iPhones in the Theatre

Apart from the obvious – TURN THEM OFF – subtle, humorous and not so subtle prompts as the house-lights dim, and notwithstanding the current debate on whether or not audience members or reviewers should ‘live-tweet’ a show from #tweetseats, there are lots of opportunities to capture images as aides memoires to a particular theatre experience … and not just on the iPhone of course, but other pocket-friendly phones as well.

I snapped this one as I left the Roundhouse in Brisbane on the opening night of I Love You Bro’ from La Boite Theatre. It’s a terrific poster corridor not dissimilar to the one in the Bille Brown Studio for Queensland Theatre Company and the loooong walk down to Wharf 1 and 2 theatres at Sydney Theatre Co.

By the way, who else loves theatre posters?

You might be interested in some shots I’ve taken of theatres round the world.

And the other side of the business of iPhones in the theatre – some earlier posts on apps for iPhone toting actors (from Groundling)

Ready for some tweet-reviews?

Talk about leading the pack! Greenroom wrote about this last November. We thought we’d strut our stuff and republish our comments from back then as La Boite Theatre encourages its audiences to tweet their reviews of I Love You Bro’ opening this week at the Roundhouse. No tweeting during the show now, unless of course you sit in the back row and get permission first, as @h_suarez did for King Lear at QPAC recently. Hannah Suarez, incidentally, is the social networking savvy marketing director for The Brisbane Festival.
There’s been some swift (rather than considered) responses from the social networking crowd in the last 24 hours or so about whether or not tweeting during a show should be ‘allowed.’  This was sparked by queries from La Boite and Bell Shakespeare in Twitter and on Facebook. We smell marketing departments at work! 
In response, the FB crowd have said ‘No way,’ and, hardly surprisingly, the Twitter crew were more open-minded.  Always good to challenge received practice and the status quo in the arts though, isn’t it?
We can’t wait to see which theatre here will be the first either to allocate back rows or declare an ‘open-twitter’ performance for those who wish to tweet and carry on the conversation during a show – without disturbing the performers or rest of the audience of course. A passing phase maybe? Who would dare to predict …

29 November, 2009
Eurobeat: almost Eurovision opens at QPAC’s Lyric Theatre this week for a season through December 5.  QPAC is hosting a gathering before the opening performance on Wednesday.  They’re calling it Eurotweet and have invited a flock of ‘Twitterati’ who will get to tweet their thoughts before, during, and after what we hear is a very funny show – ‘don’t wear mascara to Eurobeat’ says their website.   The audience will also be using their mobile phones to vote the winners.  Could this be a first for Brisbane theatre?  Might it be a last?  Somehow, we think not … a monster has been unleased. Continue reading Ready for some tweet-reviews?

Flloyd Kennedy (Interview 3)

Image of Flloyd Kennedy

Brisbane has the right to a healthy layer of DIY theatre – partially supported and encouraged, venue or company based – in professional, independent companies that evolve.  People need to be empowered to work outside the prevalent bureaucratic funding model. My passion is theatre where performers do their thing – performers in an empty room – not big sets and costume stuff.  Then the audience brings its own life, energy and imagination to it; that’s the kind of theatre I love – that’s fringe.

I spoke a little while back with Flloyd Kennedy actor, blogger, voice-coach, theatre-maker and enthusiast.  She’s so committed to the importance of theatre-making that she (initially) single-handedly organised the inaugural one-day Bits Festival of fringe theatre held in Brisbane last November.  I was intrigued by the concept and keen to talk with Flloyd about what brought her to do such an extraordinary thing – creating a fringe festival event from scratch is hardly for the faint of heart, but then that’s not a label that would stick long to Flloyd.

… there is still not the opportunity here for audiences to experience new ideas or for rough, raw, experimental work to get a first showing. There’s still a missing layer.. Continue reading Flloyd Kennedy (Interview 3)

Theatre conference? You want to be in Cats or something?

This post was contributed by Xanthe Coward, a COE09 conference delegate. Many thanks also to Xanthe for her live-tweeting during the sessions. You can catchup with all the hashtagged contributions to the Twitter stream by searching for #coe09

Why are doing a theatre  conference? Why are you doing theatre? Do you want to be in Cats or  something?!

Last weekend Brisbane’s !Metro Arts played host to 100 independent theatre practitioners, including professional and emerging  playwrights, performers, directors, producers and promoters from all over Australia.  In what turned out to be a particularly conversational 3 day program !Metro Arts, in cooperation with Jute and Playlab, set about challenging the definition of what it is to be an artist in the independent theatre sector in Australia, and asked, “How will it – and you – survive?”  The question in the block-quote above was put to one of the delegates by a friend, and it seems to sum up the attitude of many of the broader population who aren’t aware of theatre – apart from the blockbuster musical –  or who don’t really understand how and where else this thing called theatre gets made.  Last weekend, however, pedestrians on Brisbane city’s Edward Street, as well as visitors to New Farm’s Powerhouse might have noticed that theatre is something that attracts an extremely eclectic crowd. Continue reading Theatre conference? You want to be in Cats or something?

Welcome to Greenroom

This is Greenroom, a one-stop aggregator, index or directory for Queensland professional and independent theatre. Like a greenroom, it is also a place to share opinion and news.

Thanks for stopping by; why don’t you have a look around while you’re here. This post will tell you how Greenroom works.

Continue reading Welcome to Greenroom

Talking theatre? Try Twitter.

April 2011: Twitter … the little time-waster that proved them all wrong!

May 2010: An update for theatre lovers.  Check out and join in using the #2amt hashtag for some great theatre chat. The hashtag serves to focus the threads of conversation which then get further treatment on the 2amt website.   This post is from January 2009, but nothing much has changed really!

My social network
Image by luc legay via Flickr

I feel as though I have been embedded in my social media for the past month. The chat has been relentless but fascinating, and it’s coming via several channels, the principal one of which is Twitter.

The Twitter phenomenon continues to astonish with its ubiquity; just Google ‘Twitter’ and stand back.  I’ve had a Twitter account since mid-2007 but it’s taken off in an extraordinary way in the past 3-6 months. This means the number of potential contacts has exploded. Now this is a good, and a bad thing. My original dismissal of Twitter as a good-for-not-very-much-time-waster hasn’t been proved to be entirely wrong; yes it can soak up time and attention, but I have to say that the sheer size of potential contacts makes it wonderfully useful and really … well … sociable. It’s ‘on’ 24/7 as well, so if you can’t sleep and want to talk about something to someone, there’s always a kindred spirit ‘out there.’

Twitter’s greatest strength is also its biggest annoyance. I’ve been followed by a lot of Twitter users, but sadly many are on the bandwagon for the sake of it. Some are just stupid spammers flogging a product … and aren’t they easy to spot! PS Unless we have something in common I don’t automatically follow my followers as some do.  I know mine, and mine know me – eventually – at least that’s the way I like my social networks to operate. You can stop someone who wants to be a follower by blocking, but I tend not to do that unless they’re one of the aforesaid spammers or bots. The thing is, I know not all do, but I want meaningful (two-way) contact with the stream – and it makes sense if we have a couple of things in common, right? Follow me, then make contact, and we’re off.

Anyhow, where is this going? Fact is there are a lot of theatre folk, a diversity of digital groundlings from all over the world on Twitter, and they’re getting in on the chatter – the word of mouth stuff that we’re so fond of. I nearly said ‘gossip’ there for a sec!  In fact, right now in a digital stream near you there is probably some great gossip conversation happening: questions, quick reviews, references to terrific blog posts, videos, plus thoughtful discussion on more serious matters – acting, writing, professional development,  and wider ranging, web-related topics which include the birthing of online criticism, digital marketing and economics. If you love to talk about the theatre … of course you do … and you’re not on Twitter, then I suggest you hustle on over and join up.

The first thing you do after joining is to follow me (@Dramagirl) and something called @hashtags. Contact me and say hello, and I’ll follow you back.  It’s a good idea if your profile indicates your interests by the way; you set this up when you join. Get a picture up as well.  From then on, tag your theatre-related messages (tweets) with #theatre (that’s the Twitter hashtag group where any tweet tagged #theatre can be found).  Then you just wait for the inbound theatrical traffic to sniff you out,  or for you to sniff out some likely ‘adds’ from the stream as it rushes by. And of course you are not limited to talking about theatre once you’re on Twitter. It’s open season for chat.

Feel like joining the chatstream? The global bar is open groundlings!