developmental New Works series


Playwright submissions

now open

June 30-AUGUST 30

Our Mission

The Undiscovered Works program is a developmental incubator series for new work. We are currently looking for early-to-mid-career playwrights focused on creating work that is socially and politically charged, who are interested in asking risky questions, and who can bring new stories and voices to the theatrical canon. We do not shy away from plays that challenge or break the ‘accepted’ structure, form, or narrative of theater. We are incredibly passionate about amplifying historically underrepresented voices, and are dedicated to providing a creative team (director and dramaturg) who can fully support that vision and story. 

More Information

We are currently looking to collaborate with THREE Bay Area* writers who have an unproduced script they are looking to develop. Each selected writer will be paired with a director and dramaturg (recommendations from playwright accepted) who will help to shape the writer’s piece over the course of a month. 

The process will consist of early developmental sessions with the director and dramaturg, an in-house reading, 3 developmental-style rehearsals with actors, and culminate in a final staged reading and talkback. We are dedicated to the continued success of the plays we pick, even after this series ends. This could mean the possibility of further development over the course of the next year; including additional workshops, staged readings, and a full production with Custom Made. If the play is not a fit for future development at Custom Made, we will make it our mission to matchmake the playwright’s work with another local company.

Submission guidelines

The submitted play CANNOT have had its world premiere prior to being in the festival. The play should require no more than 6 actors. The play must be a full draft: scenes can be added/edited as development proceeds, but we are not seeking partial scripts. The work does not need to be “done” by any means, but there is value in having a draft fully thought out, so that the playwright can give their mind the creative space to focus on developing and shaping in the limited time available. 

We are relaunching and reshaping this program, which includes a change in leadership, funding, and resources. We are dedicated to paying all artists associated with the project. We currently  provide a $100 stipend, and are working incredibly hard to secure more funding to increase this stipend upon success. We want to be completely transparent with you. This program is for YOU as artists and your development, and we want to compensate you for your time, energy, and talent. 

*Bay Area playwrights are those writers who reside in any of the nine Bay Area counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma.


Due to COVID-19, all rehearsals and public presentations have a possibility of being in a digital format, although our hope is to host rehearsals in person by Fall.  

Rehearsals for all plays will begin in Fall. Staged Reading will happen in late Fall/early Winter. 

Applicants for the New Works Program at Custom Made should submit:

As One Document

1) Your script (in PDF form)

-Please omit your name from every page, except for the title page

As a Separate Document

2) A one to two page cheat sheet of your work: (nothing fancy)

-A Character Breakdown

-A Synopsis 

-If developed elsewhere, please list where.

-An explanation of what you wanted to work on/expand in this development process. 

3) A theatrical resume and bio if you have one.


When submitting please put “PLAYWRIGHT’S FIRST NAME_LAST NAME, UDW Submission” (ex: CIERA_EIS, UDW Submission) in the subject line. The window for submissions is open from June 30th-August 30th, and you will be informed if picked for the series by September 6th. Please send all submissions to Ciera Eis at [email protected].

Playwrights of all ethnic and racial backgrounds, genders, and disabilities are encouraged to submit.  



Can I submit multiple scripts to the program?

We will not be taking more than one script from each individual submission.

How long will it take to hear back from Custom Made?

You will receive a confirmation of receipt email within the first three days of submitting your play. You will hear back from us by early September if your play was chosen for the development process.

Is there a limit on script length?

Please do not submit a script that is over 175 pages.

Is there something in particular the festival is NOT looking for?

At this time, we are less interested in plays that hew too closely to existing playwrights and traditional styles of theater.

Will you take my script if it has had a reading elsewhere?

Yes! We are here to support the next steps of the development of this piece. We will not, however, take pieces that have already been fully produced, had their world premiere, prior to this incubator series.


History of Undiscovered works

History of the UDW Series


CALAMUS by Patric Verrone, directed by Alejandro Torres
PREAPOCALYPTICA by Erin Marie Panttaja, directed by Rem Myers
VOZARA by Naseem Badie, directed by Mostafa Elmorssy
INTIMATES by Nicole Jost, directed by Deborah Murphy
CALAMUS by Patric Verrone, directed by Alejandro Torres
VOZARA by Naseem Badie, directed by Mostafa Elmorssy
PREAPOCALYPTICA by Erin Marie Panttaja, directed by Rem Myers
INTIMATES, by Nicole Jost, directed by Deborah Murphy

Workshop: THE MOURNER by Bridgette Dutta Portman, directed by Paul Stout. A co-production with the EXIT Theatre.


Development Program:
The Mourner by Bridgette Dutta Portman, directed by Paul Stout
The Sorrows by Carson Beker, directed by Juliana Lustenader
Erinyes/Eumenides by Rebecca Longworth, directed by Allie Moss

You’ll Not Feel The Drowning by Marissa Skudlarek, directed by Gabriel A. Ross


Development Program:
An Ear For Voices by Alina Trowbridge, directed by Nikki Meñez
The Princess and the Porn Star by Kirk Shimano, directed by Dave Sikula
Oceanus by Daniel Hirsch and Siyu Song, directed by Rebecca Longworth
You’ll Not Feel The Drowning by Marissa Skudlarek, directed by Gabriel A. Ross

Punk As Fuck by Barbara Jwanouskos, directed by Logan Ellis
Truest by Megan Cohen, directed by Ellery Schaar

Las Pajaritas by Jordan Ramirez Puckett, directed by Ted Zoldan
The Whitelisted by Jason Mendez, directed by Ted Zoldan
Siesta Key by Jonathan Spector, directed by Brian Katz

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