Thank you to The Talisman Theatre in Kenilworth, who have produced a number of productions using ZOOM and posted them on YouTube. They have produced a few guidelines that they have found useful and are happy to share them – CLICK HERE
To listen to some of their productions – visit their YouTube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4IaHINyitK5tKWBKzgSzqg
ROD WILKINSON from THE TALISMAN writes;
Why would you consider ‘on-line’ plays:
– it keeps members and audiences involved and enables groups to perform plays and other artistic genres which you wouldn’t normally consider (plays of all lengths, monologues, poetry, National / local celebrations.- It is inclusive, any member or like minded group can do something
– it enables artistic members who are no longer able to ‘tread the boards’ for whatever reason, to continue to perform and be involved in an art they are passionate about.
– it is an opportunity to invite other groups (students, schools, specialist organisations, etc.) to perform, growing your audience base and introducing new members.
– develop a broader skill set with your technicians.
Channel selection / Technical Considerations
I have put these two categories together deliberately, they are inseparable. There are multiple social channels you can utilise to post your audio, or video recordings (e.g. YouTube, WhatsApp, TikTok, email distribution lists, etc.) your choice will depend on the expertise of your technical team and consideration of the social restrictions currently in force.
Your technical team will be able to advise you as to what is deliverable, both in terms of technical demands and sustainability over a period of time. The second point here is important, you can of course adapt the frequency of productions to meet changing circumstances.
Consider the duration of performances. You can of course vary them, but you may wish to aim for a consistent format, e.g. Full plays, oneact plays, or short plays. The limitations of government social rules may influence your choice.
It is likely you will not receive any payment for these productions. You may set up a donations mechanism (e.g. Just Giving), but there are no guarantees with this. You could consider a subscription channel, e.g. send in email to subscribers, but this may limit numbers and the inclusiveness of the recordings. There will be some small costs – in most cases performance fees will still be payable, but these will be at a far lower rate than normal.
The best route is to form a small group. This should include artistic input, technical input and communications input.
You can then mutually agree what is deliverable, without becoming a burden on any person, or group.
You may consider this new channel not to be a placeholder until normal theatre resumes, but possibly a permanent new activity. It could unlock artistic avenues which previously weren’t open to you.