Educating the viewer as a guarantee of audience reproduction
The question of the viewer is the most important question of theatrical management: the economic situation of the theater and its financial result largely depend on it. It is clear that any theater dreams of a 100% occupancy of the auditorium. But does the sold-out always mean a favor for the theater? At what price is it achieved? Is not it worth losing tomorrow's spectators for today's success? How to set up reproduction your audience? What strategy is needed to strengthen the theater's position in the public mentality in order to survive in the sea of multiplying forms of cultural leisure?
The role of the viewer in the theater, the philharmonic society in no way can be reduced to the role of the consumer, although the subject of consumption here occupies the highest scale of all sorts of benefits - these are the so-called cultural goods. The viewer in this case (in contrast, for example, from the viewer in the cinema or in the museum of painting and sculpture) is the creator of art. He "appears as a necessary condition for his" realization, "a hundred transformations into human reality, into the phenomenon of social consciousness and social being." Entering the auditorium, he enters the community, called the "public", becomes part of the collective perceiving body, by his reaction of the formative and imposing actors "spectator score of the play." Each time, from the performance to the performance, this score will be different, unique - that's why the performance will be different every time. This, in fact, is the whole essence of the theater, the secret of its vitality and, in the language of management, its competitive advantage over other arts.
The great director of the United States theater, Georgi Tovstonogov, once remarked that the theater is talented as much as its spectator is talented. It is worth pondering this phrase. If the viewer's role is so great, how much does the theater need its own? not casual - the viewer, how painstakingly he should grow it, educate, engage in the formation of its audience? What is the difference between an occasional spectator and a theatre?
Every art models reality, and at the same time uses only its inherent ways of modeling. To understand, to decipher these ways - means to master the language of this art form. The better the viewer (the listener, the reader) has this language, the more it is prepared - the more information, more impressions and more sense he can make out of the experience of communicating with this art. When the knowledge of the language of art is not enough, the individual in the process of perception finds for himself such elements of the language that are accessible to him, although the main content of the work may remain hidden for him. If he does not meet comprehensible signs and elements of language, he is bored, uninteresting, he estimates a work of art as bad, unsuccessful, or looks for something in the text of the work that reminds him of signs known to him, and from them he constructs a certain quasi-language, which he perceives, ascribing Sometimes the work of art has a meaning that is not contained in it. This happens not only in contact with the so-called complex art forms, for example classical music, it is often found in the perception of popular, popularized arts. "
Obviously, the prepared spectator is a theater-goer - he who has experience with the theatrical art, i.e. one who has visited the theater not once or twice, but visits him regularly and has a spiritual need in this. The theater is a person who is interested in any information about the theater, about performances. He reads critical articles, listens to radio broadcasts about the theater, comparing the critic's opinion, the publicist with his own experience and judgment.
To the note
Theater is a "live advertisement" theater. Being enthusiastic himself, he draws others and leads them to the theater.
The task of forming a theater audience is to educate theatergoers who can form a powerful backbone of theatrical audience. The fulfillment of this task can be considered from the point of view of different levels of solving the problem:
at the level of the country: familiarization with the theatrical art as such, the expansion of the actualized theatrical audience throughout the country;
at the regional level: the expansion of the actualized audience of specific theaters in the region, involving all segments of the population in the region;
at the level of educational and educational: an increase in the proportion of trained, "theatrically literate" viewers who are able to fully understand the language of the theatrical art;
at the level of the organizer: the formation of the audience of a particular performance, its numerical and qualitative composition.
In order to solve the task of forming an audience, it is useful to have statistics that allow you to see the real composition of the theatrical public. Since the 1960s. In our country, from time to time, sociological research is conducted to identify the structure of the theatrical audience, compiling its "general sociological portrait." Sociological portrait contains such data as the composition of the public but to the sex, age characteristics, but the level of education, professional characteristics, etc.
Comparison of modern research with research in the 1960s and 1970s. shows that the sex indicator is the least affected by changes: in the theatrical public, women predominate, they make up 70%. But age characteristic is also observed a stable trend: the older the audience, the less she shows interest in the theater. Data of the 1970s. coincide with the data of the 2000s: 65-70% of the theatrical public is made up of viewers under the age of 40. Spectators from 40 to 50 years make up 17%, from 50 to 60 - 11%, over 60 - 5%. In terms of education as a whole, the picture does not change either. As before, the theater plays a greater role in the cultural leisure of people, the higher the level of education. On the professional level, the fact remains that the main core of the audience is the intelligentsia, and for the most part the humanitarian one.
The age indicator is the most important for understanding the perspective of theatrical art. Here we see encouraging results - 2/3 of the public are between the ages of 15 and 40. This shows that the process of reproduction of the theatrical public does not stop. Much worse in this respect is the case in most philharmonic societies of the country, where the bulk of the audience at classical music concerts consists of people of retirement age. Already this one indicator is enough to understand the urgent need for serious changes in the philharmonic business. This comparison of the theater and philharmonic public should not mislead the theater's leaders. After all, classical music, being a high art, attracts the most subtle, sensitive, trained listener who speaks the language of high art. If the society gradually disappears this layer of the audience - old and dying, and a new layer does not appear, this can not but affect the level of artistic claims of the public as a whole. The reason for visiting the theater may not be the pursuit of high and beautiful art, but some more coarse motives. Well, if it is a desire to understand the complexities of the social system (it is indicative, for example, that the so-called documentary theater is gaining popularity nowadays), but there is also the parasitism of theaters on the trend towards mindlessly entertaining pastime, and worse - on exploiting low-lying instincts. This development can turn the theater, in the apt words of G. Dadamyan, into an "aesthetic diner".
For a leader who understands that survival at any cost - this is the way to the degradation of the theater as art and culture in general, it is important to take care to have a sociological portrait of your own public. But only sociological statistics are not enough - you need to go to contact with your viewer in all available forms. It can be:
marketing research, including interviews, interviews to identify the queries, interests, disappointments and hopes of each group of viewers;
creating "friends clubs" in which the theater's creative workers can communicate directly with their regular viewers; it is very important to arrange such meetings immediately after the performance;
the invitation of theater critics and joint discussions with critics, spectators, actors and directors of theater performances: this will help expand the cultural outlook of all the audience, comprehend the language of the theater's audience, reveal new goals of the creative team;
creation of the "theater school" for children and adolescents, which will contribute not just to the reproduction of the audience, but to the reproduction of a competent, prepared audience, a viewer-creator, striving for really high art. The assortment of methods here depends only on the imagination and pedagogical potential of specialists: from an elementary acquaintance with the ethic of behavior in the theater, from an amateur performance to an integral project involving music, painting and theater, which attracts a philharmonic society, club, museum. >
Attention to children and adolescents is a strategically important area of the theater's activity, regardless of its specificity (Theater, drama, musical, puppet theater). The habit of theater, the need for theatrical art are laid down from childhood. Studies clearly show that if a person has never been in a theater as a child, a teenager, he will not come there in the future. This direction of the theater's activity should also be embodied in its repertory policy: it is necessary to include plays addressed to the young spectator in the repertoire. This is not the repertory policy, which is limited to the New Year campaign, when two or even three times the same production is rolled out during the New Year holidays, and nobody remembers the children after these holidays. This is especially important for those theaters that are the only ones in the city where there is neither the Theater of Young Spectators, nor the puppet theater.
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