rez Magazine May 2015 - Page 56

I knew and began a series of daily conversations with Chrissy that quickly grew into a deep friendship. As I began to speak with producers and observe the events and behaviors that occurred in their venues, I saw a marked difference between the attitudes of producers in the non-profit sector of the real world and producers in Second Life. First, most producers of dance in Second Life produce burlesque because their partner is a dancer. Often, they don’t have an understanding of or a passion for the art form themselves. In the real world, producers in the nonprofit sector have to raise a lot of money. If they don’t have a burning passion for their art form, they are seldom successful at raising money and keeping the doors open. I’m not saying it’s wrong to be in love with your “star performer.” Indeed, it might often happen in the real world, but a producer must first and foremost have a passion for art. They must understand that it’s about expressing ideas that are too big for words - - ideas and emotions that can only be expressed, in this case, by dance. Those beginning conversations and observations were, at times, extremely troubling to me. One conversation in particular still troubles me whenever I think of it: Cassie: You must be pleased with the weekend. Producer: Why? Cassie: Well, it was quite a success. At least it seemed that way. Producer: Just a normal [day] at [the club]. Cassie: In my field of entertainment, there’s no such beast as a normal day of performances. Producer: We have held this show for almost [X] years now … pretty much routine now. Cassie: Hmmmm. Producer: I’m sure SL and RL [are] pretty different when it comes to that. Cassie: Guess so. Producer: Kind [of] like a club. Build it. They will come. Unless you’re just an ass. Cassie: Smiles and nods Cassie: Well, then I’m glad things have settled back into the routine. Cassie: Smiles Producer: Me too. Producer: Just different viewpoints is all. Cassie: Yes, indeed. I know this attitude is not shared by all producers in Second Life, but the thought of someone’s art as being a part of something that is routine is incomprehensible to me. And while people may indeed grace your door if you open a new club or performance space, I can assure you its continued success relies heavily on careful stewardship of