TheatreLink is a project of the Education Department of Manhattan Theatre Club, a not-for-profit theatre in New York City and member of The League of Resident Theatres. TheatreLink uses computer technology and the Internet to enable students in geographically remote locations to study and create theatre together. If you would like more information on TheatreLink, please e-mail Manhattan Theatre Club at email@example.com or call 212-399-3000, ext.4255.
The two-phase TheatreLink process encompasses a full semester. In phase one, each participating class studies a play produced by MTC, views a video clip of a key excerpt, then writes an original scene modeled on the excerpt. In phase two, each class sends its scene to a partner school, which produces it. Each class is thus the author of one scene and the producer of another. During the production phase students learn about and are assigned theatre jobs (actor, stage manager, designer, etc.). The production process requires regular intersite communication as producers confer with playwrights about production issues via e-mail as well as the electronic bulletin boards and chat rooms on the TheatreLink Web site. Students can transmit photographs, design sketches, and sound clips by using the site’s image and RealAudio uploading capabilities.
As a culmination, the scenes are recorded, viewed by all three sites, and discussed on-line together. The process is guided by MTC’s New York City-based teaching artists, who confer and collaborate with classroom teachers and communicate with the students through the site. Those schools that have video conferencing technology can use it to provide students with live, real-time interaction with their teaching artist and their partner school. At the project’s culmination, the author school, the producer school, and their teaching artist use videoconferencing to view then discuss the live, streamed performance.
TheatreLink was established in 1997 with a lead gift from IBM.
TheatreLink is made possible through the generous support of the The Houston Endowment and Verizon Communications.