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.

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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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