Opening Keynote Address 2:00 PM — 3:15 PM, May 8 2013
Don M. Randel will give the keynote address that will launch Opera Conference 2013 with a powerful articulation of the value of the arts. Randel is the former president of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, a musicologist and scholar, former president of the University of Chicago, and one of our field’s most eloquent spokespersons.
Harnessing the Power of Learning 3:30 PM — 5:00 PM, May 8 2013
Douglas McLennan, founder and editor of ArtsJournal and dynamic Opera Conference 2012 keynote speaker, returns to lead a participatory session that will demonstrate the power of crowd-sourced learning to inform and engage audiences at all levels of experience. His presentation will introduce the latest in open-source technology and distance learning
Thursday, May 9
Opera Out of Bounds in the Opera House 9:00 AM — 10:30 AM, May 9 2013
The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase 3:30 PM — 5:00 PM, May 9 2013
The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase is a biennial program offered as part of OPERA America’s continuing effort to foster promising opera artists. Working from a diverse list of American operas, emerging director-designer teams were asked to submit a production proposal including narrative, research images and/or design sketches. The finalists listed below received a stipend to create more complete renderings and models for their concept. Finalist teams will present their proposals and models during this special session. After the presentations, the creative teams will be available to answer questions and network with conference registrants.
Silent Night (Kevin Puts/Mark Campbell)
Director: George Cederquist
Set & Costume Designer: Marianna Csaszar
Lighting Designer: Sarah Hughey
Elmer Gantry (Robert Aldridge/Herschel Garfein)
Director: Stephanie Havey
Set Designer: Patrick Rizzotti
Costume Designer: Megan Spatz
Lighting Designer: Brandon Mitchell
The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny (Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht)
Director: Walker Lewis
Set Designer: David Meyer
Costume Designer: Grace Trimble
Susannah (Carlisle Floyd)
Director: Mo Zhou
Set Designer: Tim Brown
Costume Designer: Lisa Loen
Lighting Designer: Yi Zhao
Friday, May 10
Achieving Boundless Impact 9:00 AM — 10:45 AM, May 10 2013
Adaptive changes should be integral to the work of every organization. Learn from a wide variety of leaders from within and outside the arts, who have extended civic impact, built customer loyalty and explored the very nature of innovation itself. With these powerfully honed presentations, expand your thinking about what is possible for your company.
Saturday, May 11
Closing Keynote Address 9:00 AM — 10:30 AM, May 11 2013
The conference concludes with a closing breakfast and keynote address by San Francisco Opera General Director David Gockley, a dynamic leader of one of the nation’s most important companies. Gockley’s dedication to making opera relevant to the broadest possible public continues to expand the impact of the art form. Members will learn from his powerful ideas and join together to recognize the accomplishments of leaders in the field who are celebrating their 10th and 25th anniversaries.
A provocative blog post making one case for a National American Theater -
Magda Romanska posts a wide-ranging, historic, international perspective on American theater vs. national theater traditions. Here’s an excerpt, read the full post here:
“…. In the U.S., theatre’s function as a marker and maker of national identity has been mostly taken up by Hollywood …. In the popular imagination, theatre remains either a form of commercial entertainment or a function of private expression.Yet, with the increased balkanization of our social and linguistic sphere and the increased bifurcation of our political landscape, an all-inclusive, national theatre, because of its liveness and physical propinquity, can provide the kind of much-needed Socratic dialogue of sustained compromise that’s absent from our public spaces, both actual and virtual.
Without the heavy subsidies that made that dance possible for European theatres, American theatre institutions (by which I mean most – not all – regional theatres) have been confounded by their own contradictions. Freed from the responsibility to speak for the people, they have mostly dissolved into stratified corporate structures, whereas the vision of the artistic director has become the singular vision demanding to be supported by the state and its audiences. Without a history of heavy state funding of its performing arts, and thus, without a history of negotiating the relationship between its artistic interests and the state’s national interests, American theatre is caught in a cognitive loop, demanding, on the one hand, funding from the state and, on the other, the freedom to exist in opposition to the state, while simultaneously preserving the Romantic allure of the theatre artist as the spiritual leader and conscience of the nation. As a result, while aspiring to reconcile these mutually exclusive objectives vis-à-vis a free market economy, American theatre find itself suspended in a stratified corporate structure, whereas the theatre’s implicit mission is to be an extension of the voice and vision of its artistic director, who expects and demands the kind of support – financial and otherwise – of his voice and vision once afforded by the royal likes of Louis XIV.
The best example of this phenomenon is the recent short-lived outburst over Guthrie’s all-male, all-white season, so much at odds with its much-lauded explicit mission of cultural diversity, yet barefacedly demanding to be supported by its audiences and taxpayers. Since there is no tradition of national theatre as such, Guthrie’s government support comes without any implicit or explicit obligation to express the national identity and the voice of the people. Since the government funding is insufficient to bribe the artists into submission, there is no tacit agreement of any kind between the theater and the state. Thus, it’s only logical that the artistic director feels fully entitled to treat the theatre in his care as an extension and expression of his own white, male identity….”
Magda Romanska is an award-winning writer, theatre scholar, & dramaturg. A former exchange scholar at the Yale School of Drama & fellow at the Mellon School of Theatre & Performance Research at Harvard University, Romanska teachers courses in Theatre History, Theory, & Dramaturgy at Emerson College in Boston, MA. She is a research associate at Harvard University’s Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, a member of the Literary Managers & Dramaturgs of the Americas, & a recipient of the 2011 Aquila Polonica Article Prize & the 2010 Gerald Kahan Scholar’s Prize.
From February 20 – 22, 2013, Theatre Communications Group (TCG) will livestream sessions from their Audience (R)Evolution convening. Join the 150 theatre, arts & cultural professionals who are gathering in Philadelphia & explore successful audience engagement.
• learn from practitioners with track records of successful audience engagement;
• hear findings from TCG’s ongoing assessments & research of the field;
• explore current audience engagement & community development models in the field;
• hear from dynamic speakers; &
• ask questions & share successful strategies.
PLENARY SESSION: “Measuring the Impact of Audience Engagement Strategies”
Speakers: Brad Erickson, Theatre Bay Area and Tom Kaiden, Philadelphia Cultural Alliance.
3:30pm – 3:50pm
Town Hall Wrap-Up
Facilitator: Lisa Mount, Director, Artistic Logistics
3:50pm – 4:00pm
Closing Remarks, Teresa Eyring
Audience (R)Evolution is a multi-year program designed by TCG and funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation to study, promote and support successful audience engagement and community development models across the country. This new initiative encompasses four phases unfolding over three years: research and assessment; a convening; grant-making; and widespread dissemination of audience engagement models that work.
Opera America says: “Renée Fleming swears by Pilates while other singers are yoga devotees. Some opera directors won’t travel without their P90x DVDs. Most pianists won’t go near any form of exercise that could injure their hands. What is the best way to train your body to support your art and your health? How do you train mentally to perform at your peak? And how can you maintain a healthy mind and body when you are traveling nonstop or juggling a very busy schedule?
The challenges of staying sane and healthy while pursuing a career in opera are numerous. At this Making Connections session, a panel of experts will share their wisdom on how to stay grounded, fit and fulfilled on your path to success. Performance psychologist Dr. Noa Kageyama, Alexander Technique teacher Lori Schiff, and certified personal trainer and voice teacher Claudia Friedlander join yoga instructor and moderator Megan Young in a discussion that will explore how to create your own physical and mental routine for peak performance onstage and off.”
LIVESTREAM PANEL DISCUSSIONS: *Thursday January 10th – 9:30AM ET; *Saturday January 12th – 12 noon ET; *Sunday January 13 – 12 noon
Under the Radar at The Public Theater in New York City is an annual theater festival that spotlights international artists ranging from emerging talents to masters in the field. The festival is a wild mix of works by ensembles, solo artists, writers, and creators. The ultimate goal of UTR is to offer a crash course in theater that is exciting, independent, and experimental, created by some of the most dynamic artists working today.
3 events – details below – will be livestreamed on the open-source #NEWPLAY TV channel. Use the Twitter hashtags #UTR13 and #newplay to participate in conversation.
How will the global economic crisis and political change in the EU effect US/Europe cultural exchange? Join international curators, cultural officers, artists and thinkers for a round table discussion. (In association with Culturebot).
What does it mean to make socially conscious performance, often working working with non-artist communities? What are the aesthetic, political and practical challenges of making theater in community without making “community theater”? Or is that distinction no longer relevant? Join artists and curators and thinkers from multiple backgrounds for a discussion of this longstanding but newly vital field. (In association with Culturebot).
WATCH live at 2:30pm Eastern Time on Monday November 19, 2012
Formerly the Coming Up Taller Awards
The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities is pleased to present the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards to outstanding after-school and out-of-school programs that are transforming the lives of young people. Programs that receive the award exemplify how arts and humanities programs outside of the regular school day enrich the lives of young people throughout the country by teaching new skills, nurturing creativity, and building self-confidence. These programs offer high-quality and intensive instruction on weekends, afternoons, and summer vacations, providing a safe and productive space for young people in the hours when they are often the most vulnerable. Their carefully focused projects supplement in-school curricula with exposure to a wide variety of artistic and scholastic pursuits.
will be held Tuesday November 13 3-5pm Eastern Time – join in person or online! Online chat to follow!
Chamber Music America’s First Tuesdays workshop (“Internet for Musicians 201″) has been rescheduled for Tuesday, November 13, at Saint Peter’s Church in Manhattan, 3:00-5:00 p.m. Join vocalist/composer Carla Lynne Hall for an overview of Internet promotion, including branding and communication strategies. RSVP to attend in person.