Frequently Asked Questions
about The Gladstone’s Resident
What are the eligibility criteria for resident company status?
As laid out in TGT’s incorporation bylaws, a theatre company interested in becoming a resident company must:
- be local,
- have produced at least three shows at the Gladstone, and
- commit to producing at least one theatrical production per season.
How do new resident companies get approved?
Applications to become a TGT resident companies are approved by the TGT Board and, separately, by the existing resident companies.
Is there a limit on the number of resident companies at the Gladstone?
There is no formal limit on how many resident companies there can be, but there is a practical one in that there are only 52 or so rentable weeks in a calendar year. TGT needs to balance bookings between resident companies, other local companies, and commercial companies.
TGT currently has five resident companies.
What are the benefits of resident company status?
When the Theatre Manager begins to build the upcoming season calendar, the resident companies are the first to submit their show date requests. By longstanding practice, each resident company can book up to four weeks per year, most often as two two-week blocks. Once these requests are booked in, any additional booking requests by resident companies go to the back of the queue. Bookings are confirmed when a company signs a contract and pays a $500 deposit for each show they plan to produce.
Shows produced by the professional resident companies have often been packaged and promoted as a core season.
What are the responsibilities of resident company status?
First, you must produce at least one show every year. All artistic choices are yours, but so are all financial risks and returns. Resident companies are expected to firmly commit to their bookings, cancelling only in extreme circumstances, recognizing that TGT relies on that rental income, and that cancelling violates the collaborative spirit resident companies are expected to help foster.
Second, resident companies commit to working collaboratively with each other. What this means in practical terms is still evolving. The resident companies have recently have agreed to share their PR and VIP lists; to compare their individual comp policies with an eye to possibly harmonizing them; to offer a standard PWYC matinee during the course of each run; and to market their shows as “X Company @ The Gladstone.”
Third, resident company members are expected to attend resident company meetings (4 to 12 per year), and contribute volunteer time to fulfilling common goals.
Fourth, the resident companies must be willing to offer additional volunteer hours to ensure the wellbeing of the theatre. For example, at a time when TGT’s finances were especially vulnerable, the Board introduced tiered rental rates for a period of one year. This raised rental rates for everyone, with the highest jump for commercial companies, a more modest jump for local companies, and the smallest jump for resident companies. At the time, the resident companies committed themselves to making up the difference by taking on some of the work that was handled by outside contractors. All potential resident companies should be aware of this, in case such a situation comes up again.
Finally, resident companies support TGT, and commit not to work or speak against it. TGT’s resident companies are partners: ambassadors for—and core supporters of–the theatre. There are ideas in the works to showcase this special relationship with the theatre, such as banners with the companies’ logos hung on the theatre’s façade, being listed in every program, etc.
What does TGT gain by having resident companies?
Without the financial commitment of a core group of producing companies, TGT would be unable to sign a long-term lease or employment contracts. Without a secure space and staff, the theatre would be unable to fulfill its mission of offering affordable space for local theatre productions. The commitment made by the resident companies to rent 27% to 54% of each season (two to four weeks times seven companies) gives TGT a baseline of financial security the theatre could not operate without. It also ensures that a minimum number of shows will be produced each year.
Ultimately, the resident companies are a group of people deeply invested in ensuring that the theatre survives and thrives.
What is the process to apply for my company to become a resident company at The Gladstone?
First, ensure that you meet the eligibility criteria. The most direct route is then to make the Theatre Manager aware of your interest, so they can take your request to the Board and to the resident companies. You can also mention your interest to a board member or a resident company member.
Interested in producing at The Gladstone? Click HERE to learn more