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Home Grown: The Boston Theatre Conference 2011
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Linking the pleasure of theatre with a commitment to the community

February 27 and 28,  2011 at The Paramount Theatre


The Boston Theater community is made up of artists, organizations, and enthusiasts united by the desire to provide and experience exceptional performances, inspired programming and unforgettable events. As a community we have grown and been strengthened through our ongoing engagement with each other, our diverse perspectives and our interest in dialogue.   

On February 27 and 28 we convened the New England theater conference, Home Grown and came together to talk about:  How the Boston theater scene has taken root, grown and flourished. And what steps do we take to keep it alive and growing

With inspiration provided by our keynote speaker, Barbara Lynch (Founder of The Barbara Lynch Gruppo, our panel of theater innovators commented on parallels with the Slow Food movement (local, fresh, sustainable Over the last twenty years, the slow food movement has organized, educated and nurtured our appreciation of local food.  We think we can learn from the movement how to nurture our community.

Who is the Boston Theater community? Huntington Theatre Company, Managing Director Michael Maso reflected on the changes he has seen in New England theater during his tenure. As we define ourselves, how do we engage with the community at large? What role does the theater community play in both mirroring and shaping our multi faceted society? The Boston Theater Conference aimed to engage all theater practioners, including actors, directors, designers, technicians, dramaturgs, administrators, board members, educators and audience members in tackling these themes.

Taking a lesson from the slow food movement we want to grow our local theater community by bringing everyone around the table.  During workshops, performances, and panels we encourage relationships between the creators of the art and those who enjoy it, cultivate an appreciation for theater by changing societal values towards the art and by examining alternative ways for people to engage and participate.  Virtually we work through the blog to define Slow Theater for Boston in preparation for the conference.

Schedule of Events

Sunday 2/27/11

2pm                 Registration

3pm                 Welcome

3:30pm            Key Note Address – Barbara Lynch

4:00pm            Break –

4:15pm            Panel – Fresh, Local, Sustainable what can we learn from Slow FoodUSA, featuring

                      Melia Bensussen, Karen MacDonald, Rafael Jaen, Melinda Lopez, John O’Brien and Skip Curtiss                

5:15pm            Reception, including pop-up performance

6:30pm         Tour of The Modern Theatre

Monday 2/28/11

10am               Registration

11am               Breakout sessions and Tours

12:15pm          Break –

12:30pm          Roundtable lunch discussions; box lunces

2pm                 Roundtable Follow-up, with leaders from each lunch group & moderator

3:45pm           Break –

4pm                Closing address – Michael Maso

5pm                End of day 


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