We are delighted to open applications to direct our 2022 Summer production. We are keen to hear from as many potential directors as possible. As long as you have some directing experience, we would be pleased to hear from you – whether you have worked with us in the past or not.
We have not yet settled on a venue for 2022 – we are open to a range of ideas – including (but not limited to) returning to University Parks where we performed in 2019, St Edward's School (home of our 2021 Summer of Magical Theatre) or one of the College Gardens. If you have your own suggestions, please feel free to share them with us. We are looking to perform for two weeks during July 2022 – but again we are able to be flexible on this.
Over the past 65 years, our summer productions have traditionally been Shakespeare plays, but other recent productions include Pride and Prejudice, Treasure Island and Canterbury Tales, so there are no hard and fast rules other than it be suitable for performance in an outdoor space!
Probably the most important thing to look at when considering a potential play is whether it will appeal to the audiences that traditionally come to our summer shows. There are three main groups: Oxford residents, tourists and language/summer school parties. So the play we eventually select will need have to have strong name recognition.
If we do choose to return to University Parks, one of the restrictions of working there is that we are limited as to the running time – so we are looking for projects that could potentially work with a maximum run time of 2 hours including interval. Whilst there is some flexibility in this, there is a deadline by which everyone has to leave the venue at the end of the performance and we have to work within those parameters. Please bear that in mind when considering scripts.
There is a huge freedom to create a very special performing arena when we work in a garden/outdoors setting. If you would like to discuss informally these opportunities with others who have experience with summer show production, please do get in touch.
Our summer shows are major undertakings – large cast, large crew, large creative team. It is probably not the place for someone with no directing experience under their belt – but, of course, it is not only OTG experience that counts!
We are asking potential directors to have these things in mind when looking at pieces they might wish to pitch.
Please note that OTG has a separate new writing review and submission process: all new scripts should be submitted in full to the committee via firstname.lastname@example.org well in advance of any pitch deadline to be considered for production. Additionally, we ask that a director who is not also the author be nominated for such productions.
** We are aware that one of the other Oxford companies has already decided on A Midsummer Night's Dream for 2022 – so we ask that you don't pitch that particular comedy **
The timetable for applications is as follows:
5 October – Applications open
We welcome any preliminary indications of an intention to pitch (to email@example.com) at an early stage, and can provide any needed practical advice along the way. It is essential that directors check with rights holders ahead of preparing their pitches to be certain that a production would be possible in the summer of 2022.
6pm on 10 November – Deadline for pitch documents to be sent to the committee (firstname.lastname@example.org)
For more details of what to include in your pitch, please see the attached notes. Please note that unfortunately we cannot guarantee to consider any late applications owing to the short timescales
17 November – Interviews
If you are not available to attend an interview on that evening, please alert us before submitting your pitch so that alternative arrangements can be put in place, where necessary.
Please note that following a recent review of our pitch process, we have made the following amendments:
In the event of there being fewer than two candidates submitting a pitch, the pitch process will be automatically reopened for an additional TWO weeks.
The committee reserves the right to create a shortlist of candidates to be invited to the interview stage.
If you have any questions about the process, working in outdoor spaces or would like help in putting together a pitch, please get in touch with us at email@example.com and we will be happy to talk to you about it.
Preparing a pitch
Please prepare a short document covering all the points below. This will be circulated to the Guild committee and will form the basis of our discussions with you.
In addition to the pitch, please supply a substantial extract from the play (if not Shakespeare), as well as a short summary of your pitch (up to 250 words) for circulation to our members in Prompt, our regular newsletter. We ask that all documents are supplied in PDF form if at all possible.
Please do not hesitate to ask if you need any help completing the pitch. There are three main areas to look at when planning your pitch:
About the play
Why you have chosen it
Key selling points – for audiences and potential cast members
Size and mix of cast
Rights – are they available and at what cost
How you intend to treat the play – style, design, tone etc.
Your approach as a director and what OTG members will get out of the experience of working with you as a director
Your theatrical CV
Any collaborators you have already spoken to
Requirements & Planning
Specific skill(s) required for cast, if any e.g. accents, stilt walking
Any safeguarding implications – intimacy, use of child actors – please ask if you are unsure
Technical requirements and anything out of the ordinary, with any cost implications (rough idea)
Suggested audition dates (i.e. point in a month) and format
Suggested rehearsal start date, plus an outline rehearsal schedule
Working with OTG
Creating a safe and supportive atmosphere is important to us as an organisation so we ask that everyone who is involved in OTG activities takes the time to read our Statement of Values, our Bullying & Harassment policy, our Safeguarding policy and our Audition policy.
OTG statement of values
Oxford Theatre Guild (OTG) is a charity registered in England and Wales and is run wholly by volunteers to promote the advancement of the art of drama. We believe that all OTG’s members and volunteers have the right to be healthy, happy, safe, valued and respected. OTG collectively strive for best practice in health and safety and an environment free from bullying, harassment or discrimination.
OTG’s committee will work pro-actively to prevent or tackle anything that contravenes our values. Any actions, speech or behaviour in breach of these values should be brought to the attention of the committee.