View single post by frogfall
 Posted: Sun Dec 27th, 2009 02:58 pm
PM Quote Reply Full Topic

Joined: Fri Dec 25th, 2009
Location: Manchester ____, United Kingdom
Posts: 14
Hi David,

Thanks for your reply - and I appreciate that you are not having a go at me ;-)

I don’t really want to get too embroiled in this – as I said I have no connection with them. However, I do know that they are not the spawn of the devil. Their organisation has even had to go through the rigours of Arts Council assessment.
In fact I don’t particularly want to “defend” them, as such, as I don’t think there is anything there than needs defending.  I do think you are right, though, that the details of the process are not obvious from the website – I’m only aware of them through casual contact with people who have been involved in previous seasons.
Plus I have not looked at this years rules and conditions in fine detail. I know that they are limiting production to 10 plays next summer, which may mean that they can take onboard more of the up-front venue costs.
Interestingly, I co-wrote a show for the Manchester “Not Part Of” festival, last July, in which we didn’t have to pay anything towards the festival, or towards the cost of our venue (a fully appointed 100 seater studio theatre on the Manchester University campus), plus we also received a portion of the ticket sales.  However, even with all the actors, and director, giving their time and skills for free, we still just about broke even – so the overall economics were little different to those experienced by  companies in 24:7.
Actually, 24:7 producers are perfectly at liberty to ask their actors, director, technician or whoever else is involved, for financial contributions.  Indeed, some productions are very much consortia based.  These are all “profit share” companies – sometimes more accurately known as “loss share”.  Everyone is in it together.
Also, the point of the selection process is to make sure that the festival is NOT just about who can afford to fund a production.  Normal fringes are like that – the element of selection was introduced precisely to add some quality control.
And the quality can be very high – which is why the artistic directors of major professional theatres in the region (such as Bolton Octagon and The Library) come along to see the plays, and select those that they would like to bring back for further runs at their own venues.

Last edited on Sun Dec 27th, 2009 02:59 pm by frogfall