Back in March, I wrote Why only professionals? in response to a number of questions as to why we were only featuring companies on TheSceneShop.org who paid everyone. My answer was this:
With every new thing, there come questions. What about this? Why don’t you try that? For this website, one of the constants has been: Where are the rest of the theatres? Good question. Great question. We don’t know where they are, but we are going to find them and when we do… Wait. This isn’t a Liam Neeson movie. I know where they are. So does Sara Rae. And Omega Jones. And Colin Dowd. And Erin Shildmyer. We’ve worked with all of them.
That begs the question then of why aren’t they included, doesn’t it? To answer simply: We are building the following of the website. Seriously. Our target is to bring the whole of theatre to a wider audience. To that end, we are trying to build ourselves as a legitimate source of theatre news in the Greater St. Louis Metropolitan Region. That means our target isn’t the people who already know about the smaller theatres. Our targets are the people who think The Muny and The Fox are the only theatres in town.
(Random side-note… WordPress is awesome! I seriously love how easy it is to use.)
It is now almost nine months since I wrote that article. In that time, I’ve had my ups and downs with learning to handle the amount of information I sort through on a daily basis. I’m currently watching the websites of almost 50 companies in St. Louis—you should check out the venue page. I’m working out a system that will keep me busy but moving forward.
If you’ve been following along, you also know I was on Facebook Live last week to announce our 5-year, 5-phase expansion plan (if you saw the announcement, I’ve already made changes to the plan). In the video, I only announced Phase 1: adding Theatres for Young Audiences and Theatres by Young Artists to our coverage. The ultimate goal, as I’ve stated many times, is to eventually cover ALL St. Louis theatre. Anything that happens here related to theatre is going to be covered. We need this here.
“What is the full plan?” you ask. Excellent question.
Phase 1 -Beginning January 8, 2017, add TYAs to website. This endeavor should last up to three months. Anticipated completion date: March 31, 2017
Phase 2 – Beginning April 1, 2017, add theatres based in St. Charles and St. Clair Counties to website. Anticipated completion date: June 30, 2017
Phase 3 – Beginning July 1, 2017, add theatres based in St. Louis City and County to website. Anticipated completion date: December 31, 2017
Phase 4 – Beginning January 8, 2018, add theatres based in Clinton, Franklin, Jefferson, Monroe, Madison, Warren, Lewis, Lincoln, and Jersey Counties to website. Anticipated completion date: August 31, 2018
Phase 5 – Beginning September 1, 2018, add theatres at the high school level and whatever else exists to website. Anticipated completion date: December 31, 2020.
There you have it. The plan. Of course, all plans can and often do change. Things may happen faster, they may happen slower. You could help things happen faster… If a company were to send their logo to firstname.lastname@example.org and commit to sending along their show information, I would be more than happy to start adding their info to our calendar. That would be their decision and I have nothing to do with whether they follow through or not.
Sean Michael is a local actor and director, founder of The Scene Shop, and executive director of Tesseract Theatre. He has been seen on stages from St. Charles to Grand Center. See what’s next for him on his website.
This is an official announcement from TheSceneShop.org, your backstage tour of the St. Louis theatre scene.