What plays are featured?

I was just checking out Ilana’s segment on the round table discusion
(http://goo.gl/IxeIU — about 30 minutes in) and it made me really
think about mission statements. That was talked about by a lot of the
other speakers, but we all know Ilana, so lets watch her, ok?

I had always thought about mission statements as helping the audiences
understand what type of theatre they would see from a company, but I
had never thought about it as limiting the types of shows a company
can choose from to perform. I have been working on creating a mission
statement for my theatre management class and this made me think about
how broad or specific it needs to be. Do I only want to do one type
of play? What does the area need? Do I want it to be broad so I can
choose from anything?

I started looking at some of the mission statements for company’s I
have been interested in contacting for work opportunities with this
lens and realizing many of them wouldn’t be performing the types of
the theatre I want to make. It is not within their mission. I want to
work with new playwrights. I want to still find influence from classic
texts. I want to explore locations.

I found Brave New World Rep, which is based in Brooklyn, and they
conquer all of this in their mission statement:

“Brave New World Repertory Theatre is a company of Brooklyn-based
theatre professionals dedicated to creating dynamic productions of
classic plays, as well as new works by Brooklyn writers. The company
performs in unique and historic Brooklyn venues, reaching out to
under-served audiences to promote a love of theatre.”

I got really excited by this statement, but then took a look at their
performance history. Very few of their work with new works were actual
productions. There are lists and lists of readings, but not ‘dynamic
productions’ of these new plays. There are readings of Charles Mee,
Lynn Nottage, etc but not full shows. What a let down! I was so
excited by the mission statement but disappointed that it was not
really clear as to what was put in to practice. Just because new works
was listed second, I wouldn’t assume that meant it was not focused on
in productions.

So, these mission statements are far more important than I had
realized. Because if they aren’t clear, people will feel let down.
Like me.

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.