Please donate to support the largest student-directed arts festival in the country!
The Cohen New Works Festival is a biennial, week-long showcase of new work created by students at The University of Texas at Austin held in various locations in and around the UT campus. It is not just an event, but a celebration of a continuously ongoing process–the creation of new work.
Our Vision The Cohen New Works Festival, produced biennially, provides a space for artists to take risks, builds bridges between the educational and professional communities, and cultivates a diverse artistic community for students. In the spirit of playwright and professor David Mark Cohen, the festival celebrates and challenges the meaning of “new” in order to encourage the personal growth and empowerment of the next generation of art-makers and leaders.
● Collaboration: The Cohen New Works Festival encourages new creative partnerships across many disciplines and builds relationships across the Department of Theatre and Dance, the College of Fine Arts, and the University of Texas at Austin.
● Growth: The Cohen New Works Festival seeks to create a more robust festival experience by engaging our audiences through inventive new experiential formats and by planning for the expansion of future festivals.
● Equity: The Cohen New Works Festival aims to center the collective power and experiential knowledge that already exists in our UT arts community by affirming our commitment to the principles of diversity and inclusion.
● Risk: The Cohen New Works Festival supports artists’ creative autonomy and enables them to pursue artistic risk through clear, timely communication and the effective development and distribution of resources.
● Discourse: The Cohen New Works Festival creates new avenues for conversation and critical inquiry within our community and engages the national artistic community through partnerships with guest artists.
The Cohen New Works Festival was named in honor of David Mark Cohen in 2001, former head of playwriting for The University of Texas at Austin Department of Theatre and Dance. Cohen was killed in a car crash on December 23, 1997, but during his life, he was an adamant supporter of new work. In his honor, the Cohen New Works Festival continues to explore the endless possibilities of devised and collaborative new work.
Your donation would help fund student projects, stipends for guest artists, and a keynote speaker!
Since 2001, the Cohen New Works Festival has supported and showcased over 400+ student-generated projects, developed the artistic community for 15+ years by igniting student-generated work, financially supported student projects over the summer with our Go! The grant program, and have hosted over 17,000+ attendees in the previous festivals.
Today, the Festival has evolved to include not just plays, but all mediums of student-generated work. It is the largest festival of its kind, run and organized entirely by a committee of graduate and undergraduate students with the support of faculty co-producers.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, this year's festival is taking a new approach by showcasing over 30 new works virtually. This means that students (graduate and undergraduate) are developing groundbreaking ways to produce, develop, and showcase new works on a digital platform. There is a wide range of projects in store such as digital operas, online art installations, live full-length plays, and dance performances, and also cooking shows.
Excited about the Cohen NWF? If so, please consider donating to our fundraiser! Your donation would be greatly appreciated and would help support the largest student-directed arts festival in the country. Please like, comment, and share so other arts-lovers can find us!
In honor of David Mark Cohen’s mission to support the development of new works generated by UT students, we hope that this year's festival will continue his legacy and ignite the endless artistic possibilities that UT students have to offer.