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2011 TCG National Conference: TCG At 50: What If...

From June 16–18 in Los Angeles, the 21st TCG National Conference will kick off a year–long celebration of TCG's 50th anniversary. This historic convening will provide the theatre community with a unique opportunity to explore what the field has achieved, the challenges we face in this moment, and where we hope theatre will be in 50 years. How might we paint a vision for the future of our field, and what will it take to turn that vision into reality?

TCG was founded in 1961. That year, John F. Kennedy became President of the United States. The Beatles performed for the first time. The Peace Corps was created. The Civil Rights movement was in full swing as the US Freedom Riders began interstate bus rides to test the integration decision by the Supreme Court. The Six Flags theme park was founded in Texas. Roger Maris beat Babe Ruth's record when he hit his 61st home run. West Side Story was released as a film. Barbie was introduced to her boyfriend, Ken. The Fantastic Four comic books were launched.

What links these events to each other? They're all examples of the imaginative impulse — embodied by the simple question, "What if...?" Some of the world's most significant developments and inventions were born out of that impulse. TCG itself was founded (and the burgeoning not-for-profit theatre movement given a boost) when the Ford Foundation and resident theatre pioneers asked themselves, "What if there were a strong network of theatres throughout the country, with a program to strengthen their work and help them learn from each other?" That question birthed an organization with the mission of strengthening, nurturing, and promoting the professional not–for–profit American theatre.

Enter TCG!

Throughout this year's Conference, we'll begin to chart the future of the theatre field by asking ourselves, "What if...?"

What if we imagined the theatre field of the next 50 years, and began making visible progress today? We'll pursue this train of thought through difficult scenarios, as well as more positive ones as we commit to improving the health of our theatres, the strength of our artistic expressions and the impact our work has on communities in our backyards and around the globe.

  • What if theatre weren't seen as a luxury, but as central to the fabric of our country?
  • What if artists and other theatre leaders talked regularly and openly about art and aesthetics?
  • What if theatre institutions and their boards committed to hiring more people of color in leadership positions?
  • What if a group of committed philanthropists created a "Giving Pledge" initiative for theatre?
  • What if the US became more embedded in wars around the globe – what would become the role of theatre and artists?
  • What if there were a new audience engagement model as powerful as the subscription model?
  • What if theatres and artists could commit to each other for multiple years?
  • What if we could solidify new business models that would truly lead to the sustainability of our theatres?

Join us in Los Angeles as we celebrate the past, imagine a new future...and have one heck of a birthday party! This is your best opportunity of the year to think about the big picture, to focus on the nuts and bolts of everyday operations, to attend boundary–pushing plays at TCG's pre–conference symposium and festival, RADAR L.A., and to connect and reconnect with your colleagues from around the country and throughout the world.

About Los Angeles


Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles
506 South Grand Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90071

Dorothy Chandler Pavillion
135 North Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Central Los Angeles High School #9 School of Visual and Performing Arts
450 N. Grand Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90012

Summer Weather

This is one of the best times of the year to travel to Los Angeles as the days are long and the nights are relatively warm. In June days often begin foggy– locals call it "June Gloom". The fog often returns in the evening, which can make the air turn cold suddenly. These are also the worst months for smog; especially inland near the mountain ranges

Los Angeles historical–timeline

Fun LA Facts

Top 10 Myths About LA

Our Hosts: LA Stage Alliance

LA Stage Alliance, a not-for-profit organization empowering artists and engaging audiences since 1975, is dedicated to building awareness, appreciation and support for the performing arts in Greater Los Angeles strengthening the sector through audience engagement, community building, collaborative marketing, professional development and advocacy. LA STAGE serves over 500 arts organizations annually, 300+ dues–paying member organizations comprised of professional, educational and community–based producing and presenting performing arts organizations, with the remaining groups coming from the broader arts and culture community. LA STAGE creates strategic programming to "raise the floor" for the entire arts community, allowing artists to reach increasingly ambitious artistic and administrative goals and heights as they develop and mature.