Now that we have the results of the mid-term election, I know that many of you are wondering what action should be taken with respect to the upcoming changes in Congress. The Performing Arts Alliance, of which TCG is a founding member, will be providing an update and recommendations this week. Before we establish definitive strategy, it is important for us to get more information about who will chair various committees. We encourage you to communicate with your newly elected officials starting in January when they actually take office—or before if you have a pre-existing relationship. Please convey the importance of theatre and the arts in your communities.
I had a fascinating conversation last week with Bill Baldwin, former Forbes editor and current Forbes investment strategies reporter. He is going to speak at TCG’s Fall Forum on Governance this weekend, here in New York. Baldwin is an expert on tax strategies for individuals, and he was curious about whether it’s typical for theatres to have planned giving programs as part of their fundraising and donor development strategy. I know that a number of theatres do but it’s something that all theatres should explore.
On a separate note, a number of artistic directors have spoken to me recently about their use of social media. Some are “old hands” at it, while others are just beginning to foray into this world and are wondering: 1) What are the best platforms to use and 2) What are the most important messages to convey? Last Thursday, Crain’s New York Business hosted a social media panel featuring arts luminaries such as the Public Theater’s Oskar Eustis and the Metropolitan Opera’s Peter Gelb on Friending the Facebook Generation Without Alienating Baby Boomers. Check out the Twitter stream from the event. Meanwhile, Fiach Mac Conghail, director of the Abbey Theatre in Dublin keeps it simple. He only uses Twitter and he is very consistent in providing updates—I especially liked his recommendation of the Ted Talk from Simon Sinek on how great leaders inspire action. Check out his Twitter stream.