Live and Digital - new models for public screenings of theatre
“Working with Golant is stimulating, exciting and inspiring. Through this project we have gained the skills and capability to see how we could fit into an emerging landscape of digital distribution." Bill Scott, Artistic Director
Working with Miracle Theatre, one of Britain’s foremost touring theatre companies, to test whether the concept of ‘Theatre for Screen’ is viable for the small-scale producer. Could it help a company like Miracle reach wider audiences and earn additional revenues whilst retaining a high quality audience experience?
The project explored affordable and innovative ways of making digital versions of Miracle’s theatre productions and distributing them, both live and recorded, to a network of dispersed, often rural, venues via presented screenings and on-line platforms. It tested live streaming, as live recorded and made for screen versions of ‘Waiting for Godot’ and a micro budget feature film of Miracle’s stage production ‘Tin’.
GMV worked with Miracle to review their business strategy and how they could exploit the opportunities offered by different digital channels. To explore the financial viability of ‘Theatre for Screen’ for smaller organisations we developed a business model template, designed to assist those making decisions about producing digital theatre. It can help in the necessary consideration of financing and financing structures and the potential return and risks of filmed performance products. The model consists of an accounting template, an example business model canvas and guidance notes. It is a ‘living’ model that can be used by other arts and cultural organisations for their own projects.
The project enhanced Miracle’s skills and knowledge around business strategies for filmed performance, helping it consider how to exploit its productions.
The audience appetite for locally relevant cultural filmed content has been demonstrated by the success of the post-project release of Tin, which:
- Was screened for three consecutive weeks by both Cornwall cinema chains due to demand
- Outsold Fast & Furious 7 in Truro in its first week
- Increased Miracle’s audience that year by more than 30%
- Will have a digital release across four online platforms in autumn 2015
"The GMV team have helped us reach new audiences – and earn new revenue – by embracing all things digital." Annie Ukleja, General Manager
Live and Digital was supported by the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts - Nesta, Arts & Humanities Research Council and public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. Project partners also included Falmouth University and Dogbite.