My Renewed Promise to New Audiences - and Myself
Not surprisingly, the last few months caused a big change in my priorities, specifically regarding work*. I could not be happier with with being part of 24th Street Theatre Communications & Audience Development, plus coming full circle back to being a Teaching Artist , now of Online Content at Center Theatre Group's Student Ambassador Program. I also love teaching workshops in outreach/audience development techniques.
I decided in 2010 to create a job intended to bridge the gaps between art I love and potential audiences the artists aren't reaching. It was a unique path at the time to use this "new" thing called social media, now it is just one of my many tools. To gain credibility and make a living, I took some work that didn't directly aligned with my goals. That's over now.
Now, if any opportunity does not involve finding and nurturing lasting new audiences for the art in which I believe, then it is not an opportunity for me. Since 24th Street already fulfills that goal directly for a high quality family theater, my own creative pursuits aim to find new paths to success. I will challenge all assumptions about audiences and find collaborators willing to take great risk for potentially great return. And we will learn. And we will share our findings on this site.
You'll hear shortly about The Lemon Lounge, an audience development project centered around the 2014 Hollywood Fringe Festival (produced with Bitter Lemons, not with the Fringe Festival itself.). All our decisions are based on one question: Does this
help new audiences in actually getting to see a show, taking a risk on a new artist or art form? If the answer is yes, then we develop the idea. If no, we drop it. The producing team is extraordinary and kept the ball rolling while I focused on having my first child. They are Peppur Chambers, Sara Fenton and Lemuel Thornton III. Colin, Enci and Phil from Bitter Lemons have given their blessing and will certainly become key advisers and partners as we experiment with and nurture this idea: a live arts show combined with pre-recorded segments to curate experiences for new audiences by speaking directly with them.
More on that next week. And a much larger project is also in the works, but I won't have details for a few more months there.
In the meantime, I look forward to this clearer focus.