CPT’s Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative Application

Cleveland Public Theatre (CPT) is now accepting applications for The Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative, a yearlong 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.

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

Program Expectations

The Composer/Designer 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).
    • Fellow will be required to schedule times to attend rehearsals with the leader of each artistic project they are involved in.
    • 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 may provide a series of other opportunities for the Composer/Designer to deepen their knowledge of theatre and collaboration, including shadowing experiences, internships, workshops, and forums.

    • Composer/Designer may be asked to take on a sound or music related project for the theatre—for example, running sound for a show, or assisting or producing specific music composed by others.
    • CPT may provide other opportunities in non-music/sound areas.
    • Participate in the life of the theatre.
      Composers/Designers 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 above experiences, CPT will also offer the following:

  • $2,500 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/Designer and guest to all CPT shows during the fellowship.
  • Additional payment in fees for additional work as agreed to by both CPT and Composer/Designer.


  • Applicant must be a resident of Northeast Ohio.
  • This program is not available for current full-time students.
  • 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, film, or dance.
  • Theatrical sound design knowledge or experience is preferred but not necessary.

Selection Criteria

We are looking for a Composer/Designer who has demonstrated ability and extraordinary potential.

We are seeking an adventurous and generous artist who 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/Designer who is at the “right time” in his/her/their growth to most benefit from the fellowship.

Applying for the Program

If you would like to be considered for the 2021/2022 Kulas Foundation Theatre Composer Initiative, please follow the application instructions below, and submit electronically to Cleveland Public Theatre’s Artistic Associate, India Nicole Burton at iburton@cptonline.org

Deadline:  Monday, August 2, 2021


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