Free v. Subscription?


Free Subscribers
Insider Tips
Contests Custom search
Producers/Theatres Custom search
Idea Library Custom search; recommended titles
Writer Bank
Glossary of Terms
Monthly Newsletter
Format Guidelines $15 FREE
Creative Services $50-$400 off
Advice $50 off

advice, and online classes

The Resource Center is a very powerful clearinghouse of information and source material. But what it does NOT include are workshops, feedback, or advice on how to get produced, all of which have some fees involved.

However, premium subscribers to the Resource Center get discounts on our services, ranging from $50-$400.  Here are some links to pages describing how New Musicals Inc. supports writers and composers of new musical theatre:

New Musicals Inc. Creative Services — Script Analysis, workshops, table readings, concerts.  You’ll also find here some options about developing your musical.  (Hint:  look at “The Sandbox” — and create your own pathway according to your budget and timetable.)

PREMIUM Subscribers get up to $400 off.

Consulting/Advice — We’re known for our supportive, practical consultations on producing, raising money, putting together budgets, as well as artistic issues like music notation, script doctoring, etc.

PREMIUM Subscribers get $50 off.

Format Guidelines — Want your script and score to look as professional as possible when making submissions?


Souvenir postcard from the New National Theatre in Philadelphia. Early Musical The Black Crook – 1866. From the New York Public Library collections.



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It’s got to be love!
It couldn’t be tonsillitis;
It feels like neuritis,
But nevertheless it’s love.

--Lorenz Hart