040: How do we build audiences for our work? Playwright Allan Maule considers marketing theatre in the Triangle

How might we cultivate a larger audience across the Triangle? How do playwrights write about things that are meaningful and that will also have an audience? In this episode I’m talking with Allan Maule, a Durham-based playwright and writer with more than twelve years of writing experience for the stage and digital media.

As playwrights and theatre-makers, Allan and I geek out hard in this conversation considering how to cultivate audiences for our work, intentional storytelling and ownership of the narrative, the fragmenting of communities,  the value of mixology and more.

Allan Maule’s plays have been performed in New York, Chicago, and theaters across NC. Favorite productions of his plays include Framing the Shot (Sonorous Road Theater, Wordshed Productions), EverScape (NYC Fringe 2015 and Sonorous Road Theater), Tales and Fermentations (SEED Art Share with the City of Raleigh Museum), Two Late(Carrboro Arts Center 10×10), and An Awkward Family Boodle (Burning Coal Theatre). Allan also worked as a video game writer and voice director Allan is a graduate of Duke University and holds a masters in performance studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a creative writer for branding, video, and content.

This episode is brought to you by the Soapboxers, the official patrons of the Artist Soapbox. If you like these episodes and want more, get on the Soapbox! Podcast recorded at Shadowbox Studio in Durham, NC.

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Time break-down:

[0:00] Episode intro and bio for Allan Maule and it’s our 40th episode!!!

STRUCTURING THE WRITING PROCESS

[2:32] Allan has recently shifted to freelancing as a writer for branding, video and marketing content. How has becoming a freelancer affected his work as a playwright? What structures and community connections does he have in place to support his theatre-writing? The lightening bolt of inspiration vs. the scheduled approach. The revision process.

TELLING A STORY THAT MATTERS

[13:48] How can you write about things that are meaningful and that will also have an audience? Who is my audience for the work I’m doing? How do you write for communities that are not your own? Privilege. Metaphor. Listening.

THE MARKETING PROBLEMS IN TRIANGLE THEATRE

[24:15] How might we cultivate an audience across the Triangle and what should we consider? Seeing theatre as something essential and meaningful compared to digital services and stories. Leaning into the theatre experience and cultivating a crowd.

WORKS IN PROGRESS

[34:05] A web-series pilot and play that Allan is working on. Yay! Theatre spaces. Mixology. Barriers to entry and the creation of new worlds.

[50:45] Thank you and sign off

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Artist Soapbox

Artist Soapbox is a platform for original scripted audio fiction and an opportunity for artists to discuss their creative work in their own voices. We do this through our interview podcast, our blog, and original audio dramas.

Artist Soapbox is an anti-racist organization. We believe Black Lives Matter. In addition, as a podcast production company, ASBX has signed the Equality in Audio Pact on Broccoli Content.

Artist Soapbox is more than just a podcast.

We lead writers groups, accountability support, workshops, and events. We produce and create audio dramas too! Listen to the Master BuilderThe New Colossus Audio Drama, Jesus Pancake, Declaration of Love, and ASBX Shorts. Stay tuned to hear about more projects written by the Soapbox Audio Collective Writers’ Group.

Audio Dramas

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Jesus Pancake

Jesus Pancake is the newest scripted audio fiction series from Artist Soapbox. Nine episodes of zany dark comedy.

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The New Colossus

The New Colossus Audio Drama is a totally unhinged dark comedy reboot of Anton Chekhov’s classic play, THE SEAGULL.

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Master Builder

This audio drama was adapted from Tamara’s 2018 stage play produced by Little Green Pig Theatrical Concern and inspired by Henrick Ibsen’s classic, The Master Builder published in 1892.

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Declaration of Love

Co-producers Aurelia Belfield and Tamara Kissane of Artist Soapbox commissioned eleven NC playwrights to craft short audio scenes based on the prompt “Declaration of Love.”

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ASBX Shorts

ASBX Shorts are six short audio fiction pieces created and produced by North Carolina artists. Artist Soapbox Shorts were specifically contributed by the artists to aid in fundraising and to get everyone excited about Jesus Pancake, our new audio fiction series in development.

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