Mark Pritchard, 26 January 2014

(Sunday Session 4, Lion Group)

Initiator: Mark Pritchard [email protected]

We attempted a SWOT analysis in relation to this question.


We all know that apparent weaknesses can be strengths, and so on. Many things

appeared in one column and then argued their way into another. This is where we put

them - I invite you to move them around.


_Big shows are gaining commercial success

_Big shows outside of traditional form are gaining popular notoriety

_There are places and venues and festivals that encourage you to use non-theatre


_There are people working with a high level of responsiveness. We can respond


_There is a great spectrum of works happening

_It’s LIVE

_People want to be part of something, and theatre can do that

_Theatre has been popping up in the world under different guises

_We don’t have to do what television does

_We can embrace risk. We can do things that are out of control\


_It’s an analogue artform.

_Old etiquettes prevail


_Financially unviable

_It takes two years to write a play. This approach makes us slow

_Funding timelines are long

_Internate age story structure, multiplicity, and short attention spans confuse us

_Sometimes we don’t listen to our audience, we’re not honest with them. I blame the

fourth wall

_Our modern texts aren’t robust enough – if you heckle or tweet, they can’t handle it.

_We think we need so much stuff. We don’t.

_Sometimes we’re slow to adapt

_There’s not enough training/networks for artists to learn to use non-traditional

spaces. Everyone is inventing the wheel

_Do we know how to write for things that aren’t in the theatre?


_Diversifying audiences – let’s start

_There are so many people who dont go yet

_Show You Mine – a new openness

_Investment in process & artist development is happening a lot more at the moment

_High-profile cross-artform pieces are giving us good reference points

_Blogosphere open access long form discussions are happening online

_So much amateur theatre/grass roots entry level points for people to be making work

_Maybe we can start to see that EVERYONE is an artist, everyone in the audience is

creative and creating and a creator

_Site specific theatre is getting us out of expensive and muddy venues

_We’re not readily censored, and we’re so niche that we can say what we like. The

speakeasy mentality might just help us take more risk.

_DIY Resourcefulness is happening

_Exchange programs with professional artists doing exciting things exist

_You can leave a legacy in a community


_Lack of commercial appeal

_Commodification by the commercial sector

_Verisimilitude and TV Realism tropes create baggage that artists and audiences don’t

realise they’re bringing

_Thinking that the artist’s experience is more important than the audience’s

_Instrumentalism and Utilitarianism are pulling us down