CPT’s Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative

CPT’s Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative


Deadline for Application is

Monday, December 18th, 2017

CPT is now accepting applications for The Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer fellowships. The Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative is a year-long fellowship program providing early-career composers with first-hand experience creating music and sound design for theatre.

This initiative engages composers/designers in a collaborative process, under the guidance of the show producer and director, to compose and produce original music for full productions and works-in-development in CPT’s Season and to learn about other parts of the creative and production process of theatre. Composers gain hands-on learning experiences through sound design opportunities.

The program is intended to significantly grow CPT’s capacity for developing original music and sound design, and to support the growth and emergence of local artists.

In order to ensure the development of work past this residency, both the composer and Cleveland Public Theatre will retain rights to composed materials developed through the Theatre Composer Initiative.

Program Expectations

The Composer and CPT will work together to develop an intense and fruitful fellowship. The following represents the primary pieces of the fellowship, but the plan will be adapted to best suit the selected fellow.

  • Compose and produce original music and sound design for one full stage production or work-in-development. Composer/Designers will be expected to attend the meetings and rehearsals for each show. These meetings do not include the actual time composing and producing music for the show.
    • 3 early stage meetings with director and artistic team (75 minutes).
    • Weekly production meetings for six weeks leading up to opening (75 minutes).
    • One rehearsal a week for first five weeks of rehearsal (4 hours each).
    • Tech and dress rehearsals leading up to performance.
    • Meet with director and/or producer throughout the project to engage in a collaborative creative process.

The Composer/Designer will perform all tasks related to sound design and composition including recording, development of cues and cueing.

  • Participate in other learning opportunities and support CPT’s work
    • CPT will provide a series of other opportunities for the composer to deepen their knowledge of theatre and collaboration including shadowing experiences, internships, workshops and forums.
    • Composer may be asked to take on a sound or music related project for the theatre—for example to run sound for a show, or to assist or produce specific music composed by others.
    • CPT may provide other intern-level opportunities in non-music/sound areas.
  • Participate in the life of the theatre
    Composers will have opportunities to interact with staff, artists and audiences through attending opening nights, special meetings, volunteer opportunities and events.

In addition to providing the experiences in this program CPT will also provide the following:

  • $1,500 stipend.
  • Possible additional underwriting for musicians, specialized sound equipment for implementation of design, or recording to be approved by CPT Executive Artistic Director.
  • Free Tickets for Composer and Guest to all CPT shows during the Fellowship.


  • Applicant must be a resident of Northeast Ohio.
  • This program is not available for current students.
  • Applicant must have a college degree or equivalent in music or theatre.
  • Applicant must have significant available time to work on major artistic projects. Rehearsals and other commitments are typically in the evenings and weekends.
  • Applicant must have had experience in music composition for theatre or dance and basic knowledge of sound design.

Selection Criteria

We are looking for a composer/designer who has demonstrated ability and extraordinary potential.

We are seeking an adventurous and generous artist that relishes the collaborative process and enjoys working with others in evolving environments.

We want to have the largest impact on the community as possible, so we are looking for a composer who is at the “right time” in his/her growth to most benefit from the fellowship.

Applying for the Program

If you would like to be considered for the 2017/2018 Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative, please follow the application instructions below, and submit electronically to Artistic Associate Molly Andrews-Hinders at mollyah@cptonline.org.

Process and Notification

The selection process will involve interviews. CPT will notify all applying artists at the end of the selection process through a form email. CPT hopes to complete the selection process by February 19, 2018.

Deadline and Important Dates

  • Applications must be received by Monday, December 18, 2017
  • Finalists will be notified in January 2018
  • Recipient will be notified in February 2018
  • The fellowship year is February 2018 – December 2018

Click here for a Word version of this application.

Click here for a PDF version of this application.

CPT’s Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative


Deadline: Monday, December 18th, 2017

Please complete the application and submit it with your supplemental materials as an attachment to CPT Artistic Associate Molly Andrews-Hinders at mollyah@cptonline.org.

SUBJECT LINE OF YOUR EMAIL: state your name and “Kulas Composer Application”—for example: Jane Smith, Kulas Composer Application.


Title of Composition Sample A
Title of Composition Sample B


This document should not to exceed 1800 words. Name the file using the following format: “your name – Kulas Composer Narrative” For example: Jane Doe – Kulas Composer Narrative.

  1. Please read the activities outlined in the fellowship description carefully. This program requires significant time on-site at CPT and in composing and creating the music. How will you assure that you will have the necessary time to participate fully in the program?
  2. Describe your current state as an artist. What areas of your artistry are you most excited to explore and deepen during this fellowship? Why are you interested in working at Cleveland Public Theatre? What do you hope to learn during this program? Why is this the “right time” for you to undertake this residency? How do you anticipate the Composer Initiative will impact you as an artist?
  3. Explain your experience and approach to collaboration. Why do you enjoy collaboration? What advice would you give to others about how to best collaborate?
  4. This program is specifically for composer/designers who are interested in the theatrical form and who want to learn more about the inner workings of this discipline. Why are you drawn to theatre? Outside of composing, what other opportunities at CPT would be beneficial to your growth?
  5. Theatrical creation requires composers to adapt and adjust music throughout the entire process, often necessitating last minute changes. For this reason, prerecorded orchestration will not be effective. Music for productions need to be either electronic compositions or will require live musicians. If you anticipate working in the electronic approach, how would you use the additional recording budget? Are there any specialized sound equipment needs you believe your composition will require? (For example: Because of the complexity of my sound I will need a system that can handle 12 speaker isolations.) If you plan to compose for live instrumentation, who would you engage to play that music and explain how those musicians could be afforded with a modest budget? (For example: I plan to compose for a piano which I will play for each performance; or, I plan to compose for one cellist and I know several that can do the show for approximately $XXX amount.)
  6. Please share any important context for your music/design samples—was it a collaborative piece? Who are the musicians? What was the piece created for?
  7. Is there anything else you feel we should know about you in considering you’re application?


The following should be attached as pdf or word documents:

  • Resume (if you have separate artistic and work resumes, please include both)
  • Bio (a 200 word narrative of your resume)
  • Recommendation—you must include one letter of recommendation. The letter should speak to your talent and your ability to complete projects. A second letter of recommendation is optional.
  • 2 mp3 samples of your composition. At least one sample must be electronic music or apply directly to question 5 above: either electronic or for the instrumentation you propose.


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