NAPAMA President David Wannen recently attended the Association of Performing Arts Conferences in Portland, OR. David offered the membership a recap. Read on.
From President David Wannen, dated February 22, 2016:
I had a great APAC (Association of Performing Arts Conferences) last week in Portland. Thanks to all of you who wrote in and contributed to our NAPAMA Agenda. I had lunch and dialogued with Boomer from IPAY, Sam Calhoun from Arts Northwest, Mario and Scott from APAP(Jenny T. on the phone, Angela Urbanz and Susan Chandler, Tim Wilson and Jennifer Stewart from WAA, and Leland and Ethan from PAE.
The group is EXTREMELY respectful of our work in the field and really care about the interests of Agents & Managers, Producers and Artists that NAPAMA represents. Jerry Ross has done a great job building that relationship- I felt so comfortable and at ease, which led to focusing on some great stuff. A brief summary of that agenda:
We discussed having a greater role in guiding conferences as they design their Professional Development, working to solve scheduling problems and assisting the conferences with content selection. We discussed keeping indie and juried showcasing in the forefront of conference leadership's minds as they go through their site selection process. PAE did let us know they are making a conscious decision to have the juried showcases ON SITE at the hotel in Orlando, which will hopefully drive attendance. They admit there may be a trade off from traditional theatre venues in terms of technical specs, etc, but that they want to try and drive as much traffic to the showcases as possible. The other conferences were very much aware that facilitating all showcasing is a priority.
I was able to affirm how much Free Wi-Fi in the hall is important to us, and gave kudos to APAP for accomplishing that. The leadership hears the issue- they just have to deal with many variables from different types of venues- often free wifi is impossible or unreliable etc. They do have a possible solution that if approached we will communicate to everyone.
We discussed the ongoing email spamming issue and NAPAMA's place in coming up with a solution. We may partner with the conferences to help all of us use tools the conferences might provide- like improved data fields that we could segment the downloadable lists for each conference- in order to enhance targeting and cut down on email waste.
The leadership loved our plans for another round of market research and gave suggestions on topic areas they were interested in.
We discussed suit casing and the many challenge folks who take advantage of conference but don't register pose to the system, on both sides...
We were complemented on our commitment to mentoring, and excitement is building around a new NAPAMA initiative -a year round mentoring program.
This was just a few of the areas I thought you all would be interested in. Keep up the good work everyone!