For the Record

Documenting Performing Arts Audience Development Initiatives

Published in: GIA Reader, Vol 11, No 1 (Summer 2000)

Written and researched by Paul Connolly and Marcelle Hinand, The Conservation Company

1998, 80 pages; Association of Performing Arts Presenters, 1112 16th Street N.W., Suite 400, Washington, D.C. 20036.

This attractive handbook presents a study of documentation methods from The Arts Partners Program, an audience development initiative sponsored by the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund. The initiative funded performing artists' residencies during which presenting organizations used a variety of strategies to engage audiences with the resident artists' work.

The handbook validates common sense approaches. Its most interesting section, "Stories from the Field," offers case studies of documentation approaches taken by five organizations. For the Record recognizes that for projects relying on the quality of interaction between artists and audiences, documentation may more appropriately represent results than other forms of study or analysis. The handbook emphasizes the pragmatic, including work sheets and sample budgets.

Review by Frances Phillips, Walter and Elise Haas Fund.