Getting writers and directors on the same  page.
Without the drama.

Pam Koslow

Saturday February 25th,
10am to 4pm
TRU Writer-Director Communications Lab
Taught by producer Pam Koslow (Jelly's Last Jam, Jane Eyre, Yank!), Ken Waissman (Grease, Torch Song Trilogy, Agnes of God) and TRU executive director Bob Ost.

Writer deadline: Thursday February 16th!

The Players Theatre,
115 MacDougal Street, 3rd floor Loft Theatre

Ken Waissman
Ken Waissman

One of the most important - and most sensitive - relationships in theater is that between playwright and director. In some ways, the entire success of a show can hinge on the shared understanding,  trust and mutual respect between these two artists. The director and the writer need to see the show with the same eyes, otherwise their collaboration won't work.  This is important to establish in the initial meetings.

TRU has created a new, experimental program that will train theater artists in the crucial skills of communication.

In this Lab we will team ten directors with ten writers prior to the Lab itself. Playwrights will email us a synopsis, pitch and production history, plus 3-5 sample pages of a script; directors will select a project that interests them from those submitted, request and read the script and prepare for a preliminary director-writer discussion about the play. We will watch and guide that discussion in the Lab. You will:

• Discover your personal communication style
• Learn to identify the style of the person you are with, and adjust to it for maximum mutual understanding
• Explore non-threatening ways of discussing text, communicating and listening
• Identify your domain of authority, and determine protocols

At the end of the workshop, ten writers will have watched the style and learned the artistic approach of ten directors; and ten directors will have learned about ten writers and their projects. We will make certain that this is a safe space, and we will encourage honesty. We will lay out the ground rules at the start to try to keep writers from being overly defensive, and directors from being overly authoritarian. People will be encouraged to speak frankly and openly. And we will be diligent about stopping conversations and asking thiongs like "Is that what you really think, or is that what you think the other person wants to hear?" It will be like couples counseling.

Lab Directors include: Cate Cammarata and Susan Padveen, with 8 more on the way. Now we need a good mix of projects for these guys to fall in love with. How about yours?

Directors: if you are interested in being in this or a future lab, email us at

COST: $75 if accepted ($60 for TRU members)*
Price is the same for directors and writers -
we want everyone to feel like they are equal partners in this lab.

*WRITERS: If you are accepted into this Lab, and you also apply for the 3/4 Speed Date,
you will be guaranteed a slot in the upcoming Speed Date,
and you can pay for both events with a
25% discount.

Writers, CLICK HERE for Writer Application
writer deadline Thursday 2/16
To apply as a writer, fill out application and email to with 3-5 sample script pages from the project you are submitting. If possible, paste script sample at the end of the application so we can forward it all as one document to the participating directors. Directors will choose projects; if you are not chosen this time, we will submit you for future labs.

IF ACCEPTED, you may send a check to:
Theater Resources Unlimited, 309 W. 104th Street 1D, NYC NY 10025.
On-line payment (Paypal or credit card) at
by making a "donation" in the fee amount.

Arlene Corsano and I have almost completed 3 days of auditions for her musical which was invited to be in the Strawberry Festival of Riant Theatre, TriBeCa   We open Sun 7/31 at 3pm and will vie to go on to the semi finals and beyond.   When Arlene and I met at TRU's lab the show was called Write On Rosie!  Is now titled It's Gonna Work Out Fine, also an anthem title in the show.   Our TRU relationship, born in your excellent lab, continues with me acting as dramaturg.  Arlene's a wonderful writer, and very malleable.  Show had to be cut from two full acts to 30 minutes, Arlene got right to it and came up with a superb, tight one-act that with a little tweaking is being birthed right now!  I can't wait to get into rehearsals, we have some beautiful young artists on board. Thanks again for your lab, and for all that you do for all us migrant arts workers! ~Elizabeth Falk

This was a great experience and everyone I spoke to felt the same.  The way you set it up and the and manner in which the directors and producers gave their input created a positive learning atmosphere.   It was a great lab.  I thank you, Gary, all the directors and the producers, and anyone responsible for making it so.  ~Arlene Corsano, writer

I really enjoyed the workshop and glad I did it.  I will certainly recommend it to people…. I very much enjoyed Pam and Robert's input and was glad to get to talk with them.  Nice meeting the other people too.  There are even two of the projects that interest me. ~Brent Buell, director

It was a wonderful, very worthwhile experience. Many interesting contacts and potential friendships were made. I think you did a wonderful and insightful job in moderating the [workshop]. I'm sure it was much appreciated by all. Most certainly by me. I would definitely join another workshop of this kind again. ... I have been in many playwriting groups and workshops, etc. I have never been in one like TRU. If there are others that provide a similar concept and the kind of support that TRU offers, I have not heard of them. It is quite possible that TRU is unique. That's pretty special. ~Mary Ryzuk, writer

Andrew Carter and I are moving forward with my play. I've re-titled it, and just yesterday sent him the latest draft but we have a cast and have even met producers who hopefully will be interested. ~Marina Barry, writer

CLICK HERE  for more testimonials



PAMELA KOSLOW co-produced YANK! the musical at the York Theatre (nominated as best musical of the year by the Outer Critics Circle and the Lucille Loertal Award) and JANE EYRE THE MUSICAL at the Brooks Atkinson Theater in NY.  Her additional Broadway credits include the Tony® Award-winning musical JELLY'S LAST JAM written by George C. Wolfe and starring Gregory Hines.  Ms. Koslow produced FLOATING RHODA AND THE GLUEMAN written by Eve Ensler, author of the long-running and internationally-acclaimed VAGINA MONOLOGUES. She served as executive producer for HANDSHAKE, a new American play premiered off Broadway in Manhattan and was a producing consultant for THE HENRY PROJECT, based on the music of Henry Mancini, conceived and directed by Otis Sallid.  Other producing credits include CAPTAIN LOUIE, based on the children's book by Ezra Jack Keats, music by Stephen Schwartz, presented at The York Theater in Manhattan., SMART ALECK, MONA ROGERS, and HOW I GOT THAT STORY.

Pam has served on the boards of Manhattan Class Company, Second Stage Company, American Tap Dance Foundation and New York Theater Barn.

Ken Waissman
KEN WAISSMAN is a Tony Award-winning theatre producer. Waissman's first Broadway credit was the 1971 Paul Zindel play And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little with Estelle Parsons and Julie Harris. The following year, while he and partner Maxine Fox were in Chicago, they attended Grease, a popular local play about high school life in the 1950s being performed at the Kingston Mines Theater in the Old Town section of the city. The two thought it would work better as a musical and encouraged its writers, Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, to relocate to New York City and embellish it with a score. The result was Grease, which Waissman and Fox mounted off-Broadway before transferring it uptown. It garnered him his first Tony nomination. He was nominated again for Over Here!; the third time proved to be the charm when he won not only a Tony but a Drama Desk Award as well for Torch Song Trilogy. Other credits include Agnes of God, The Octette Bridge Club. Asinamali!, Carrie - The Musical and Street Corner Symphony.




Thanks again for the communication lab. I got a lot out of it and it was great to meet such wonderfully supportive people. I especially enjoyed meeting and talking to Claude [Brickell, my Lab director], and I thought he made a tremendous effort to come support me…. I want to say that the afternoon never felt draggy, and it passed almost too quickly. So, kudos to you and Pam and Bob. ~Damon Chua, writer

Damon [Chua, my Lab writer] and I have connected and will be getting together later. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting and benefiting from both Bob's and Pam's contribution.  They were thoroughly terrific. ~Claude Brickell, director

You created a wonderful space for us writers. And, personally, it could have not gone better for me and the relationship I hope to have started with Mark [Robinson, my Lab director]. He gets my words written on paper and that's fantastic. ~Jonathan Citron, writer

Thank you for the incredible workshop this past Saturday.  It really turned out well and I met some incredibly talented people.  Laura Italiano and I have really hit it off and have decided to keep working together on her script. ~Kevin Lambert, director

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