Performing Arts Fellowship | Theatre

About the Fellowship

The Performing Arts Fellowship is a $5,000 unrestricted award to acknowledge and encourage the careers of mid-career and established Utah artists who are demonstrating exceptional creativity in the performing arts. Six fellows are selected by an out-of-state arts professional. Performing arts disciplines rotate every three years between dance, music, and theatre.

Fellowship Guidelines 2022


The Fellowship Program seeks to support professional and committed Utah artists reaching pivotal moments in their artistic practice, as well as their career advancement and growth. Applicants are expected to demonstrate why now is the appropriate time in their career for this one-time award. Artists from all Utah regions are encouraged to apply.

Candidates for the Fellowship are identified through an open application process. All eligible applications receive equal consideration through a two-round review process (pre-screen review and juror review).

The Fellowship is not an award to support a specific art project, recognition of lifetime achievement, or for artists at the beginning of their careers.


The Utah Division of Arts & Museums Fellowship Program began in 1986 with the Visual Arts Fellowship. In 2019 the program was expanded to include Performing Arts.

The Fellowship is awarded to professional performing artists in Utah to acknowledge their artistic excellence and to encourage their ongoing career development. This fellowship is awarded based on review by a prominent performing arts professionals outside of Utah.

The 2022 Performing Arts Fellowship will award six unrestricted $5,000 fellowships. These unrestricted cash awards allow artists to decide how the funding will best support their lives and work.

Utah Arts & Museums is the oldest publicly-funded state arts agency in the nation, with beginnings legislated in 1899. From its inception, the performing and visual arts have been an integral component in fulfilling the goals of the agency to increase awareness and understanding of the public value of arts and culture, as well as invest in communities by strengthening the arts and cultural infrastructure. The tradition of recognition and support of excellence continues for individual artists through the Fellowship Program.


Performing arts disciplines rotate every three years between dance, music, and theatre. The 2022 fellowship focus is theatre.

Artists practicing in theatre arts such as acting, directing, dramaturgy, performance art (theatre), playwriting, storytelling, and traditional arts are eligible.

The performing arts must be a primary, significant, and integral component of the artist's work. Artists whose primary practice is visual arts may be eligible for the Visual Arts Fellowship. Designers can apply for the Design Arts Juried Exhibition

Applicants must meet all of the following requirements to apply: 

    • Must be age 27 or older at the time of deadline.
    • Must be a Utah resident for a minimum of two years prior to application.
    • Must have a legal right to receive taxable income in the United States.
    • Previous Performing Arts Fellowship recipients may not apply.
    • Individuals enrolled in any degree-granting program are not eligible to apply.
    • The Fellowship is given to an individual. Artist teams/groups are not eligible to apply.
    • Immediate families, board or committee members, and employees of the Utah Division of Arts & Museums are not eligible.

*Fellowship recipients are responsible for all applicable federal taxes. We urge you to keep all receipts and other appropriate records for tax filing purposes. Please consult a tax accountant with questions; we unfortunately cannot advise on tax matters.

Utah Arts & Museums is a state agency that provides public funding for arts and museums. As a public entity, it reserves the right to make final decisions about the use of public funds for projects, programs, acquisitions, commissions, or other activities as deemed appropriate by the Division and/or Board.


Round 1 - Prescreen 
Applications are reviewed by staff for completion, eligibility, and adherence to published guidelines. Applicants meeting eligibility requirements but whose applications are found to be incomplete will be contacted and given the opportunity to resubmit their application.

Round 2 -  Juror review 
The juror will evaluate work samples, artist bio, artist statement, artistic accomplishments, creative contributions, and dedication to the field of performing arts. Six fellowship awardees will be selected by the juror and notified by UA&M staff via email.


Kevin R. Free is a multidisciplinary artist whose work as an actor, writer, director, and producer has been showcased and developed in many places, including The Moth Radio Hour; Project Y Theater; Flux Theater Ensemble; the Queerly Festival; The New York Neo-Futurists; and The Fire This Time Festival, where he served as Producing Artistic Director for 5 years, winning an Obie for his work in 2015. He is now the Resident Artistic Director of FRIGID New York ( and was just named Artistic Director of Mile Square Theatre in Hoboken, NJ ( He is also the co-writer and co-producer of the award-winning web series Gemma & The Bear! and the upcoming Beckys Through History ( As an actor, along with performing in over 100 professional productions (including the world premiere production of WINK at Marin Theater Company), he became the first African-American to play the role of Bellomy in The Fantasticks Off-Broadway. An accomplished voice actor, as well, Kevin is the voice of Kevin from Desert Bluffs on the popular podcast Welcome to Night Vale.  He is most proud of his accomplishments as an audiobook narrator, having contributed to over 400 projects in the past 20 years, including The Known World by Edward P. Jones; Yes, Daddy by Jonathan Parks-Ramage; The Cost of Knowing by Brittney Morris; A Complicated Love Story Set in Space by Shaun David Hutchinson and all the books in the Murderbot Diaries by Martha Wells. Twitter/Instagram: @kevinrfree
Full bio can be found here


UA&M staff facilitated an online information session that walked artists through the application process.
Click here for the video recording of the info session held on January 27th 


  • Submissions open - Wednesday, January 19
  • Application online info sessions (optional) - Thursday, January 27 at 10 am & 6 pm
  • Submissions close - Monday, March 7, 2022
  • Artists notified of results via email - end of April
  • Professional development sessions - May 2022


Applicants will be asked to provide the following information.

  1. Bio - Maximum 300 words.
    A professional bio written in the third-person. May include the key focus of your work, performance related education, awards, significant past or current projects, where you are from, and where you live and work.
  2. Artist’s statement - Minimum of 250 words, maximum of 500 words.
    A statement written in the first-person describing your artistic practice, inspirations, and aspirations.
  3. Description of intent - Minimum of 200 words, maximum of 300 words.
    Please describe why this fellowship award is important to your artistic practice and development. Why is this the appropriate time to receive this and how will it advance you to the next level of your career. 
  4. Statement of working process - Maximum of 300 words.
    This is a letter written by someone that is familiar with your work. Statement should focus on your process, working relationships with collaborators and co-workers, and other aspects of your work that are not apparent through the work samples.
  5. Video, audio, images, or other documentation of work:
    1. You must submit 5 work samples from the last seven years (2014 – 2021).
    2. We will only accept up to two work samples of videos produced for web series, TV, and/or film.
    3. Playwrights - Please only upload up to 10 pages of a script per work sample. 
    4. Only one work sample can be from work completed in pursuit of a higher education degree.
    5. If an applicant is a theatre teacher/professor, they may include information about teaching but must also include information about work outside of their teaching role
    6. In the Submittable form, you will be required to list the title and year completed of work samples.
    7. There is an area to enter your website or social media artist profile, this is optional, the juror may select to review it or not.
    8. For video/audio file upload: Single files cannot exceed 400 MB and the entire application cannot exceed 800 MB. These files should not exceed 5 minutes in length, please attempt to edit files to be an appropriate length. If the files are longer than 5 minutes then you must indicate the time markers of the 5 minutes that you wish the juror to review.
  6. Professional CV: Maximum of five pages. It may include:
    1. Education
    2. Documentation of artistic history
    3. Awards/grants
    4. Commissions
    5. Publications

The application will be available January 19, 2022, via Submittable. The deadline to apply is Monday, March 7, 2022.

Submittable helpful hints:

    • Please white-list or add the domain name to your safe sender list through your email service. This will ensure you get notifications from us. Check spam filters as well.
    • To save and continue editing, click the "save draft" button. This will allow you to log back into Submittable and continue editing your application.
    • Once you click the "submit" button on the fillable form, you cannot go back and edit your application. You do, however, have the option to withdraw a submission and start over. As with any online submission form, it is advisable to review the questions and information that are required and complete them in a savable document, then copy and paste them into the form to prevent loss of data. If you are having technical difficulties, call Submittable at (855) 467-8264, ext. 2.
    • There is an individual attachment limit of 400 MB and a cumulative attachment limit of 800 MB per application on Submittable.

    Apply Here


    UA&M promotes equity that involves all people, including those who have been historically underrepresented in policy-making and fair access to resources.

    If you require a paper application, you can print your application and mail it to our office, along with a USB drive of images/videos. Please do not use staples, paper clips, or include any extraneous awards, pamphlets, or promotional materials. They will not be sent to the juror. Please only use this method if you have difficulties with an internet connection or uploads.

    Application forms can be mailed to: 
    Performing Arts Fellowship
    Utah Arts & Museums 
    617 E South Temple
    Salt Lake City, UT 84102

    Postmark deadline for mailed applications is Monday, March 7, 2022.

    If you have questions or need any support in applying please contact Jason Bowcutt, or 801-897-1367


    All fellowship applicants will be invited to participate in two professional development online workshops. These workshops will offer training and career preparation to build and maintain a thriving artistic practice.

    Workshop I | Taxes for Artists, Freelancers and Creative Businesses with Hannah Cole, ENROLLED AGENT, of Sunlight Tax
    Wednesday, May 4, 2022 | 11 am - 1 pm
    What can I deduct? Do I bring receipts to my accountant? Is my art a business or a hobby? What is a Schedule C? How do I deduct my home studio?  Why do freelancers have to pay taxes quarterly, and how do I do that? Hannah Cole is a tax expert who specializes in working with creative businesses and artists. A long-time working artist with a high-level exhibition history, and a tax and money columnist for the art blog Hyperallergic, the financial challenges of freelancers and small creative businesses are both relevant and personal to Hannah. She will discuss the basic tax equation, self employment tax and the estimated quarterly tax system, audit concerns for the creative person, and other tax issues specifically relevant to artists and makers, followed by a question and answer period.

    Hannah Cole is the founder of Sunlight Tax, which specializes in friendly, informative tax preparation for artists, and engaging, art-world savvy tax education workshops for artist groups, and in empowering creative people to set up for long-term success and take control of the financial side of their careers through her year-long artist-centric membership, Money Bootcamp.

    Workshop II | Artist Statement Workshop with Paddy Johnson
    Thursday, May 5, 2022 | 11 am - 1 pm
    Make your artist statement work for you. Whether you’re starting from scratch or updating a pre-existing statement, this lecture will give you the skills to clearly articulate your intent and goals. In this two hour session Johnson breaks down the structure of the artist statement, provides model statements, and looks at common mistakes so you can easily edit and improve your writing. The course also comes with a full resource package that includes words to avoid, a quiz on the passive voice, and a questionnaire that will help you effortlessly structure your statement.

    Led by Paddy Johnson, a New York-based writer known for her work editing artist writing, this workshop offers the opportunity to write in a supportive environment and learn the craft of describing your artwork in vibrant, active prose.


    Jason Bowcutt
    Performing Arts