The purpose of the DG Footlights™ series is to provide Guild members with an opportunity to gain exposure, to develop their craft, and to obtain credentials.
This initiative operates on a space-grant model: a representative from the Guild will arrange for a venue to donate space during allocated dates and times, and will ensure that the space is available for dramatists to use to present a self-produced reading to the public, with an optional feedback session following the reading. Attendance is always free and open to all.
This is an opportunity for local and regional dramatists to showcase a self-produced reading to the public. Writers are responsible for finding their own director (if wanted), and their own cast. Participating dramatists should not expect the hosting venue to continue development on the piece beyond the reading. Organizers and venues may offer additional resources, but please bear in mind that this is not required of them.
It is your sole responsibility to promote your reading, and to build an audience for your work. However, The Dramatists Guild will assist you, by sending out regional invitations, and by posting the event on the DG website's National Events Calendar. Additionally, your reading will be included in the Opportunity Digest, which is sent to the entire national membership on a weekly basis.
A note on the selection and presentation of dramatic works - DG Footlights™ is a Dramatists Guild program that operates on a space-grant model, where the Guild provides the space and time for a randomly selected dramatist to have their work read in front of an audience.
Since the Guild is an organization of, by and for writers, among its foundational principles are its advocacy for free expression and opposition to censorship. Therefore, neither the Guild nor any of its representatives are empowered to assess the creative content that may be presented at a DG Footlights™ reading, including the subjective determination of whether or not a work may be perceived as harmful or will otherwise have a negative impact on its potential audience.
In light of this, moderators of events should communicate to potential attendees that the works presented are randomly selected and do not necessarily reflect the views or values of the Dramatists Guild, its staff, volunteer representatives, or membership. It should be made clear, both prior to the program and at the event itself, that participation in the program is in no way, shape, or form an endorsement by the Dramatists Guild.
To provide potential attendees with additional information when they are deciding whether to register for an event, and to put the public on notice, organizers may collect and disseminate any relevant content warnings related to the selected works, alongside play synopses and event details. These content warningsshould, however, be descriptive, not conclusoryassessments, of the content of the work.
If an organizer is concerned about a selected work’s content such that they feel that it will impact their own ability to facilitate their role as the event moderator, they should ask an Ambassador or a trusted volunteer in their community to perform that function instead, and/or contact Jordan Stovall, Regional Programs Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org, to arrange for a suitable substitution.