New York is the home to many incredible things. Baseball, Hot dogs, insane amounts of standstill traffic; but most precious of all to me is our sparkling and special Broadway. They say you haven’t made it in this game till you have been on Broadway, which is an idea I completely abide. Now, New York has placated the rise of some of Western cinema’s greatest directors. Be it Spike Lee, Woody Allen, or Martin Scorcese, there is something so deeply New Yorkean about all their films. Apart from their shared heritage, there is another thing that links these three men, and that is how they kindled their love of film and performance, which was through the theatre. As young men, their families did not have the money to go to Broadway, so they would go to block productions of some of the most prestigious plays. This passage will aim to breakdown and enlighten you on how you too can join this beautiful expression.
Obtain the Correct Permits
This may not sound too exciting, but first, you must get the right permits from the correct authorities. So, in order to have any business in New York, you will need to have both a local and state license, and a certificate of occupancy, or a CO. Now, though this may not seem particularly exciting you must be notified of the possible repercussions in New York. Firstly, it is highly likely that you will get shut down by the authorities. Your company will also become open to lawsuits, so not only will you be shut down, but up to your eyeballs in lawyer fees. So, though it may seem boring please please please invest in the proper permits.
Build a Good Reputation
Now, this good reputation will not only come from your performance on the stage but your theatre’s performance of it too. Though New York is famous for its rats, try and have your theatre invest in some pest control, be it PositivePest of upstate or a mid-town alternative. Just get the job done. Once your theatre is recognized as a clean and safe environment the customers will start flooding through the doors. A good reputation is something that is priceless for any budding business. It is extremely hard to gain and easy to lose, so please try and stay safe.
Find Your Target Audience
Finally, you must remember that any theatre can show a hundred average plays, but so few can show a dozen good plays. So, as a production company, you need to have a few plays that can truly define you. The pros of this approach are that it leads to your theatre company gaining an identity. If your theatre also produces plays of a similar genre, then you will be able to rehire talent, be it the actors, directors or stage designers. This familiarity with your crew will allow you to place trust in your crew meaning that you will not need to have such a hands-on approach. Familiarity with your audience will also lead to many returning out of loyalty to your production and crew.
I hope that this passage has simplified and inspired you to try and take on the challenge of starting your own theatre company. If you can go through the legal routes and find a loyal customer base your theatre can be a success.