Participants Selected For DreamWorks Theatricals, MTI & NBCUniversal Emerging Writers Program


Four writer-participants for a DreamWorks Theatricals emerging writers program have been selected to help develop new musical adaptations of DreamWorks Animation films for the theatrical licensing agency Music Theatre International’s catalogue.

The program is sponsored by DreamWorks Theatricals and MTI in partnership with NBCUniversal’s Global Talent Development & Inclusion team. Beginning this month, the selected writers – Krista Knight, Joriah Kwamé, Veronica Mansour, and Kate Thomas – will participate in projects intended for the MTI catalogue.

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The program also provides access to various industry professionals and agents via roundtable discussions, master classes, and individual meetings to advance career development.

Drew Cohen, CEO of MTI, said in a statement that the work of the new participants will “in turn “inspire a new, expanded generation of theater performers, theater writers, and theatergoers.”

Selected participants in the Emerging Writers Program are:

KRISTA KNIGHT achievements include a Juilliard School Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program fellowship and the Heideman Award at Actors Theatre of Louisville (2016). Plays include Crush, Sloppy Bonnie and Lipstick Lobotomy.

JORIAH KWAMÉ is an artist based in NYC best known for writing “Little Miss Perfect,” covered by Broadway’s Taylor Louderman. The song has gotten millions of social media views and is being developed as a stage production. He collaborated with Benj Pasek and Justin Paul on the song “Top Of The World” for Lyle Lyle Crocodile, performed by Shawn Mendes.

VERONICA MANSOUR is a composer/lyricist/performer who has performed with artists including Kristin Chenoweth, Todd Rundgren, Chloe Agnew and members of the cast of Hamilton. She appeared on ABC’s The Goldbergs, and is pursuing an MFA in Graduate Musical Theatre Writing at NYU Tisch School of the Arts.

KATE THOMAS is a two-time Kleban Prize Finalist, two-time Jonathan Larson Grant Finalist, and 2021 PMCA Emerging Playwright Competition Winner. Her musicals and plays have been developed with, among others, Prospect Theater Company, New York Theater Festival, Open Jar and New York Theatre Barn.

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