Lab Company Design Fellows


The Hangar Design Fellowship program launched in the early 2000s to aid in the development of the next generation of theatre designers, providing an opportunity for intensive hands-on training in a professional, repertory model experience. This program is designed to help bridge the gap between the educational and professional worlds. Hangar Design Fellows have the opportunity to explore, grow, think, collaborate, network, design, stretch, and most importantly – to learn by doing.


Design opportunities include:
  • Costume Design
  • Lighting Design
  • Scenic Design
  • Sound Design

One design fellow in each discipline will be selected to come and spend the summer in residence in Ithaca. Design Fellows design the KIDDSTUFF shows, assist on some of the Mainstage production, and may collaborate with the Directing Fellows on the Wedge FutureNow Festivals.


Hangar Fellows Performance Series


The Hangar’s summer KIDDSTUFF Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA) series features plays and musicals selected especially for young audiences (usually ages 4-9) that include current popular titles and reimagined classics that reflect the diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints of today’s world. 



  • Hangar Design Fellows work closely with Drama League FutureNow Directing Fellows to conceive and create KIDDSTUFF productions.
  • When assigned to a Hangar Mainstage show, Design Fellows assist experienced professional designers.
  • Throughout the summer, Fellows work closely with various department heads and the production manager as they create designs. 


Learning Objectives

The greatest value of the Hangar Design Fellow program has always been the opportunity to learn by doing. As a 2018 participant observed, “To me the Hangar Design Fellowship was exciting and interesting because I could gain assistant experience with a number of designers, meet a whole host of people, be a part of a new theatre community, and design full productions…Over the course of the summer I gained so much confidence asking for the things I needed and learning how to communicate things in a way that would lead to work getting done well. I can’t express enough how valuable that has been in my career.”


Hangar Design Fellow can expect to:


  • Work with a director and other designers to conceive of and execute a design idea; from initial design and production meetings through to production
  • Improve practices for communicating artistic ideas and concepts with a team of theatre collaborators 
  • Develop tools to work efficiently, effectively and respectfully in a busy and fast paced summer repertory company
  • Collaborate and network with other designers, directors, and technicians with whom they may continue to create theatre throughout their careers 
The Ithaca Area

Sitting on the southern tip of Cayuga Lake in the Finger Lakes Region of central New York, Ithaca is home to over 100 waterfalls within 10 miles of downtown, more restaurants per capita than New York City, two major universities, and a thriving arts scene, of which the Hangar is proud to be a part of. Company members who opt for housing will be housed in fully furnished rooms on a college campus in Tompkins County. Work-related transportation and regular trips to malls and grocery stores are provided, but Fellows that are able to bring their own cars are encouraged to do so.


Fellowship compensation includes a weekly stipend of $425 and housing (if needed) for the duration of the residency.



2023 Program Dates: June 11, 2023-August 5, 2023


COVID-19 Considerations


All Hangar performance and education programs will follow current union and state guidelines regarding COVID safety. In 2021, we required that all Hangar staff and company members be fully vaccinated. Currently, there are no exceptions to that requirement. While we will update procedures according to best practices, this is likely to be the case for summer 2023 as well. Please continue to check in at our website for updates.


Submit applications here.

Any questions about the program can be directed to Colin Smith, Production Manager,