Theatre in the Real World: Create Your Own Company
Here is a group project that is a great complement to our last blog post, Theatre in the Real World: Theatre Company Profile. Your students have been introduced to various theatre companies, all with unique histories, facilities, and artistic goals. Now, they’re going to create their own theatre companies, specially tailored to their unique interests and personalities. It’s time to dream big!
This project can be purely researched and written, or you can have students present their plans to the rest of the class to give them the opportunity to practice their oral presentation skills. If your students choose to do a presentation, they will need to create an accompanying display board or PowerPoint slideshow.
1. Split up the class into small groups or partners.
2. Each group will create their own theatre company by completing the following requirements:
- What is your company called? Be sure to consider acronyms that might be associated with your company’s name. For example, Blue Umbrella Musicals is a fun name, but you might not be thrilled about the abbreviation customers use.
- Design a logo for your company. Include a sketch or digital rendering.
- Where is your company located? Why?
- What’s your company’s mission statement? A mission statement describes the reason why your company exists. It says what you do and for whom, and it can be as broad or as niche as you wish. For example, your company might decide to only produce musicals. Or, your company might decide to only produce modern rock musicals in outdoor venues that feature BIPOC performers and technicians under the age of 30. Perhaps your company will feature only new works by emerging playwrights. Your company might exist to provide opportunities and jobs for high school students. Maybe your company will produce shows entirely written and staffed by women, or only shows about baseball, or only shows performed in mime. It’s your company — you decide!
- Choose three shows for your opening season. Describe why they are great choices for your theatre company and how they relate to your mission statement.
- What sort of venue will your theatre company require? Choose three existing venues that would be great for your company to perform in. Include the name of the venue, at least one photo of each venue, and the venue’s seating capacity. (Don’t worry about the actual location of the venue; this is for inspiration purposes.)
3. Information must be presented in full sentences, with attention paid to spelling and grammar. For ease of reading, students should organize their information under appropriate headings.
4. If you wish, you may also have students include an oral presentation along with their written work. Oral presentations should be no longer than five minutes.
5. Students will complete and submit individual reflections (found in the giveaway below).
Extension Challenge: For an additional challenge, you can have students present an elevator pitch, imagining that you are a potential investor in their company. Groups will identify and describe their company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, and convince you to fund their opening season.
Click here for a free reflection and group work rubric.
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