I argue that we don’t know in advance what audiences want to see. Yes, A Christmas Carol will sell during the holidays but is this artistic decision-making? We have merged the money-driven, commercial mindset with the artistic risk and opportunity that should be central to the missions of all nonprofit theaters. Foundations and donors have become victims of this messy merger between the commercial and nonprofit because they don’t want to take away support from institutions that have been critical to the creative culture of a community and become the arbiter of what’s commercial theater and what’s not.
This is an absolute must-read.