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New Works GPS: Navigating the Road Toward the Future of Musical Theatre

October 17, 2008 5:30 - October 19, 2008 9:00 pm

NEW YORK CITY, NY THE WESTIN NEW YORK HOTEL - TIMES SQUARE

National Alliance for Musical Theatre is very excited to announce its Fall 2008 Conference, New Works GPS: Navigating the Challenges and Opportunities on the Road to the Future of Musical Theatre, at The Westin New York Hotel in New York City’s Times Square.

This Conference will focus on the issues of building an audience for new work through marketing, branding, seasonal programming, and audience engagement. We will also look at some of the challenges inherent in developing new musicals.

We look forward to welcoming you to NEW YORK CITY in October!

WHO SHOULD ATTEND THE CONFERENCE?

Executive management, artistic directors, new works developers, marketing directors and Board members. Hear first-hand from your colleagues about the rewards and pitfalls of producing new musicals, share success stories about marketing and branding “unknown” works, brainstorm about developing an audience with a taste for new flavors, insight into industry issues, opportunities to network with other musical theatre producers and developers, and a chance to spend a weekend in America’s theatre capital, New York City! NAMT conferences are for NAMT members and invited guests only.

 

Agenda

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 17
5:30 pm –
7:30 pm
Kick-Off Cocktail Party
Sponsored by Theatrical Rights Woldwide
Houndstooth Pub, 520 8th Avenue – downstairsCatch up with your colleagues and meet new ones over drinks and hors d’oeuvres.
Evening Open EveningSuggested activities:The Broadway producers of 13: A New Musical (developed at NAMT member theaters Goodspeed Musicals and Center Theatre Group) have generously offered NAMT members a discount on tickets during the Fall Conference, with tickets priced at $46.50, $56.50 and $66.50.Click here to order your tickets online, or use the code13NAFMT at Telecharge by phone or the Jacobs Theater box office.NAMT Member The York Theatre Company has generously offered a 25% discount on tickets to the critically-acclaimed Enter Laughing during the Fall Conference. Click here to purchase tickets online, or call 212-935-5820, and use code NAMT.The producers of the 2007 Tony-Winning Best Musical Spring Awakening have generously offered $65-$75 discounted tickets (normally $122). Click here to purchase tickets online or call 212-947-8844 and use codeSAEX8SP.For discounts to other Broadway and Off-Broadway productions, please check outwww.Broadwaybox.com.
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 18
8:30 am –
9:30 am
Registration
Continental Breakfast
Sponsored by The Muny
Ambassador Foyer
9:30 am –
9:45 am
Welcome Remarks + NAMT Announcements
Denny Reagan, President
Kathy Evans, Executive Director
Ambassador II
9:45 am – 10:45 am 30-Second Success Stories
Ambassador IIIn this energetic, fast-paced session, a representative from each organization has 30 seconds to introduce him/herself and other staff members in attendance, and announce any particular successes from the past season or exciting upcoming projects.
10:45 am –
11:30 am
Keynote Conversation: Jeanine Tesori
Ambassador IIMike Isaacson (Fox Theatre) interviews Jeanine Tesori, Tony-nominated composer of Caroline, or Change, Violet, Thoroughly Modern Millie and the upcoming Shrek.
11:30 am –
12:00 noon
Networking Coffee Break
Sponsored by Broadway/LA – A Nederlander Presentation
Ambassador Foyer
12:00 noon – 12:45 pm Mapping Your Destination: Programming a Balanced Season
Ambassador IIModerated by Mark Sylvester (Walnut Street Theatre)
With Harriett Guin-Kittner (Goodspeed Musicals), Steven Peterson (Maine State Music Theatre) and Phil Santora (TheatreWorks).Institutional leaders talk about choices and challenges in planning a season mixing both new or lesser-known work and classics.  What are and what should be an organization’s goals?  Who are you serving – yourselves, artists, audiences, critics, all of the above?  How do you marry artistic and financial goals?
12:45 pm –
2:15 pm
Lunch
Sponsored by Dallas Summer Musicals and East of Doheny
Ambassador III
2:30 pm –
3:30 pm
What Are the Challenges of Presenting New or Lesser-Known Works?
Ambassador IIModerated by Wayne Bryan (Music Theatre of Wichita)
With David Armstrong (The 5th Avenue Theatre), James Morgan (The York Theatre Company) and Steve Stettler (Weston Playhouse).Producing a new musical can be a huge undertaking, especially for an organization that has typically produced classics.  What are the additional challenges and costs and how can you plan for them?
3:30 pm –
4:30 pm
Road Signs: Branding, Marketing and Defining the New Works Experience for Your Organization and Audience
Ambassador IIModerated by Kent Nicholson (TheatreWorks), with Barbara Butts (American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University), Scott Eckern (California Musical Theatre)What is our “product?”  Is it the organization, the individual show, a star actor?  How do we define “new?”  Is it a world premiere, or simply something your audience isn’t familiar with?  How do we sell new work so that audiences are willing to take risks with us?  How do we engage the audience and make the unfamiliar approachable?
4:30 pm –
5:30 pm
Breakout Sessions: Further Discussion
Ambassador I, II and IIIThe day’s moderators will lead discussions on the day’s topics, to allow for feedback and exchanging of ideas in a more intimate setting.
Evening Open EveningSuggested activities:The Broadway producers of 13: A New Musical (developed at NAMT member theaters Goodspeed Musicals and Center Theatre Group) have generously offered NAMT members a discount on tickets during the Fall Conference, with tickets priced at $46.50, $56.50 and $66.50.Click here to order your tickets online, or use the code13NAFMT at Telecharge by phone or the Jacobs Theater box office.NAMT Member The York Theatre Company has generously offered a 25% discount on tickets to the critically-acclaimed Enter Laughing during the Fall Conference. Click here to purchase tickets online, or call 212-935-5820, and use code NAMT.The producers of the 2007 Tony-Winning Best Musical Spring Awakening have generously offered $65-$75 discounted tickets (normally $122). Click here to purchase tickets online or call 212-947-8844 and use codeSAEX8SP.For discounts to other Broadway and Off-Broadway productions, please check outwww.Broadwaybox.com.
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 19
10:00 am – 11:00 am Toll Road Ahead: Funding New Works
Ambassador IIModerated by Nancy Gibbs (321 Theatrical Management)
With Randy Adams (Junkyard Dog Productions), Keith Cromwell (Red Mountain Theatre Company), and Robb Hunt (The Village Theatre).Does raising money for new or lesser-known works present additional challenges? How do you get backers to invest in an unknown product? Are there fundraising benefits to doing new works?
   
11:00 am – 12:00 pm Rough Road Ahead: Weathering Tough Times
Amabssador IIModerated by Sean Cercone (Carousel Dinner Theatre)
With Bradford Kenney (Oqunquit Playhouse) and Louis G. Spisto (The Old Globe).What do you do when times are tough? How do you cope with a lack of funding and a sagging economy? We’ll discuss positive ways to get through the storm into clear skies!
12:00 noon – 1:15 pm Lunch
Sponsored by 5th Avenue Theatre and American Musical Theatre of San Jose
Ambassador III
1:15 pm –
2:00 pm
Mapping Your Route with the Artists
Ambassador IIModerated by Daniella Topol (The Lark Play Development Center)
With Rick Boynton (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre), Joe DiPietro (Librettist and Lyricist of All Shook Up,I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change, and O.Henry’s Lovers –Festival 1998), Kevin Moore (The Human Race Theatre Company), Heather Schmucker (American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University).Dos and Don’ts of discussing the production plan with artists and setting expectations and goals with writers and directors early in the process.
2:00 pm –
3:00 pm
Festival of New Musicals Finalists
Moderated by Branden Huldeen (NAMT New Works Director), Kevin Moore (Human Race Theatre) and Victoria Bussert (Baldwin Wallace College), with the Festival Committee
Ambassador IIGet a sneak peek and the inside story on the selection process for the shows you’ll be seeing over the next two days at the 20th Annual Festival for New Musicals.
3:00 pm –
4:00 pm
Targeted Networking
Connect with other organizations with structures or programs similar to your own, or learn about a particular sub-set of NAMT’s varied membership in these targeted networking groups.Trans-National Market Position Enhancement – Producing Abroad
Moderated by Chris Grady (Musical Theatre Matters:UK) and Arianna Knapp (SenovvA, Inc.)
Ambassador IA discussion of co-producing between US and International entities, led by NAMT members who have “crossed the pond” in both directions, developing new American musicals at the Edinburgh Fringe and elsewhere in Britain, and bringing new musicals from the UK to to the States. Explore the potential for a home-team playing away and thereby being seen to position themselves higher up the food chain than might happen if they just play at home; the benefit of international press; a sense of the “exotic;” the chance to return home with enhanced reputation; and of course the chance to reach a wider audience abroad.The National High School Musical Theatre Awards
Moderated by Van Kaplan (Pittsburgh CLO), Susan Lee (Nederlander Organization),  Kiesha Lalama-White (Education Director, Pittsburgh CLO) and Lisa E. Cooney (Director of Education, Paper Mill Playhouse)
Ambassador II

Learn all about this exciting new National Awards Program which will take place in June on the stage of  Broadway’s Palace Theater.  This meeting will include criteria for participation in the program and some nuts and bolts information for those who currently have High School Awards programs and for those who would like to get started.Professional Theatre in an Educational Setting
Moderated by Barbara Butts (American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University) and Tim Threlfall (Brigham Young University)
Ambassador IIILearn about navigating the theatrical unions, payroll and per diem on a university system, working with agents, developing a relationship with the media, protecting students and guest artists, and tapping into the larger university system for the success of your project.
6:00 pm –
9:00 pm
A Toast to 20!
A Concert to Benefit NAMT and Celebrate the 20th Annual Festival of New Musicals