BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop

The BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, a program that is widely regarded as the premiere training ground for emerging musical theatre composers, lyricists, and librettists.

May 2021

The BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop is now accepting applications for its 2021-2022 classes. If you’ve previously applied, please apply again since so much time has passed between our last application review due to the pandemic. While we are hoping to begin in-person classes in September 2021 at our NYC headquarters in 7 World Trade Center, your safety is our top priority. Due to the rapidly changing nature of capacity limits for in-person events, we will continue to monitor local and state guidelines and post any updates on this page.

Some things to consider before applying:

  • Applications for the Librettists Workshop are due June 1, 2021.
  • Applications for the Composer/Lyricist Workshop are due August 1, 2021, and from those applications, a group will be selected to audition.
  • Please note if state and city guidelines permit, we will hold auditions live in NYC--not remote--in early September.
  • Composer/Lyricist applicants will be notified by August 21 (Librettist applicants will be notified in early September).
  • If we can meet in person, please live close enough to New York City so that it’s easy for you to attend each week and meet with collaborators in between classes.

Please check back here frequently for more information, including the exact start date for the Workshop classes. Thanks for your understanding, and we hope to see our writers in person this September!

Applying to the BMI Composer Lyricist Workshop

Steering Committee

Patrick Cook, Director

Kirsten Childs
Frederick Freyer
Nancy Golladay
Arri Lawton Simon
Dionne McClain-Freeney
Mary Liz McNamara
Adam Mathias
Alan Menken
David Spencer
Sara Wordsworth
Maury Yeston

Notable shows

By current and former Members and Alumni of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop.


Workshop History

Learn about Lehman Engel and BMI's support for Musical Theatre through this award-winning program.


Opportunities & Awards

Presented by the BMI Foundation

Jean Banks Award

The Jean Banks Award is presented annually to the lyricist(s) and composer(s) of the best ten-minute musical created in The Workshop.

Jerry Bock Award

Named in honor of the BMI composer of Fiddler on the Roof, The Rothchilds, She Loves Me, The Apple Tree, and Fiorello, this monetary award is presented to Workshop writers and composers for furtherance of a promising musical project.

Jerry Harrington Awards

These monetary awards are made annually in memory of Jerry Harrington to outstanding members of The Workshop. Awards are available for first, second and advanced workshop participants.

Ellen Schwartz Award

The Ellen Schwartz Award for Outstanding Literary Merit in Lyric Writing is presented annually to a Second or Third Year participant of The Workshop.

Presented by BMI, managed by the Dramatist Guild Fund

The George Bailey Fund

This fund, donated anonymously by a Workshop member, was inspired by the film classic It’s a Wonderful Life. The fund provides first and second-year members with financial assistance for unforeseen expenses that would hinder the pursuit of their craft. Grants are awarded during each workshop term.


For more information about the workshop:

Patrick Cook
Director, Musical Theatre
7 World Trade Center
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007-0030