Please don't start a theatre company! — Rebecca Novick — AAPEX

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Please don't start a theatre company!

"We should encourage apprentice artists to self-produce work, or band together and produce each other's work. We should not demand that they cloak that straightforward practice in the trappings of a made-up company simply to attract funding or press notice. Moreover, we should encourage artists to operate like bands do — coming together to play a few gigs, then dissolving as people's interests diverge, perhaps performing regularly with a few different groups and experimenting with different styles and genres. Forming a permanent company at this stage is a bit like getting married too young, before you've had the chance to discover your own identity or what you're really looking for in a collaborator. Donating time, securing free space for performance, throwing parties to raise money, asking for donations from family and friends, and selling T-shirts or cookies are all time-honored methods to secure the resources to produce at this level — these are methods that don't depend on engaging with the complex structures of nonprofit fund-raising. Established theaters can invest in the development of young artists by sharing their resources. They can give space, lend out equipment, provide production management support, advertise shows, have a late-night series specifically for beginners, or consider redesigning internships to include practice producing."

For any playwright trying to figure out how to get their work produced, please consider reading further Rebecca Novick's pro-active take on the process by clickng the post's title. You'll be glad you did.

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