TAG adopts Chicago Theatre Standards

On May 14, 2019, the TAG board (Theater Arts Guild of Skagit County, WA) officially voted to provisionally adopt the Chicago Theatre Standards. This was followed by a four-hour training and discussion on May 25, 2019 as to how the details of Chicago Theatre Standards could best be implemented by TAG. We continue to be committed to the spirit and direction of CTS in improving the culture and experience of casts and production teams in our local community theater in Skagit County, WA and beyond.

Here we provide the Chicago Theatre Standards version from December 11, 2017. You can also download the CTS directly from https://www.notinourhouse.org/

Chicago-Theatre-Standards-12-11-17

TAG is fully committed to constant improvement of its implementation of the Chicago Theatre Standards. TAG is also fully committed to “going above and beyond” the CTS to always identify areas where additional protocols and safeguards can be put into place to protect the environment of theater arts. TAG has been, and will continue to be, open in discussions on how they can improve in creating safe spaces and open communication with our casts and theater personnel.

The overriding tenets of the Chicago Theatre Standards are: communication, safety, respect, and accountability.

MISSION STATEMENT of the CHICAGO THEATRE STANDARDS

The Chicago Theatre Standards is a voluntary tool for self-­‐governance that seeks to nurture communication, safety, respect, and accountability of participants at all levels of theatrical production. Its mission is to create:

  • Spaces free of harassment, whether it be sexual, or based in race, gender, religion, ethnic origin, color, or ability;
  • Nurturing environments that allow us to challenge ourselves, our audiences, and our communities; that support risk of mind and body; and that establish the freedom to create theatre that represents the full range of human experience;
  • A common understanding of practices for theatre environments, including written, reproducible standards available at no cost; and by
  • Peer support through mentorship and collaboration through online communication and community outreach.

The Chicago Theatre Standards is for many entities, including Non-Union theatres and theatre groups like TAG. “Non-­union theatre companies were the inspiration for this document. They traditionally have the fewest regulations and support services. They are also where many theatre artists develop their craft and their professional ethic.”

CTS is also for Parents: For parents who have children considering a career in the arts, these standards can support conversations about professional behavior, boundaries, and expectations. Too often when emerging artists find themselves in an, abusive or otherwise environment, they have said “I didn’t know who to talk to,” or “I just thought that’s the way things go.” One intention of this document is to educate prospective arts participants of what a safe environment can look like.

Chicago Theatre Standards is “an on-going collaboration of a growing community of organizations interested in adopting it. It will continue to develop as more experience with the document develops.”

As of September 2020, TAG has used CTS now for two shows (every TAG show since adoption of CTS). There have been tremendous successes in our implementation of CTS and also areas where we can improve. TAG is currently in active discussions on those successes and also areas of improvement. During the current COVID pandemic where we are not doing shows, we will take the time to diligently look at these areas and make public new protocols to further our support and implementation of Chicago Theater Standards. Thank you for your support of TAG and thank you for supporting us as we continue to improve.

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