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Cruciform Theatre

September 3, 2012

A good story, well told will please the audience. Keeping this ultimate goal in mind while working on a play will keep production team members from the mortal sin of the theatrical professional: selfishness. Theatre is service first. Theatre professionals serve each other so that they may use their individual skills to serve the story together.

  1. You must serve the story. You should never ask, “What can I say with this story?” but, “What does this story have to say?” Listen first, then respond. Stuffing a story full of your own pet themes is self-serving and divisive.
  2. You must respect the craft. Whatever your position on the design or creative teams, you must learn your craft and learn it well. A person who respects his craft and wants to tell stories to an eager audience will never stop learning.
  3. You must seek to serve your team members. The oft-praised communication is only a beginning. True collaboration requires a giving of yourself for the sake of others. Great theatre production team members seek to find joy in their tasks and give that joy to others. Displaying patience, kindness, and gentleness, they pursue peace in every dispute. They humbly present ideas and take correction with equal humility. And they exhibit self-control through the many aggravating situations the show may bring their way.

Each must therefore keep this trifold responsibility in mind. Great production team members are skilled craftsmen who work well with others in service to the story at hand. What this really comes down to is love: love for the audience, love for the story, and love for the craft. And this is not the inconstant love of the middle-school crush, but the self-giving, sacrificial love of Christ on the cross.

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