How do I get a good producer for my show?

Convener(s): Sophie Woolley         

Participants: Lisa Wolfe, Angela Clerkin, Amy Howard, Catherine Hoffman, Annette

Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:

Sophie wrote and performed a solo show, went on tour with it and had sell out shows in London at Purcell Room and Soho Theatre. The show’s ACE funding has run out but she is still touring it. She is producing it herself and has been invited to take it to Canada (and looking to take it to New York where we potentially have some interest from backers) but she doesn’t have time to do everything and I’m working on a new show. She’s been told it’s hard to find good producers. She wants to get a longer London run for the show too

Suggestions and comments:

  • Speak to Jo Hemmant at ACE
  • Get producers down to see the work in progress
  • We don’t know how to find producers in first place to invite them
  • There is a producers forum in London but this is a network for producers themselves rather than a network people can use to try and recruit a producer for their shows
  • Build good relations with venues assists expanding the show’s run and finding producers
  • Lyric Hammersmith are doing a Lyric Firsts programme and they invite producers to see developing work in progress
  • Fuel Theatre a good place to look for producers, some sort of hub in Brighton as well?
  • No reason a show can’t return to London again after doing a few dates there already
  • People doing solo shows can end up feeling like they do everything when they are the writer, actor and producers and tour booker – it comes to a point when you need help!
  • Maybe some shows need a tour booker rather than a producer
  • There don’t seem to be many freelance producers out there
  • Producers have to take on lots of different jobs to keep going
  • Producing is a precarious job, they have to be real risk takers as part of role is to raise money and if you can’t get backing/funding then the producer don’t get paid. Many producers seek relative safety in salaried ‘in-house’ producer jobs