How To Participate

Instructions for Downloading the Rising Star Awards Information and E-Applications

You will find all 2019 Rising Star Awards general information and application forms here as of November 14, 2018. Applications are due by Wednesday, January 9, 2019 by 5:00pm..

Rising Star Awards Application

Rising Star Awards Rules & Guidelines

Rising Star Awards Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

All other applications (scholarships, support material, auxiliary awards) will be posted at a later date.

A few things you need to know about these forms are:

  • The forms are in Adobe Reader format (PDF) and are protected so that you can type, select numbers or check boxes only in the designated areas.
  • The form is simple to use, but for the Adobe Reader format (PDF) to function properly, you must download the latest version of the free Adobe Reader software, available at Even if you already have this program, it’s a good idea to visit the site and make sure your version is up to date.
  • If you experience problems with the form, contact Jason Gillis, Education Program Manager, at

To use these forms, please follow the directions below:

    1. Download the files and save them to your computer in a location you will remember, such as your desktop or a specific “Rising Star Awards” folder. Clicking on the files will only open them in your browser; instead, you should right-click (or control-click on a Mac) and select “Save Link As…” This will save the file to your hard drive.
    2. Make sure you are opening the forms with the Adobe Reader program. To do this, you can right click and select “Open With” and then select Adobe Reader. See above for instructions on downloading Adobe Reader. Please give your application a name that relates to the school you are representing and the type of form. For example, you can title your application: “HSnameRSAapp.pdf”.
    3. Once you’ve created the new file (HSnameRSAapp.pdf) you may begin filling out the form by clicking in the first form-field. The form-field will become clear, and you may begin typing in this field. From there you may [TAB] to the next blue-shaded form-field, and so on.
    4. Please follow the directions for each section of the form. Please read the entire form and answer every question. If you do not yet have a final license agreement for your show title, or if your dates are yet to be confirmed, you may enter “TBA” in those fields and email the information to Paper Mill Playhouse as soon as you have an answer. Schools should not delay applying to the program while waiting for these details. Send the application with TBA listed where necessary.
    5. Save the report periodically as you work on it in case your computer crashes. Always keep a back-up copy of the completed application on your computer. It is possible that we may request a duplicate copy of your application at some point, so please save a copy!
    6. Once you’ve completed the school‘s application form, save the file and email it back to Paper Mill Playhouse as an attachment. Email the completed application to: Jason Gillis, Education Program Manager: We will always reply to your email confirming we have received and can open your electronic application. If you do not receive a confirmation message within 24 hours, please call the Paper Mill Education office as it may mean that we did not receive your application. It is the school’s responsibility to ensure that their application arrived at our office. Schools should follow up with a phone call. You may confirm with Jason Gillis, Education Program Manager, directly at 973.315.1668.
    7. Finally, if you are not paying by credit card, we ask that you mail a check, money order or purchase order for the appropriate application amount to the Paper Mill Playhouse Education office within 10 days of submitting your application. Mail may be sent to:Paper Mill Playhouse
      22 Brookside Drive
      Millburn, NJ 07041
      Attn: Rising Star Awards
    8. Only a school official may enter a production in the Rising Star Awards. The digital signature on the application must be that of the coordinating teacher/director or a school administrator. Student or parent digital signatures are not accepted.

Rising Star Awards – Presented by the Investors Foundation is also generously supported by the MetLife Foundation.

Rising Star scholarships are made possible by Ruth Bedford in memory of Jane Burgio, Walt Santner in honor of Janet Sovey, and the Douglas Michael Krueger Scholarship Fund Trust. The Theater for Everyone Inclusion and Access Award is supported by the New Jersey Theatre Alliance.

This program is made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

Paper Mill Playhouse Education & Outreach are proudly sponsored by The Goren Family and Harmony Helper.

Paper Mill Playhouse is a not-for-profit arts organization.