ORCHARD PROJECT APPLICATION FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
- HOW DO I/WE GET SELECTED?
We have created this simple application process to free up our resources to devote to the actual residencies. APPLICATIONS WILL BE LOOKED AT ON A ROLLING BASIS. After receiving applications, we will ask some applicants for more info and possibly work samples. We usually hope to respond to applications by the beginning of March.
We often are asked how competitive the application process for the Orchard Project is. Selection is highly competitive, with an approximate 7-10% acceptance rate. Furthermore, we try to be as transparent as possible about our application process and how open it is. There are indeed a few companies and artists who are invited to apply to the Orchard Project by our staff and our advisory board. However, over 80% of our residents last year were from unsolicited applications.
- HOW LONG IS THE APPLICATION AND DO I NEED TO SEND SCRIPTS?
We hate long applications as much as you do, so our application is intentionally very short. Complete our short online questionnaire. The form should take no longer than 20 minutes to complete. As we are interested in you or your company first and foremost, we do not require your to submit scripts or writing, but will endeavor to read every script you submit.
- WHY IS THE APPLICATION SO SHORT AND WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I SUBMIT?
Our initial application is intended to be the start of a conversation with you (albeit over the web) about the kind of work you do. Once we receive all the applications, we will separate them into various categories based on size and needs, and then come back to you shortly thereafter in order to add a few more specifics to your application. This system allows us to have many conversations simultaneously and slowly amass the information about you and your work our panel needs in order to create the most exciting and diverse season this coming summer.
- I AM NOT ATTACHED TO A COMPANY, BUT WANT TO SUBMIT. CAN I?
YES! The focus of the OP in the past has been ensembles and companies, but it continues to expand to more and more disruptive work and disruptors in the arts. Thus, the OP has hosted a number of individual artists. The experience of mixing these individuals with companies in residence has always proven fertile, and as thus, we are now making the policy of allowing individual applications official.
- IF I AM A PLAYWRIGHT AND UNATTACHED TO A COMPANY, WHAT HAPPENS?
We work with writers in residence to anticipate their needs to hear their work. One-off readings happen all the time at the Orchard Project, very often with the artistic leadership of the Orchard Project directing and including members of other companies in residence, apprentice company actors and actors we bring up specifically to work with writers. Many playwrights ask whether or not they should apply with a group of actors they often work with. In those cases, we are generally suggesting to apply as a single artist (or team with a director), and let us know about the actors in the "anything else" section. As this process continues, we will explore both the option of bringing them up and/or the idea of clicking you in with other artists/actors in residence.
- I'M APPLYING AS AN INDIVIDUAL ARTIST (or a TEAM), BUT I'LL NEED ACTORS. CAN WE RELY ON THE CORE COMPANY FOR WORKSHOPS/READINGS?
Yes. It is exactly the reason Core Company is part of the Orchard Project, and intended to keep your work focused on what is most important.
- I AM A DIRECTOR, ACTOR or DESIGNER GENERATING WORK. CAN I APPLY?
Of course. In all likelihood, if you are not attached to a company, we would probably limit your residency resources to a few artists.
- WHAT DISCIPLINES WILL THE ORCHARD PROJECT SUPPORT?
While the Orchard Project was set up to support theater, our support has expanded in recent years to include dancers, physical theater, composers, film-makers, novelists, and even app-makers.
- CAN I APPLY MULTIPLE TIMES?
Yes. What is important about our application process is the WHO, not the WHAT. As such a company can have multiple applications for different teams or groups that they would like to send to the Orchard Project. This is most likely to occur under the auspices of a non-ensemble company such as the vast majority of LORT and ANTC companies. If such a company applies without describing which artists in particular they want to support, we will ask for clarification.
- HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN WE BRING?
Anywhere from 1 to 14 participants. We want you to have the resources you need to take the greatest risks possible. However, due to limited resources, we may not be able to accommodate all your requests. Many factors go into our decision to support a residency, which generally costs the Orchard Project upwards of $250 per person per day to support. These factors can include questions about whether or not a member another company, our Core Company, or staff could effectively assist your process. Very often, we match sole artists in residence with companies also in residence -- providing the artist with overlapping resources that allow them to have a impromptu reading or discussion about their work. We have also been known to bring actors up specifically for sole artists in residence. This flexibility is something unique and special about the Orchard Project and we take great pride in how we make it work.
That said, if bringing up particular people are important to you, we would like to hear as much from you as possible. As we hope to be partners in accelerating your work, we have often allowed companies to bring up members beyond the invited number provided the Orchard Project's costs for those extra members is reimbursed.
- WHAT ABOUT FOOD, HOUSING, TRAVEL AND PER DIEMS?
This is mentioned on our other pages, but residents are provided with rehearsal space (five rehearsal rooms and various writing spaces), company management, accommodation, communal dining and magnificent upstate scenery. The Orchard Project also has a world-class apprentice program, and companies are encouraged to take advantage of the great support our younger artists can provide, which ranges from dramaturgy to stage management support to extra ensemble members. Transportation and honoraria/per diems are the responsibility of the sponsoring theatre company (or artist). One of the many reason for such is that it allows the Orchard Project to host companies of very different levels.
- HOW LONG DO I/WE GET TO STAY?
In the past, most companies have stayed for about a week, but there have also been some that have been granted longer stays and some that have chosen to condense their process into smaller amounts of time.
- CAN WE/I COME BACK?
Yes. We try to balance the need to open ourselves up to new and diverse voices with also being a true home to our current family of artists. We never see a residency as a one off, but rather as the beginning of a relationship. Hopefully you will too.
- WHAT OTHER ARTISTS WILL BE AT THE ORCHARD PROJECT?
We have already hosted artists from companies as diverse as Tectonic, Elevator Repair Service, Radiohole, Pig Iron, the Royal Court, The National Theatre Studio (UK), Belarus Free Theater, The Rude Mechs, A.R.T., the TEAM, and The Civilians, so you can expect a very diverse group.
- WHY IS THERE A $25 APPLICATION FEE?
In years past, our selection process was only by nomination. However, even with the nomination process, the excitement around the Orchard Project has led to a huge amount of interest, and the process has often taken longer than we had hoped. Everyone who works on the Orchard Project are working artists themselves, and the OP only gets their full attention in the lead-up to the season. If you have problems with the fee, please email us directly with the reason and we can hopefully accomodate. Application fees will be used to process applications quickly and ensure their timely turnaround, and any income from fees not spent during the application process is used as scholarship assistance for our core company of apprentices.
- WHAT ABOUT DOGS AND KIDS?
Great question. Hard question. We try to live by the golden rule while at the same time making sure such does not come at the expense of other artists at the Orchard Project. For working mothers and fathers, we make every effort to make the Orchard Project a welcoming place for families on a space available basis. However, the Orchard Project cannot be required to provide any child care facility, though we will try to assist in finding care whenever possible. Furthermore, we are working hard to address the growing needs and demands for us to support families in residence. In some cases when we allow families to stay in residence, we may work with the artist and/or company to cover the added cost of housing and/or food.
We sadly, however, cannot host pets. That is a requirement of the facilities we rent and exceptions are only made in consultation with our landlords.
- GIVE BACK TO THE ORCHARD PROJECT
The Orchard Project was founded by artists for artists as a place to support theatre companies and bold artist and their continued excellence by providing them with an opportunity to take risks in an ideal location. We take no financial interest in the work we help create. We instead look at our work as a necessary part of production, want to assist production in any way possible, and thus assume that we will be seen by all parties as an associate producer with no financial interest.
Companies and artists supported by the Orchard Project are requested to sign a memorandum of understanding that they will publish the Exchange/Orchard Project logo and credit:[TITLE OF COMPANY] WAS A RESIDENT COMPANY/ARTIST OF THE ORCHARD PROJECT in press and publicity materials related to the company/artist.
In addition, on the title page of all printed materials of future readings, workshops, productions, recordings and publications of projects developed at the Orchard Project, the company will publish[TITLE OF PLAY] WAS DEVELOPED, IN PART, WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE ORCHARD PROJECT, A PROGRAM OF THE EXCHANGE. Contracted commissions or producers do not affect the selection of projects for the Orchard Project, and commercial producers can also apply.
Failure to comply with any of the above terms and conditions will render in a penalty fee, payable to the Exchange, and render the artist or company ineligible to apply to the Orchard Project in the future.
ANY MORE QUESTIONS? EMAIL US AT INFO@EXCHANGENYC.ORG