New Beginnings - The Trainee Producer Edition.
My first week at The Other Room was the week of the Young Artists Festival, and I just remember thinking, on the first day, how incredibly well-named it is. The atmosphere that day, when everyone was gathered together in the space for the first time, was definitely festive. I was very lucky that for the 3 days I was around I was able to sit in on all of the wonderful talks that were planned, and spend some time in the rehearsal rooms, watching the new work unfold!
With YAF, what The Other Room have managed to do is establish a space where young creatives are able and encouraged to explore new things, to challenge each other, and to just be silly. It opened the floor to many enlightening and inspiring discussions about the industry, the creative process, and the art of making stuff. It was a place where those with many years of industry experience and those who are only just entering the industry, (and those in between!), were able to exchange experiences and envision how it is that we can each shape the growth of the theatre industry here in Cardiff. There was an encouraging sense of unity in the room, in that we were all fighting the same battle for a truly diverse and continually thriving Cardiff theatre scene, and arts industry in general.
The first talk of the week was lead by Bizzy, Dan and George, and was about setting up your own company. I love making my own work, but I do sometimes feel bedraggled and overwhelmed by the things that get in the way (namely: money). George told us of a conversation he once had that went something along the lines of:
“Why isn’t there a Cardiff Fringe? There should be a Cardiff Fringe.”
“Ok. Let’s do it, then.”
Yes! This is what I needed a little reminding of. The sheer power of deciding that you are going to do it. And figuring the rest out on the way, (even the hard days are important parts of the process!!). Each time that determination starts to fade because it all seems so huge and impossible just SHOUT OUT LOUD THAT YOU. ARE. NOT. GOING. TO. GIVE. UP. Grrrrr. We are a feisty breed.
However, I wasn’t just there to get all enthusiastic about creating content. I was also there to kind of do my job a little bit. So, George tasked me with some producery things, you know, guest lists, collaborating with him and Biz on creating a bizzare code-word the participants could use to get discount at Porter’s throughout the week. The usual stuff. #CrumplyBlender
It was an altogether whirlwind experience of meeting new people, learning a HECK of a lot and being very excited by the work that was being produced. Also, laughing too much. And this is only the beginning!