ShadowCatcher’s commissioning work reflects our commitment to championing exceptional writers, the craft of playwriting, and the development of new work for the American stage. 

Each year ShadowCatcher independently identifies and provides financial and developmental support to playwrights specifically for the creation of original, full-length plays with no restrictions on style or subject matter, but which broadly reflect the following priorities:

PLAYS THAT UPLIFT: We are interested in plays that explore a wide range of topics, including dark and complex subject matter, but always with an ultimately redemptive and hopeful message. We don’t endorse prudishness, phony optimism or oversimplification of complicated issues, but we want to promote stories that are empathetic, inspiring, and engender a feeling of positivity about our potential as human beings and the world we live in.

PLAYS THAT CHALLENGE AND SURPRISE: We like plays that are adventurous in form and content – bold, unfamiliar stories from fresh and distinctive voices capable of shedding a uniquely personal light on universal themes, offering us new ways of seeing and understanding the world and ourselves. 

PLAYS THAT CELEBRATE THEATRICALITY AND THE LIVE EXPERIENCE: While we appreciate conventionally structured and traditional, language-based work, we are especially drawn to plays sparked by a multidisciplinary theatricality that appeals to all the senses and fully embraces the unique and diverse riches of the medium. 

ShadowCatcher seeks to support playwrights of all ages and levels of professional achievement, although we are particularly interested in early/mid-career and emerging writers and those who bring original and underrepresented perspectives to their work. 

For more information about ShadowCatcher’s commissioning activities please email Literary Manager Thomas Park at

Although inquiries are welcome, please note that ShadowCatcher does not accept unsolicited materials from writers or their representatives at this time.


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ShadowCatcher's latest commission is an original work by Jessica Dickey whose play The Rembrandt is currently enjoying a sold-out run at  Chicago's Steppenwolf Theater. We look forward to developing work together that reflects our mutual desire to tell great human stories full of humor and heart. 

Jessica Dickey is an award-winning American playwright and actor most known for her play The Amish Project, which opened Off Broadway in New York City at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater to great acclaim from audience and critics alike (Helen Hayes Award, Barrymore Award, CAPPIE Award for Best Play, among others).  The Amish Project continues to be produced around the country and the world, including a recent run at the prestigious Guthrie Theatre, and was listed by as a play that should have been nominated for a Pulitzer.  It’s published by Samuel French.  Jessica’s next play, Charles Ives Take Me Home, premiered at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, for which she was hailed as a “talent to watch” by Charles Isherwood of the New York Times.  Charles Ives Take Me Home went on to be produced at City Theatre in Pittsburgh, Strawdog in Chicago, and Curious Theatre Company in Denver, and is published by Samuel French.  Jessica’s play about Civil War re-enactors, Row After Row, had its official world premiere with the Women’s Project at the City Center in NYC, followed by a regional premiere at People’s Light and Theatre.  Row After Row was recently nominated for an Ovation Award for Best Play after its Los Angeles run at Echo Theatre Company and is published by Dramatists Play Services.  Jessica’s new play The Rembrandt (fka The Guard) won the prestigious Stavis Award and premiered at Ford’s Theatre, then City Theatre in Pittsburgh, and will open the season at Steppenwolf this coming September, starring John Mahoney.  Over her career Jessica has been thrice nominated for the Susan Blackburn Prize and is currently commissioned by Manhattan Theatre Club and the Sloan Foundation to write a play about the Pap Smear.  Jessica is a proud resident of the exclusive New Dramatists in NYC. 

For tickets and more info on The Rembrandt click here



Rogelio Martinez is an award-winning playwright whose latest work, Blind Date, is being produced by Chicago’s Goodman Theatre this winter. We’re delighted to welcome Rogelio to the ShadowCatcher family and look forward to sharing updates on our exciting collaboration in the months to come.

Rogelio Martinez's plays have been workshopped and produced in theaters across the US and abroad. His play, Blind Date, will receive its world premiere this season at the Goodman Theater under the direction of Robert Falls.  

Rogelio is a recipient of a 20017 Guggenheim Fellowship and is also the winner of a Princess Grace Award and a Mid-Career Fellowship at the Lark Theater Company.  In the past he has received grants and awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts Grant, NEA/ TCG, and the James Hammerstein Award. After receiving an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation New Science and Technology Initiative Grant by the Denver Center, Rogelio went on to write When Tang Met Laika, a post-Cold War space exploration play, which was subsequently produced at Denver Center.  This inspired Rogelio to bring the Cold War itself on stage and write a three-play cycle exploring the time period. The first play in his Cold War trilogy is Ping Pong. The play is about U.S.-Chinese relations during the Nixon administration. It was presented at the Public Theatre. Born in East Berlin, the second play, tackled the impact a Springsteen concert had on East Germans just prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall.  The play was workshopped at the Atlantic Theater Company and has since been translated into both Hungarian and Romanian. It will be published in Romanian. The trilogy’s conclusion is Blind Date, a close look at all the backroom diplomacy leading to the first Reagan/ Gorbachev Summit in Geneva and the events that followed.

Rogelio is an alumnus of New Dramatists and was also a member of the Dorothy Strelsin New American Writer’s Group at Primary Stages. His plays have been workshopped and commissioned by various theaters across the country including the Public Theater, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Mark Taper Forum, South Coast Repertory, Atlantic Theater Company, Arden Theater, Asolo Repertory, and Ojai Theater Company.  

As an advocate of the arts and an educator, Rogelio has spoken before the Albany State legislature and worked with and mentored writers of all ages. Over the last twenty years, Rogelio has taught at various institutions including Columbia University, City College of New York, Montclair State University, Rutgers University, and Goddard College. In the summer of 2016, Martinez travelled to Portugal where he taught a two-week writing workshop.  He has also translated the work of both Mexican and Cuban playwrights.

Rogelio was born in Sancti-Spiritus, Cuba and came to this country on the Mariel boatlift in 1980.

For tickets and more info on Blind Date click here.