A long time ago, in the age of Kings, a department of fine arts used to be the home for all artists where the staff of this department are trained equally with the aesthetics of dance and humanities and they were thought “Art Management” Not “Artist Management”. However, when we fast forward today, The Art of Managing “Artist “became popular. With a number of events growing around with different focus groups, causes, collaboration and communities, artists are left to stake while their costume colours need to speak more than that of art.
When we Internalize the situation its clear to us that the majority of the event organizers are not aware or uneducated to seek art. It’s just left as a scope of entertainment and not as nutriment to one’s soul. This is a high time to call out the situation and let them know how to manage “art” rather than “Artists”. If you are an event Organizers, here are the few Do’s and Don’ts for you to do justice to your role and embrace art.
Do a proper Planning of the event
Planning is important. understand how much time you have and list down the dancers you would like to include for performances and duration of the event prior. Make sure of the venue and equipment’s needed and speak to the performance artist and give them an exact time.
Don’t rush the dancers to the stage whenever you find a space
Your dancer is your showstopper. he should be given priority than chief guest whose attendance for the event is ambiguous or apparent. just to fit in their time rushing the dancers to stage is really distressing. A dancer must go through makeup, dress up and internalization and just for a publicity flick, we rush the poor dancers to stage. This not only makes the dancer unprepared but also makes him lose faith form his art.
Do set up the right expectations of time given to an artist
Discuss with the dancer the time allocated and once the word is fixed write it up somewhere so that you don’t forget. Dancers stage time preparation helps them to stick to time and ensure they deliver the same with perfection.
Don’t negotiate at last moment, nor stop the music abruptly
Just because you’re running late with the proceeding of the program never ask a dancer to curtail his prerecorded music minutes and this is more regressive that if a dancer is unable to edit it at the last moment, the organizers decrease the volume and abruptly shut the music. This is really a gross practice and this only proves the ignorance of the organizer towards the art.
Do explain the theme of the Event
If your event is for a cause or has a theme, explain it to the dancer prior to the event and give him the freedom to bring something unique. This would help the dancer to challenge the traditional situation and develop something innovative.
Don’t Instruct the dancer what to dance and what not to
Don’t tell a dancer on what to dance or what to wear and look. Do you dare to tell a doctor what medicine you need when your battle with a disease no right? Art such as dance and music is like a medicine to one’s soul and an artist knows better on what to present and what not too. Hence never advise a dancer what to do. Trust them and you will see wonders.
Do make necessary AV arrangements
Ask for the music, equipment requirements, green rooms and other logistics with the performers a week ahead of the event and ensure those arrangements are made. Sometimes few things are mandatory, like a green room with a good lighting, Music system with good audio, Audio jacks, pen drive with music etc. Test the audio as well as lighting prior to the event for all the performances. Also, be ready with the backup for safety. Ensure you converse with the electricians for the power backup and power cuts before the start of the event. It’s your responsibility to get the music from the performance.
Don’t run around at the last few minutes before the dancer is set to be on stage
Never run around a few minutes before the dancer’s performance for music. A dancer may not be in the position to reach out to his google drive to retrieve the music or he may not have a laptop or phone to play. by asking the same you’re putting the performer to Panic. how can then you expect him/her give their best?
Do keep the dancer posted about the stage, lights and flooring of the stage
Help the dancer understand the stage dynamics before his/her performance. Make sure that extra items such as chairs, table and other times are removed. Also give them a clean stage without pebbles, water, paper etc.
Don’t change the spacing or put obstacles on the stage
Never place materials live drums, chairs and ask the dancer to perform. You are trying to steal their space. Also, never ask them to perform on stage when people are sitting on chairs behind the performer. It’s disgusting and disrespectful for the dancers. Always a dance needs to be seen from the front and Not from behind.
Do Introduce the dancer and his skill set in details
Introduction to a dancer is mandatory. You are telling his skill set to the audience and trying to make them connect with the performer. The introduction also helps the dancer to feel welcomed and happy while setting step on stage. Readout his bio descriptively so that his/her achievements are propagated loudly.
Don’t mess up with the name
Never dare to mess with the name. it’s the biggest insult for a performer. By messing with the name, you are denying their ownership for the art. You are giving their hardship to a fictional name and not them. If you cannot pronounce the name ask for its correct pronunciation and if you by mistake misspelt the name, please make sure to correct it immediately.
Do provide media exposure and remuneration if you promised to do so
If you promised to provide the remuneration to the performer please stick to the promise as art is a custodian of belief. Make sure you deliberately put the name of the performer or picture when pitching in for media exposure. As with that, they can be noticeable.
Don’t demand money for performance
If you cannot give remuneration, that’s fine but don’t demand money for giving the opportunity. This is the saddest part of the correct situation where young dancers need to pay for their performance opportunity and by the end what the get is a feeling of being looted. When you can’t pay, don’t expect yourself to be paid. It’s a shame to collect money to give opportunities.
Do make arrangement for video recording and Photography
The last thing you can do is to make arrangement for photography and videography as it’s a memory which you need to capture for yourself. It not only helps you store the experience but also make you feel accomplished.
Don’t make the dancers wait for ages for performance pictures and videos
Once you get the photographs or video try to share it with the performer at the earliest and don’t let them wait. For you, they are just a few clicks but for a performer, they are the proof of their art. Not let them follow up multiple times. Ensure that the videos and photographs are distributed as soon as possible. If you cannot propagate the pictures mention it to them clearly so that they don’t have been in constant expectations.
So rather than focusing on Artist management, if we understand the importance of art management we will be able to make this place better for artists as well as art. Let’s understand that without an artist, the world will be colourless, ruthless and senseless. Embrace the art in this humankind and see what the wonder it can create to this society. it’s a shared responsibility and everyone needs to walk together.