Industry Pro Newsletter: New Leadership Model at Pennsylvania Shakes, New Auditions at Princeton

The SDC joins the myriad of lawsuits currently facing the producers of ‘Paradise Square’

By: Aug. 08, 2022

Our two Industry Trend stories this week take a look at a few of the different ways that people are trying to bring change to the theatre industry: first in reforming the work environment that has long been problematic, and second, the way Princeton is working on developing a new audition process to help bring more people into theatre in an educational environment. In the wider industry, we have a few more lawsuits, some more leadership transitions, and a look at the struggle to bring more access for disabled patrons to the UK.

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Industry Trends

Reforming the Physical and Emotional Risks of a Life in the Theater

Writing for the New York Times series The Reformation, theater critic Jesse Green writes about the various pressures and dangers that have been ever-present in the theater as a work environment, and what steps some companies are taking to eliminate them. Click here to read more...

Princeton Tries on a New Style of Audition

In an effort to transform the audition process to be more inclusive to the wider student body at Princeton, the Lewis Center for the Arts has introduced "Try On Theater Days" as their method of putting together a company of performers for upcoming shows. The three-day process is designed to be less intense and more open to first time participants to become involved in theater. Click here to read more...

Broadway/New York

Industry Pro Newsletter: New Leadership Model at Pennsylvania Shakes, New Auditions at Princeton

New Theater at David Geffen Hall to be Named Wu Tsai Theater

The name comes in recognition of a gift by Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai, whose $50 million gift was the catalyst that allowed the project to accelerate its timeline to completion. The gift will also launch an annual Wu Tsai Series which will celebrate the unique flexibility of the space with interdisciplinary works from diverse voices. Click here to read more...

Stage Directors and Choreographers Society Files Suit Against Paradise Square

The union filed suit for monies owed for royalties, health and pension contributions, and fees owed to both the Director Moisés Kaufman and Choreographer Bill T. Jones. SDC and Producer Bernard Abrams signed a stipulation in May to the amount owed, but the funds have yet to be paid. Click here to read more...

Sarah Lunnie Joins The Public as Senior Dramaturg

With a career that has been focused on the development of new plays - including Broadway productions such as What the Constitution Means to Me and Doll's House, Part 2, Lunnie will be joining the staff at The Public Theater as Senior Dramaturg. Click here to read more...


Industry Pro Newsletter: New Leadership Model at Pennsylvania Shakes, New Auditions at Princeton

Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival Announces New Dual Leadership Model

Casey Gallagher, who currently serves as the Managing Director and has worked at Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival in various capacities for the past 25 years, will be joined by Jason King Jones in the role of Artistic Director. The duo will replace Patrick Mulcahy, who announced his departure last year at the conclusion of this season. Click here to read more...

Barrington Stage Announces Alan Paul as Next Artistic Director

Paul is currently the Associate Artistic Director at Shakespeare Theatre Company in DC, and will succeed Julianne Boyd, who has been in the post for 27 years since co-founding the company. Paul will program the 2023 season. Click here to read more...

City of Orlando Sues Mad Cow Theatre Company

The suit alleges that Mad Cow removed theatrical equipment they were not entitled to when they vacated the space they were renting from the city. The company's lease on the space was terminated after a failure to pay rent and common area maintenance fees in excess of $500,000. The city plans to turn the space over to Orlando Fringe to operate an incubator for small, independent theatre companies. Click here to read more...

Triad Stage Appoints Interim Executive Director

While the theatre continues its search for a permanent leader, they have tapped Mitchell Sommers, the retired Executive Director of the Community Theater of Greensboro, to take the post as the theater resumes operations for the first time since the pandemic caused operations to pause. Sommers will not seek the permanent position, but instead hopes to mentor the new Executive Director in leading an arts non-profit in the community. Click here to read more...

Chris Jones: A Crisis of Leadership in Chicago Theater

The Chicago Tribune critic lays out the case that a crisis of leadership - from all corners - is what is plaguing Chicago theaters as they work to recover from the damage done by the pandemic. Click here to read more...


Arts Access Cards Delayed Two Years

Originally supposed to be rolled out in March of this year, the Arts Access Card was delayed due to rulings that the plan had not been sufficiently advised by the population it was designed to benefit. While the government has sought to appeal the ruling, the Arts Access Card is still being launched independently, but won't have pilot programs ready for at least two years. Click here to read more...

Performers Pitching Tents as Accomodation Costs at Edinburgh Skyrocket

Costs for accommodations near the Edinburgh Fringe Festival have skyrocketed in cost this year, pricing out many performers and comedians that are finding new ways to afford to attend and perform at the festival. Click here to read more...

Missed our last few newsletters?

August 1, 2022 - Finding Artistic Rest, Susan Booth Returns to the Goodman

New Diorama Theatre in the UK announced an interesting new season: they won't be producing any shows until 2023. While we have seen a slew of these kinds of announcements for financial reasons as companies reorganize, this was for a different reason. The company wanted to give their artists the opportunity to rest away from the pressures of constantly producing. They also raised funds for it like they would any other productions season, meaning that not only is everyone getting rest - they're being compensated so they can actually rest and dream about the next creative steps for the company. This story stands in contrast to another story in the newsletter today - allegations at Adventure Theatre Company in DC of unsafe work conditions, primarily resulting from an over-scheduled season. How can New Diorama's example be followed to give artists more time and space to be creative? Click here to read more...

July 25, 2022 - An Industry in Reform - Internships and a New Vision for Funding

A thought experiment from New Zealand examines a potentially new way to not only make arts funding more equitable, but transparent and with the opportunity for potential patrons to find projects to fund. This future thinking in the industry continues to extend throughout the United States as well, as companies continue to re-imagine what their entry level programs look like. However, the Paradise Square situation and the way in which Ken-Matt Martin was pushed out at Victory Gardens continue to highlight the long road ahead of an industry in reform. Click here to read more...

July 18, 2022 - Unions Get to Work, How EST Has Been Making Changes

Unions have been a central narrative of much of 2022 across many industries, and they took center stage last week in the performing arts industry as two Unions, Actors Equity and United Scenic Artists filed suit against the producers of Paradise Square. Across the river in New Jersey, the American Guild of Variety Artists added a new workplace to their list of members as the performers of Medieval Times voted to join. These stories, paired with other stories this week about institutional soul searching, are strongly demonstrative of the industry itself taking a large step forward in what feels like allowable practice, and towards what the new normal can be. Click here to read more

BroadwayWorld Resources

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Should SHUCKEDs Unusual Path to Broadway Be Replicated? Photo
Should SHUCKED's Unusual Path to Broadway Be Replicated?

When SHUCKED opened on Broadway last week, it marked the first time a musical that tried out in Utah made it to the big time. We hear a lot about the more mainstream regional tryout venues—La Jolla Playhouse, the Old Globe, 5th Avenue Theatre—but very few producers utilize lesser-known non-profits to try out their shows.

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