The world of theatre is ever-evolving. New technology, trends, and advancements happen consistently, making shows more dynamic than ever. If you want to stay on top of emerging trends in the industry, On The Stage presents a few we’ve noticed … and how to bring them into your program.

5 Emerging Trends in the Industry

An Emphasis on Diversity 

While this isn’t exactly a brand-new focus, theatres are more honed in on diversity and inclusion than ever before.

An emphasis on diversity looks like a lot of different things:

  • Telling the stories of marginalized people or stories of people we often don’t hear from in traditional media forms
  • Casting more people of color in productions – especially in leading roles originally created for white leads 
  • Bolstering marginalized creators – whether they are part of the LGBTQIA+ community, women, or people of color

Projection Design

Utilizing projection design has become a mainstay in big-budget showcases – it’s an integral part of the design as opposed to a nice occasional bonus. (Think Dear Evan Hansen and Anastasia.)  

Project design adds a new element to showcases  – you can add a set of characters, actual backdrops, historical context or even subtitles. Even better, projection design can save you a big chunk of change, as it can act as a stand-in for more cast members or an elaborate set piece.

Making Theatre a Community Event and Thus, More Accessible

If people can’t come to the theatre, theatre is now coming to the people! Avoiding the high overhead price of brick-and-mortar theatres, a lot of troupes are creating community events in the great outdoors

By offering community programming, ticket prices get reduced, allowing less people to get priced out of live theatre. Making the whole city your stage as opposed to one location brings in more audience members, breaking barriers and amplifying inclusion.

Embracing Social Media

If you’re on social media at all these days, chances are you’ve seen clips of popular Broadway shows or behind-the-scenes content from big-name theatre actors. 

Allowing your audiences a peek behind the curtain creates a bond between actors and audiences. It gives the show a more human element – all while creating more anticipation for the show. Staying on top of social media trends also lends itself to broadening your audience and creating a wider demographic. 

Tapping Young Creators 

Gone are the days of dismissing young creatives for not knowing enough or for not having enough experience – today we embrace the voices of young creators to bring new and fresh perspectives to the stage.

Even more, creators are often the actors or techies behind shows themselves. People in the theatre world are more multifaceted than ever – and we are happier than ever to utilize and bolster their talents!

How to Apply These Trends to Your Program

You may think technology upgrades and emerging trends are too hard to integrate into your program – not so! Here are a few simple ways to apply these trends to your theatre:

  • Be proactive about diversity – participate in outreach to groups representing actors of color to ensure you’re getting a diverse range of people to attend your auditions.
  • Consider whether or not race is pertinent to your story – if not, open up casting to all.
  • Educate yourself on racism and internal bias before rehearsals.
  • Avoid tokenism in your theatre and any content depicting stereotypes or racial caricatures. Your roles should be multi-dimensional.
  • For greater accessibility, team up with community partners to perform at venues around town or offer outdoor programming. 
  • Create both virtual and in-person programming to allow more people to see your work.
  • Create tiered pricing to ensure anyone who wants to see your content can. 
  • Utilizing a student marketing team – or a singular marketing rep – to stay on top of social media trends.
  • Post behind-the-scenes content and teasers to build anticipation for your show. 
  • Listen to your young cast and techies and encourage them to offer up ideas if you’re looking for new content.

Implementing new trends into your theatre can be simple – especially with a partner who can help. If you’re looking to elevate your theatrical experience, book a personalized demo with On The Stage now.

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