So, how do you rethink an intensive in-person artists’ conference for creative and professional development in the middle of a pandemic? You change the name, invite the best creative thinkers you know, and take it digital!
Maybe you used to know this program as C1 PlayLab Bootcamp, but allow us to take a moment to introduce you to something new…
online convenings for civic-minded theatre artists
a C1 PlayLab Open Circuit program
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This season, Company One is building on the legacy of the Bootcamp program by bringing community together at the intersection of art and social change. But instead of a hot three days sorting the nuts and bolts of making new plays, we’re zooming out a bit to take stock of where we are in Our Pandemic Year.
The theatre industry is decimated. Long-hoped-for projects have been shelved. Collaborators in this human art can only be reached through a screen. Whether you’re a person who made all, some, or none of your living from the theatre, we’re all joined by a collective grief for our field, and perhaps for our own artmaking. I’ve heard from countless colleagues across the country about the despair they feel, the loved ones they’ve lost, the professional and personal sacrifices they’ve made, and how far away they are from their own creative spirit. We are a field in mourning.
And yet, we are also a field that is, in certain sectors, energized by the cracks in the walls of white supremacy culture. Many of us look to the civil rights uprisings this summer, and more specifically to the demands issued by We See You White American Theatre, and we peep light shining through those cracks. There is hope that this change will stick — not just hope, but action. What are each of us doing to dismantle the systems of power that have centered white stories and artists for too long? How does our artistry meet this demand? Where is the sledgehammer and can I crack this wall any faster?
And so: Field Work. This is part of Company One’s answer to these questions. We’ve brought together innovative, dynamic thought leaders from Boston and around the country to lead us in a consideration of our power as artists, and the care we must take to remain ready for whatever comes next. From story circles, to self love, to civic action, Field Work’s guest artists are dropping knowledge through a mix of live and pre-recorded sessions because: zoom fatigue is real, and no one’s socially isolated life has time for a tightly packed multi-day conference as we did in the Before Times. We know your lives are complicated and you may be juggling front line jobs, online school, long distance care for aging parents, health issues, and many more challenges. And by keeping Field Work’s pre-recorded content available for viewing through May 30, 2021, we’re giving you more space to take full advantage of the programming.
We strongly hope all registrants will attend all live sessions. In past years, the annual Bootcamp community has turned into powerful networks of collaborators, long after the sessions end. So even though we’re online instead of face to face, the Company One team is creating opportunities for attendees to truly connect with one another.
If you have any questions about programming content, schedules, or registration, please reach out using the contact form on this website.
Yours in Pandemic,
Ilana M Brownstein
Director of New Work