Why Theatre is the Most Collaborative Art-form
Curtain Call’s founders on the importance of collaboration in theatre, and how it motivated them to start a company dedicated to connecting everyone who works in the industry.
Although the Covid-19 pandemic has brought the creative industries to their knees, it must be said that the theatre community is like no other – it brings people together in a way that no other business or industry can. Pre-Covid, when you walked in the door for the first day of rehearsal, you were instantly a part of a new family. Everyone in the room strived for the same thing – to create art and tell a story…something unique and memorable.
This hasn’t changed in the virtual world at all. As Shakespeare famously said “All the world’s a stage…” Not a truer word spoken in light of where we find ourselves.
For some, the journey starts long before rehearsals though. From an idea, a script is written (no mean feat in itself), and then cautiously presented to others. The script may go through several iterations, involving rewrites, workshops, test readings, possibly even an online performance along the journey to a final working piece.
Creatives are getting more and more…well…creative when it comes to what they can achieve with a digital production. Each designer adds an aesthetic layer that nuances the script, and then talent who get through casting calls become the ‘players’ of that story.
The analogy of an iceberg is not out of place when it comes to describing the full collaborative team behind a production – what you see online or on stage is really just the tip of it. The length of time that the audience spends watching the production is similarly analogous to the amount of time put into the creative and technical process that precedes it.
Theatre, in all its forms and iterations, creates some of the strongest bonds in a workplace. It is the ephemeral nature of theatre that makes the connections within company members so strong. If you know that your time is limited on a production, you make sure that every day is a day you’re learning something – whether you are the automation operator, a member of cast, or part of the stage management team.
Whether you work in theatre or simply take in a play every now and then, that darkened room (or now the Zoom call) can wash away the stresses of the day and be just the tonic you need.
We love that theatre has everything, and although we can’t go to physically watch the shows that we know and love, many producers are now releasing content so that storytelling remains current and vital. Recent offerings have made us want to laugh out loud (One Man, Two Guvnors, National Theatre), cry (The Last Five Years, The New Palace), exalt in life (Amadeus, NT Live), dance in the aisles (42nd Street, Theatre Royal Drury Lane), exploring forgotten pieces (A Separate Peace, Curtain Call Remote Read series) identify with others in lockdown (‘Unprecedented’ series, Headlong), brush up on your history (Hamilton, Disney+)… You name it, theatre has it, and it’s always on tap.
And with each round of applause, each curtain call on every stage or screen we visit, we are reminded why we love theatre…because we belong there.
Theatre is our home.