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“We believe a great theatre experience inspires, entertains, transforms and nourishes the human spirit” – Circa Council

Circa Theatre will welcome submissions from professional theatre practitioners and companies for the 2023 Circa programme between 1 Feb – 31 May 2022.

We are looking for small cast plays and new Aoteaora New Zealand works.

We welcome and encourage pitches that feature new and innovative ways of engaging with audiences considering we may still be using the Covid-19 Protection Framework in 2023, but we will still consider traditional pitches as well.

Please send your completed application form to the Programming Co-ordinator Linda Wilson programming@circa.co.nz before 5pm Tuesday 31 May 2022.

Our programme is the life-blood of our theatre. The Circa Council is responsible for all programming decisions and considers a large number of plays each year in order to settle on a programme that strives to match our artistic vision. In a rigorous selection process, projects are assessed on their artistic and commercial strengths.

1. What are we looking for?

Our annual programme is a mix of classics and new work from Aotearoa New Zealand and across the globe. We programme a wide-ranging selection of work including drama, comedy, dance, immersive and interactive theatre, musical theatre, children’s theatre, and an annual pantomime. Circa is dedicated to the development, creation, and presentation of new Aotearoa New Zealand work, including Māori and Pasifika work.

Circa tends to programme projects that have a production model in place (most applications have a director attached), although we will consider new scripts from playwrights with a view to developing these towards production.

2. We welcome: 

Māori and Pasifika scripts

Devised projects

Plays that are politically and socially engaged

Plays that are artistically ambitious and thematically expansive.

Preference is given to full-length scripted plays with small casts (8 is a large cast) and to new Aotearoa New Zealand work. There is limited scope for re-mounts of works previously seen in Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington.

3. The process

Selected submissions will be asked to pitch their proposals to the Circa Council on Saturday 9 July 2022. These submissions will be notified from August 2022 as to their inclusion in the 2023 Programme.

4. Things to consider in your submission:

Submissions are assessed on their artistic vision, their context in our annual programme, their ability to meet our audiences, and the practicality of the production. Submissions should provide a clear overview of a projects practical and artistic makeup, in the context of presenting at Circa Theatre.

Circa comprises two venues – Circa One seats around 228 with flexible seating so the number can vary from around 180 (though we do not want to go much lower than this because it is our larger venue) and Circa Two, which seats 102.

Circa is not a venue for hire but enters into partnerships that work on a division of the Box Office take. There is limited support funding available from Theatre Artists’ Charitable Trust (TACT). If required, this should be indicated on the initial submission.

There are a limited number of slots available in Circa One, which is programmed predominantly into 4 week seasons (plus a production week) giving 26 performances.

There is more flexibility with the length of a season and the length of play in Circa Two, but also less funding available from TACT.

If you have any questions regarding planning a production for the Circa programme please contact Programming Co-ordinator Linda Wilson programming@circa.co.nz to discuss your project.

5. How does Circa Theatre work?

Circa offers ongoing professional opportunities for theatre practitioners. Most of the productions we programme are produced by Single Venture Partnerships (SVP), where participating artists agree to share their risks and rewards in partnership with Circa. At the start of rehearsals, the SVP decides its production budget and how it will split any profit. At the end of the season, after booking fees and GST have been accounted for, the SVP takes 70% of the box office income. Out of this, they pay production costs and the balance is shared amongst the participating artists.

The remaining 30% goes to Circa to cover administrative costs and royalty payments (10%). If there are no royalty payments to be made, the split between Circa and the SVP is 80% : 20%.

Circa may agree to support the SVP by floating production costs during the rehearsal and presentation periods, and some funding may be available towards artists living costs during rehearsals.

Priority is given to new productions, however, some funding may be available to support shows being re-mounted or touring.

Circa provides general support for marketing however, each SVP must have a designated Publicist and/or Social Media Manager as part of their team.

Circa’s Technical Manager is available in an advisory capacity, each co-op must provide its own designers, technicians, and operators.

Directors should note that the Circa model requires that their role often includes elements of producing as well.