Since the site went live, it seems to have become quite popular – in March 08 it was Google rank No 3 – after Amazon’s review of my mate Chris Baldwin’s book on Collaborative Theatre, and a link to the Canada National Arts Centre. This is rather flattering, but more down to the name than the content, I suspect. Since then – July – it has now at No1; with views from around the world. However, like Chris and the Canadian team, I am trying to create a resource that is of practical use in making theatre, particularly theatre which may deviate from the traditional, text/end stage/dark auditorium / tell them how it is, model.
The premise that informs the site is that drama and theatre are not the same, though they may overlap. Drama is centred in a set of representations; the act of theatre is a more or less ritualised activity, that involves either a passive or active interaction between a performance and spectator/participants. Creating theatre, therefore, becomes an act of stage management – both in the sense of direction, and in the more modern sense of managing the activity. There may be a hint of my background as a tutor in stage management here – to quote in a different context, “He would say that wouldn’t he?”
The link in the blogroll to the Learning Zone takes you through to the site’s Moodle access. Here you will find courses and resources I’ve been using at Rose Bruford College. At present these include a second-year course in theatre industry; and a discussion group for stage managers about Cultural Theory. More material is being added all the time, and this is the main repository for both practical and more philosophic material. I had thought that I’dd migrate material from the learning site to the main site, but I’m coming to the conclusion that actually, the blog is a place to try ideas which eventually become teaching resources.
Taken all together, I’m trying to create a more postmodern approach to theatre creation that is organic; rooted in praxis; and that recognises modes both of production and of reception (consumption) of meanings: whether intended, unexpected but welcomed, or completely accidental.
After a couple of serious crashes, much of this material has been recovered from archive files, and posted into creatingtheatre.net.
After my retirement in 2011, I eventually wound down my moodle site I’d been using with students, and brought some of that material into the main site. Creatingtheatre.com disappeared into the ether; and at one point it looked like .net was going the same way. After a couple of days’ work, I found a backup from 2015, which has allowed a partial recovery. A few files have gone astray, and I need to do more work in uploading images and my video collection.
The moral? Backup frequently!