Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Back to School

It's that time again. Time for the most momentous un-official non-holiday of the year - the first day back to school. While few recognize it, and even fewer are willing to admit it, there's a societal sea-change afoot once the kids go back - routines become more established, the frenetic pace of summer fun is replaced with the mindless drugery of home and work, and families spend a little less time together. Even if you don't have kids there's an adjustment to be made - no more dropping by your buddy's place for a beer at 9pm - the kids are already in bed.

So what does the return of mediocrity and subservitude mean for theatre? Well, for one thing it signals an end to the summer season, theatre's busiest time (at least in this country). While a few companies do spill their seasons over into September most are now gearing up for their fall seasons, a time that can be quite lucrative, or quite slow, depending on the venue. Most everyone will be looking forward to doing something, anything to cash in on the holiday season in December, as that's almost like having another month of summer's excess, if you can find the right project.

In other words, theatres will keep stumbling blindly forward, hurtling from one season to the next, hoping to catch and keep a lucky break.

At Grinder Productions we're taking a slightly more measured approach. Whilst acknowledging the potential that the next few months will bring we must also recognize the risks. If we bite off more than we can chew right now we'll just shoot ourselves in the foot for 2010, when the really big plans are set to begin.

We have but three shows this fall, and one of them is just a one-night affair. By pouring our energy into these projects (as well as some work behind the scenes) I hope that we'll end 2009 on a high note - perhaps not wealthy but at least financially stable, and most importantly ready to make the most of the opportunities that lie ahead. With any luck, by the time the kids go back to school next year we'll be providing a lot of them (and their parents!) with some welcome relief from their boring daily routines.

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