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News & Press: Announcements

ASTR Announces ATAP Initiation Program Grant

Thursday, October 2, 2014   (0 Comments)
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The American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR) is pleased to announce its inaugural ATAP Initiation Program Grant, which will be awarded to a Baltimore-area theatre company during the organization’s annual conference at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, November 20–23, 2014.

The American Theatre Archive Project (ATAP) is an ASTR initiative that supports theatre makers in archiving records of their work for the benefit of artists, scholars, patrons, and the public. In 2012, ATAP launched an Initiation Program, which places an archivist-documentarian team with a theatre company to assess records of historical value and formally establish archives. The ATAP Initiation Program takes place over the course of one month and comprises the elements below. Session times vary depending on number of theatre staff, records, etc.

  • Orientation: Preserving Your Theatre’s Legacy – 90-120 minutes during week 1. This interactive orientation provides an overview of the work ahead and generates a provisional archives mission statement that reflects the theatre’s values. It’s the “theory” before the practice begins.
  • Assessment – up to 6 hours of appointments during weeks 2-3. The archivist surveys records and storage spaces and interviews staff about current and desired archival practices. Upon completion of the assessment, the archivist will submit a report with recommendations and follow-up questions to answer before the workshop.
  • Workshop: Establishing Your Theatre’s Archives – 90-120 minutes during week 4. This interactive workshop introduces and applies basic archival principles and practices based on the recommendations from the assessment. Theatre staff will leave with a refined mission statement, goals for the next quarter, specific tasks to take on immediately, and a formal committee to oversee the work ahead. The documentarian will work with staff to write a case study of the process that can be shared with other theatres and funders.

The Program currently costs $1000: $600 covers archivist/documentarian stipends, and $400 goes toward archival supplies (boxes, hard drives, etc.) for the theatre company. The ATAP Initiation Program Grant will cover these costs for the selected Baltimore-area theatre. Grant applications will be evaluated based on the theatre company’s readiness to begin an archival program, including leadership support, staff support, budget awareness, time, and space. To apply, visit, click ATAP Initiation Program at the bottom of the page, and fill out the form by October 31, 2014.

All applicants will be contacted by ATAP, and the recipient of the grant will be notified by November 10. The ATAP Initiation Program Grant will be presented at the ASTR Awards Luncheon on November 22. To help you get started on establishing your theatre’s archives with or without the ATAP Initiation Program, download ATAP’s free guide: Preserving Theatrical Legacy: An Archiving Manual for Theatre Companies.

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