ARIZONA THEATRE COMPANY DEVELOPING NEW CREATIVE ONLINE CONTENT TO STAY CONNECTED NOW AND AFTER PANDEMIC
Play Readings; Online Chats With Local, National Artists; Educational Experiences, More
The curtain may have come down early on Arizona Theatre Company’s (ATC) 2019/2020 season because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the creative juices haven’t stopped flowing. ATC is bringing education and engagement programs online through engaging digital classes and binge-worthy videos and podcasts.
“We are looking at the value and importance of being part of a collective experience now and pushing toward what we will be when we comeback in the fall,” said Managing Director Designee Geri Wright. “We are constantly thinking about and developing new products for the next five months, not just for ATC social posts but for really meaty video and artistic content and online experiences driven by an overarching theme promoting the concept that ‘You Are/I Am/ We Are’ Arizona Theatre Company.”
The company’s education program, ATCteen for students 13-19 years of age, has been adapted for the current situation and moved online, including:
• Weekly classes every Tuesday at 3 p.m. on topics including playwriting, acting, dance, production, design and more;
• Playreader’s Club every other week for students to choose a play to read with discussions. Playwrights may be involved on a regular basis;
• Private Coaching for students by professionals in a range of specialties;
• Improv Troupe for the ATCteen Improve to continue exploring and creating performances;
• Radio Drama Project for students to write, record and produce; and
• #ATC Create Anyway & Creative Challenges for students across the world to join in by creating and posting their own projects using the hashtag and offering creative challenges for students to think outside the box.
“In bringing our education initiatives online, we are excited to not only continue serving our current student population, but also to give our audience, patrons and friends the opportunity to learn alongside us and explore the art of theatre from home,” said ATC Director of Learning and Education Jasmine Roth.
General ATC content is being divided into four “rooms:”
• The Blackbox Roomfor play readings and online workshops of plays and musicals.
• The Green Roomfor conversations with national and local artists and friends.
• The Rehearsal Hallfor deeper conversations around plays, musicals and topics affecting the community, and
• The Classroom for educational, creative and informative content for all ages featuring directors, designers, playwrights, actors, technicians and producers.
Each “room” will be available on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and ATC’s own podcast and radio station, which is being developed. Video and podcast episodes will be released every Sunday beginning April 12. Daily content and updates will be found on Instagram and Facebook. Schedules and details can be found at www.arizonatheatre.org.
“Content is being developed quickly and creatively and we will push it out across all platforms and capabilities,” Wright said. “And, we’re very interested in gauging and listening to the response from our diverse communities as to what we are providing and what may be missing.”
Recognizing the pandemic’s widespread financial impact on both nonprofit and for-profit organizations and businesses, “we’re looking at everything, not just revenue for ATC, but that giving this year is more important than ever before to local businesses, charities or whoever our patrons support, including us,” Wright said.
“We are in unchartered territory on so many levels with this pandemic,” Wright said. “We know the health, safety and well-being of our friends, families and co-workers is the top priority, but we’re also trying to look beyond how we are adapting to the situation through a creative lens that brings not just joy and diversion but may also bring us all together at a time when being part of a collective community has never been so critical.”
For more information or to provide input and thoughts, visit www.arizonatheatre.org or, on Facebook, @ArizonaTheatreCompany.
About Arizona Theatre Company:
Under new leadership, and now celebrating its 53rd Season, Arizona Theatre Company is truly “The State Theatre.” Our company boasts the largest subscriber base of any performing arts organization in Arizona, with more than 130,000 people each year attending performances at the historic Temple of Music and Art in Tucson, and the elegant Herberger Theater Center in downtown Phoenix.
Each season of high quality productions reflects the rich variety of world theatre – from classic to contemporary plays, from musicals to new works – audiences enjoy the rich emotional experience and joy that can only be captured through live theatre. ATC is the preeminent professional theatre in the state of Arizona. Under the direction of Artistic Director Sean Daniels, Managing Director Billy Russo, and Managing Director Designee, Geri Wright, ATC operates in two cities – unlike any other League of Resident Theaters (LORT) company in the country.
ATC shares the passion of the theatre through a wide array of outreach programs, educational opportunities, access initiatives, and community events. With more than 800 Education & Engagement activities through the schools and summer programs, ATC focuses on teaching Arizona’s youth about the creative power of dramatic literature and how it can enrich their own lives in multiple ways
ATC reaches far beyond the metropolitan areas of Tucson and Phoenix, enriching the theatre learning experience for current and future audiences.