This spring marks the 34th Annual Arts + Business Council Awards Celebration, an opportunity for us to shine a spotlight on the leaders,  volunteers, artists, organizations, and partnerships that are doing groundbreaking work to support the creative economy.


The PNC Arts Alive Award for Innovation
in Honor of Peggy Amsterdam 2019 Honoree




We’re proud to announce Philadelphia Young Playwrights as the 2019 recipient of the PNC Arts Alive Award for Innovation in Honor of Peggy Amsterdam. The award recognizes a visual and/or performing arts group that has successfully demonstrated an innovative approach to increasing arts access and engagement.

About Philadelphia Young Playwrights

Philadelphia Young Playwrights (PYP) was founded in 1987 with the mission to utilize playwriting as a literacy-learning tool and as an opportunity to engage students in new, creative ways. PYP’s continued objective is to tap the potential of youth and inspire learning through playwriting. Currently, the organization reaches more than 2,100 students annually through long-term classroom residencies in public, charter, and private schools in Greater Philadelphia, with a special emphasis on the School District of Philadelphia. Through the Core Program, students experience the writing process as artists and are guided by classroom teachers and Teaching Artists, students participate in weekly workshops resulting in approximately 25 hours of instruction. After their residencies, roughly 800 students submit plays each year to be considered for further development and production as part of the Play Development Series (PDS). Through the PDS, students work alongside professional directors, dramaturgs, designers, and actors to bring their plays to life from page to the stage.

Outside of the classroom, PYP engages youth through special projects and initiatives. In 2017, PYP launched its podcast, Mouthful, which explores timely topics and themes in student-written dramatic monologues through broader community conversations. A combination of performance, interview, and conversation, Mouthful is currently in its third season and has reached more than 40,000 listeners in 40+ states. A television adaptation of the podcast, produced in partnership with Lehigh-based PBS39, is forthcoming.

PYP is the only organization in Philadelphia—a city that is increasingly reputable as a center for new play development nationally—that expressly engages students in the process of playwriting as a vehicle to increase writing-based literacy. A leader in trauma-informed practices in arts education, PYP places value in young people, cultivates students to become confident, engaged citizen artists, and builds 21st-century skills like effective communication, creativity, and collaboration.

34th Annual Awards Celebration

Together with over 500 business, legal, technology, and creative professionals, we’ll be gathering to honor and celebrate these exceptional individuals and organizations who drive change and innovation in our communities.

May 29, 2019 | 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. | Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts