Ch01.Blog16 Why are you buying that ticket?

Ch01.Blog16 Why are you buying that ticket?

by Erica Chestnut

When I think about sustainability, I think of the following: Endurance. Growth. Using available resources. Keeping things simple and natural, maintaining an ability to move forward whilst remaining respectful of self, environment and others.

So let’s talk about the sustainability of theatre in this hub of theatrical excitement that is Melbourne.

I’ve mentioned before just how many Theatre Companies there are in this city. I’m not sure how many exactly, nor am I sure how many are producing works on a regular basis. Which means there are plenty of actors.

But is there enough of an audience?

Each Company no doubt primarily relies on friends and family to make up a majority of their audience, and if this is to be the case, how do the countless companies then find a way to get the ‘new’ audience (and keep that audience coming back, therefore allowing their work to remain sustainable)?

Here’s a thing I’ve noticed. It would seem to me that there are in fact, within every group of actors, someone who is part of a theatre company. And they all tell us WHAT they do, what their aim is in making theatre. But they aren’t telling us why. And they’re producing/creating/developing works that don’t seem to hit what it is they claim they are doing.

Why does a theatre company state that their aim is one thing, then produce a work that is exactly not that? It would be unfair to name names, but I encourage you ALL to consider this the next time you see a play, music performance or piece of art.

Why are they doing it? What are they standing for? Are you buying it?

I want to see work that’s relevant, provoking, thoughtful, interesting and above all TRUTHFUL. I don’t actually see a lot of this. And I believe it’s the key to maintaining solid actor-craft and sustainability for theatrical works.

I have seen some fantastic work in the last 12 months, but I’ve also seen a large amount of self-indulgent, produced-for-their-own-amusement, average work, with little social relevance or impact and almost no emotional truth. Remember that blog on Resistance?

What makes you buy the ticket, sit in the seat and enjoy the show?

I’d genuinely love to hear your answers – join the conversation on twitter #taosblog or on our Facebook page.

Ch01.Blog17 The artist will find a way

Ch01.Blog17 The artist will find a way

Ch01.Blog15 Time to make a change

Ch01.Blog15 Time to make a change