National Sawdust’s mentorship initiatives aim to counteract industry barriers and the historic marginalization of diverse communities in the arts, providing artists and arts workers with guidance, financial and creative support, and relationships with established visionaries to accelerate their professional development.


National Sawdust’s Artists-in-Residence program provides opportunities for working artists to develop new work that lays a foundation for civic and artistic dialogue taking on the complex realities of gender disparities, racial inequities, climate change, and disabilities.

Hildegard Commission

The Hildegard Commission is National Sawdust's mentorship initiative highlighting outstanding women and other marginalized genders in the early stages of their careers, supporting them with a commission, visionary mentorship, and access to a network of leading working collaborators.

National Sawdust Ensemble

National Sawdust Ensemble (NSE), led by cellist Jeffrey Zeigler, is the in house band of National Sawdust.

National Sawdust Student CoLab

National Sawdust’s flagship arts education program, in partnership with El Puente Beaconfor middle school composers and artists.

National Sawdust-Juilliard Blueprint Bridge Fellowship

The National Sawdust-Juilliard Blueprint Bridge Fellowship is a dual-track career and project mentoring course designed to further inspire music composition students and recent Juilliard graduates to dream about building a blueprint for success in their lives through a dual-track career and project mentoring course.

Toulmin Fellowship

The Toulmin Fellowships for Composers and Choreographers were established in November 2020 by the Center for Ballet and the Arts at NYU (CBA) and National Sawdust with generous support from the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation to foster collaboration between composers and choreographers who are women and other marginalized genders.