Online Application

Applications are closed. We are leaving the information up for writers curious about applying in 2021, but please note our guidelines might change.

Before you begin the online application for Rhinebeck Writers Retreat, read the Eligibilty, requirements, and guidelines, and make sure you have all the following information and materials at your disposal. Please note: once you begin the online application, you must complete it in one sitting. USE THIS DOCUMENT AS YOUR ROADMAP TO COLLECT ALL INFORMATION BEFORE you start the application.  It’s not possible to save the application and continue later from where you stopped. The link to the online application is at the bottom of this page.


  • Musical Title

  • Is the project a commission? (Yes or No) If so, provide the name of commissioning organization.

  • Is the project wholly original or in the public domain? If not, have you acquired the underlying rights to your musical, including the rights to a full production? You may not apply unless you have a letter from the rights holder proving you have the rights to develop your musical.


Assign a Primary Contact who will receive all correspondence regarding the application and is responsible for disseminating information to collaborators. The first writer you list in the application will be your Primary Contact.


  • For all writers on the team, you will need to provide the name, artistic role (book/lyrics/music), email address, phone number, and zip code.

  • Each writer should indicate if the writer is a member of ASCAP, BMI, or Dramatists Guild.

  • Name the agent or manager representing each of the writers, if there is one, as well as their agent’s email.


We ask for no money from our participants and we don’t take a royalty. The only requirement is a title page credit on all future readings, showcases, productions and publications as follows: “Title of musical was developed, in part, at Rhinebeck Writers Retreat.” In the application, you affirm that you agree to provide Rhinebeck Writers Retreat with this title page credit.



Provide the name, title, organization, and email for one person who has worked professionally with at least one of the writers and who we might contact as a reference for your application.


Check off all of the dates that your entire team is available. All members of the writing team must participate for the full week. Arrivals are late Sunday and departures are the following Sunday, early morning.  The dates for the summer 2020 retreats are:

June 28 - July 5

July 5 - July 12

July 12 - July 19

July 19 - July 26

July 26 - August 2

August 2 - August 9

August 9 - August 16

August 16 - August 23

August 23 - August 30


You will upload 5 documents in PDF Format. The following are the requirements:


  1. Brief bios of writers combined onto one page, not to exceed 150 words per writer.

  2. Brief Synopsis, not exceeding 500 words, and be sure to give the plot of your entire musical since we are only reading 25 pages.  After the Synopsis, on the same document, provide a character breakdown.

  3. Background and Artistic Goals. Address the following 3 things in one page. Use 12-point type.

    1. How long has your writing team been collaborators and how did you meet? What inspired you to tell this story?

    2. Describe the history of your musical. Have there been prior readings, workshops, or productions? if so, when and where?

    3. During your team’s one week at Rhinebeck Writers Retreat, what do you hope to achieve? Be specific, referencing your musical’s history and needs at this point.

  4. 25-page excerpt from the script. Include title and writers’ names on the first page and number the pages. You can choose any 25 pages, but if they are not the first 25 pages, include a paragraph at the beginning to set the stage. If you don’t have 25 pages from the musical you are submitting, the document you attach should start with a detailed outline of the musical you are submitting, not to exceed 2 pages, which is directly followed by 25 pages of another script by the bookwriter, and clearly indicate that musical’s or play’s title and writers. The 25-page count begins with the dialogue (not the title page, etc).

  5. Lyrics for 4 songs you are submitting in one single document (see the next section titled “Song Submissions” for the guidelines on how to submit these songs). The song lyrics should be numbered from 1 to 4 in the order that you want the panelists to review the songs. If a song is also in the 25-page excerpt, indicate the page number where it appears in the excerpt. If a song is not in the 25-page excerpt, provide a 2 sentence introduction to set it up and, if it is not from the musical, include the source of the song.



In this section, you will submit four songs with a link to an mp3 file via Dropbox. At least two of the songs must be from the submitted musical and the remaining songs will be by the composer from different projects. The files should be in the order you wish the panelists to hear the songs and should match the order of the Lyrics sheet referenced above. You will see 8 separate boxes. The first box will be for “Song #1 Title”, where you will put the title of the song. If a song is not from the submitted musical, please provide the source in this box. Immediately below will be a box for “Link to Song #1”. This is where you will put the Dropbox link. You then repeat the same steps for the remaining three song submissions.


This section is for administrative purposes and grant proposals to foundations.  It is not seen by the panelists. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, religion, age, gender identity, sex, or sexual orientation. 

If a member of your team requires wheelchair accessibility, we will provide accessible housing for the entire team in one location, upon request.  Please indicate if accessible housing is needed for your team.

Secondly, please indicate if you or a member of your team would like to bring a child and a caregiver to the retreat. 

Lastly, please indicate the race/ethnic heritage(s) that members of your team identify with.


The Early deadline for applications is Monday, February 3 at 6:00pm EST, and there is no fee. The Final deadline is Monday, February 10 at 6:00pm EST, and the fee is $25, to help cover administrative costs.


Don’t forget to click the "Submit" button at the end of the online application. Remember, once you hit “Submit”, you cannot make any changes to your application. You should get a web screen confirmation immediately after. We will send an email confirmation once we receive your completed application. It could take a few days.



  Copyright 2020 Rhinebeck Writers Retreat.  

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