Last blog we talked about some of the serious challenges of self-producing a theater run of your one-person show. So here’s the good part: the rewards and benefits.
Benefits of self-producing:
- Bringing your work to full fruition – you are taking a stand for your creativity, giving it its full life. It’s an incredible, deeply satisfying feeling. I remember standing backstage before the opening show of my 7-week run at LA’s Odyssey Theater with my crew gathered around me, feeling such overwhelming pride and love and fulfillment at what we created together and how we had brought my dream to life. I was crying with joy and accomplishment. Then I had to mop myself up and go perform!
- Getting Reviews – A good review can yield you a ‘pull quote’ that you can use in your promotions and marketing, both for your show and yourself as an actor. And you can use it forever. Ha! How handy to be able to describe yourself as “’one of the most refulgent actors of our time’ – LA Times.” Yeah, pretty cool (I wish I could, but I just made it up as an example!). Many publications will only review a show that has an official run, with some minimum number of performances or weeks. Mount a run, and you’ve got a good shot at getting some kind of pull quote. Here’s the blog where I cover what I know about getting press.
- Building your show’s resume – If you’ve got designs on taking your show beyond a theater run (perhaps a movie version, or the basis of a sitcom, or a public speaking tour), then a theater run can be a great step. It can demonstrate that your work has a track record, an established fan base, and has been ‘vetted’ by reviewers, as shown by the great pull quotes.
- Building an audience – I would say that every single forward step I’ve been able to take with my one-woman show stemmed directly from word of mouth, from someone seeing a performance and telling someone else. So more performances means more eyes seeing your show, means more mouths to talk you up!
Also, with all the ‘home-made’ entertainment (youtube videos, web series) out there these days, seems like it’s getting more and more helpful (almost required?) for a performer to come with her/his own fan base.
- The knowledge, incredible learning – about business, about being a leader, communicating, making things in the world, being a professional. There’s nothing like producing for that giving you that experience. You’re upping the stakes, taking a bold stand for your work, banking on yourself. Nice.