I have to say at the outset that the advantages gained by using a non-theatre space for a peformance are seriously outweighed by the practical concerns that have to be dealt with. While there is no question that an unusual theatre venue has an appeal to all but the least adventurous of theatre-goers, (there is bound to be a box office advantage just to satisfy the curious as to how the space is used - especially if it is a familiar location such as Union Station) there are nonetheless a large number of factors that have to be addressed when moving outside the confines of an equipped theatre. But the difficulties are not to be underestimated. Here is a list of the concerns that must be faced.
audience related concerns:
performer related concerns:
shop facilities and related access for materials delivery (for work done on-site) and delivery of finished set elements, costumes etc.
does the site have to be returned to its normal function between performances?
Storage ( Is the backstage area set up to accommodate set/costume changes, prop storage etc.) distances eg. between wardrobe area/dressing rooms and stage
masking the unmaskable
the three thousand little things
hanging positions for instruments - usually have to be built cabling must be rented in vast quantities
positions for control boards/lighting operators
In short, virtually everything that is needed, from audience seating to dressing room mirrors to wings and masking, must be brought to the space and installed.
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