If you’ve just recently discovered Theatre Inspiration: welcome! I hope what I’m writing will be useful to you.
Unlike most blogs, in which each post stands alone, Theatre Inspiration is more linear and inter-connected, so it can be helpful to understand the ideas that have already been discussed in order to fully appreciate the new material.
To help you out with catching up, I will briefly summarize the argument, and provide links to the pertinent material for further reading.
- In the late 19th century, a group of businessmen formed the Theatrical Syndicate, and they wrested control of theater touring away from the actor-managers and stock companies of the time. The result was that artists, including stars, became their employees and casting was centralized in New York City. This remains the case today.
- I believe that artists need to be back in charge of the system.
- This means forming an artist-led resident company in which the artists:
- purchase shares in the company so as to have skin in the game
- are not specialists but possess multiple abilities including the ability to extend the living (i.e., the income) of the company
- work within a for-profit contract that is not unionized (because the artists are owners, not employees)
- Company members develop a business model that is sustainable and reflects their lifestyle values