Hello Everyone. It's Andie Arthur, Executive Director of the South Florida Theatre League, and I'm here with Off Stage Conversations, where I take a look at what's being talked about in the national and international theatre community. As always, I'm incredibly indebted to You Cott Mail and #2amt on twitter.
First though, a small plug -- The South Florida Theatre League administers the Playwright Development Program for Miami-Dade County's Department of Cultural Affairs. This program brings in a master playwright to teach up to four local playwrights as they develop new work over a two year period. This weekend the 2011-2013 program will end, culminating in the From Scratch Festival, with readings of four new plays at the Deering Estate. The reading of my play The Secret of the Biological Clock starts the day at noon and then is followed by readings of Flashing Lights by Edward G. Excaliber (at 2PM), Two Weekends by Susan Westfall (at 5PM) and The Cuban Spring (at 7PM). It's a great chance to see new work in progress by local playwrights!
Changes for the Helen Hayes Awards
Washington DC's annual awards show just went through an overhaul, spliting into two separate categories for larger and smaller theatres. Artistic directors seem to be happy. While TheatreWashington was hammering out the details, DC playwright Gwydion Suilebahn asked fellow artists what they would want the Helen Hayes to look like. Awards tend to bring the worst in us, but there's a lot of really interesting ideas in how people envision a better system.
The International Center for Women Playwrights announces the winners of their 50/50 Applause Award. This award is given to theatres that have at least 50% of their plays by female playwrights and that are not female playwright focused companies. The interesting thing to consider here is to consider how few local theatres would be eligible for this.
Evolving Gay Theatre
Eric Piepenburg writes for the New York Times about how the role of gay theatre has changed in the past few decades and the problems LGBT theatres face now that fare like Angels in America is mainstream.
Non-profit Quarterly writes on how other revenue streams shouldn't substitute for donations.
Staying Local in Seattle
Brenden Kiley writes for the Seattle Stranger on how actors have stopped rushing off to NYC and LA and are starting to be able to grow their careers at home. Seattle is at the exact opposite end of the country, but the story is very similar to what is happening here.