Tag: arts & community

  • Excuse me, is that your bag?

    My first encounter with Peggy McIntosh‘s concept of “the invisible knapsack” was in 1999. I was 23 years old. I had just moved to Washington, DC a few months prior to work at Arena Stage in the education department (a two person plus an intern office at that time). We were to work closely with Living Stage […]

  • Because

    I’ve been in a major U.S. city the past four days running auditions for a dog & pony dc show produced by another company. The auditions consisted of three 2-hour open-call “workshops.” After the first two audition/workshops I expressed mild concern over the diversity in the pool thus far (three people of color, everyone was […]

  • I submit for your approval: a proposed ban on the phrase “I don’t see color”

    In honor of February, I propose an official ban on the phrase “I don’t see color” and derivative phrases of this sentiment used in the non-profit theatre community like “color-blind [___fill in the blank___].” Who’s with me? Not convinced already. /sigh  Watch part two of Jane Elliot’s The Angry Eye, starting at 10:00 (ps found one #withcaptions). Sharing not as […]

  • FOUND! Notes on Arts Participation as a Behavior

    How long have I been percolating on engagement and the arts? At least since 2006. In cleaning my office, found these notes from the 2006 TCG Annual Conference in Atlanta. The topic? “Building Future Audience” Thought I would share some notes from Kevin McCarthy’s “Understanding Arts Participation as a Behavioral Process,” a panel entitled “Who is the Audience […]

  • The Most Confusing Infographic Ever: audience engagement, community engagement & audience development

    Previously on A Big Eyed Fish, in defining audience engagement I noted that it was “artcentric” and differed from community engagement and audience development. In order to better show the relationship between a work of art, audience and community engagement, and audience development, I whipped up this infographic using my low-tech graphic design skills in PowerPoint: Totally clears it all […]

  • IMHO: Audience Engagement Definitions [now with updates!]

    New blogger request for forgiveness, the original post needed more before I moved on. All updates, made 1/24/15 appear in this fetching orange. A Google search of audience engagement yields a bevy of infographics: And many definitions… (underlining all mine) From Doug Borwick’s blog Engagement Matters: “Audience Engagement is a marketing strategy designed for deepening relationships […]

  • Hold Your Horses: let’s take an honest look at our audience engagement practices


  • Service Priorities – Community Needs Tension

    Prologue I am following up on recent DC theatre community hullabaloo and this New York Times piece about Oscar nominees. Cannonball This is a Helen Hayes Award: It does close to nothing to advance individual theatre artists or arts organizations. Being nominated or receiving one. That is not meant to be an ungracious statement in the least. […]

  • Privilege – Responsibility Tension: A “sound-off”

    Prologue “Do you sense a tension…” “I’m hearing a tension…” “Let’s explore that tension…” The “t” word appeared many of my sentences last year as I attempted to more closely examine the relationship between beliefs or practices with conflicting implications, rather than my opinion of a particular situation. What do I mean by “tensions”?: the Narrative […]