10 Takeaways from The 5th Annual TheaterMakers Summit!

What a weekend.

Sometimes I don’t know how our Summit gets even more packed with inspiration and education every year.

Oh wait, yes I do, it’s because of the 100+ incredibly passionate speakers we had, who share my passion . . . encouraging others to make more theater, and better theater. 

And this year, we had quite the lineup of all lineups. I’ve got about 3 Google Docs of bullet-pointed takeaways that I’m working through myself. (My Tip:  I start by circling the action items that I believe will have the biggest impact on my life/career – and start with those.)

If you missed The Summit . . . I’m not talking to you anymore. 

Ok, ok, I’m not very good at not talking . . . so instead, let me give you 10 of the 147,000 takeaways from this year’s Summit . . . 

Here you go.

  1. Tony Award-winning Producer Tom Kirdahy: “I don’t need a slick package but an intelligent package. Spelling, grammar, knowing your audience makes a difference”. Take some care into what you’re presenting to show the level of care you will have for the project. 
  2. Stage Aurora Theatrical’s Artistic Director Darryl Reuben Hall: “Surround yourself with people who know what you’re doing so you can succeed. Use your connections to build yourself up in that niche space. Utilize what you have & who you know to keep creating.” 
  3. Broadway Playwright and Actor Douglas Lyons on the steps he took to get to the next level: “Hustle! When trying to get something to happen- don’t be afraid to reach out to the people you want to work with! The worst someone can do when you message a producer or collaborator – the worst they could do is not respond” 
  4. What Hal Prince said to Andrew Lloyd Webber: “You can’t listen to a musical if you can’t look at it.”
  5. Tony-nominated Costume Designer Dede Ayite: “In the failure is where new things emerge. Theatre can be anywhere.”
  6. Stage Manager and Producer Cody Renard Richard on self care: Prioritize what you enjoy: having time and space outside your job. Ask yourself in regards to the job/project: “If it’s not a hell yes- it’s a hell no!” 
  7. Tony-nominated Producer Jacob Stuckelman on making theater outside of the theater: “Don’t ask for permission. The only person you need permission from is yourself.” 
  8. Composer, Lyricist, and Music Director Georgia Stitt: “You have to be brave to put yourself out there.”
  9. Producer and Investor Laura Barket: When I’m in a production I have to believe in it in order to put my money into it.” 
  10. Social Media Strategist Micayla Brewster: “When things go viral [on social media] it’s because it’s so intrinsically connected to the brand.” 

Oh, and here’s a takeaway from me . . . 

11.  Ken Davenport on NEXT YEAR’S SUMMIT.  “Come. It’s gonna be in person. Which means 147,000 more action items on how to get to your theatrical goals, in-person inspiration . . . and FINALLY, THE FACE-TO-FACE NETWORKING WITH THE SPEAKERS AND YOUR PEERS you’ve been waiting for.”  Click here to get an early bird rate that is only valid until MONDAY.  And remember, in-person means a serious limit on the amount of people who can attend.  Grab your seat here.

Keep your show organized with the Theatermaker's fool-proof management system

Improve your success rate for getting produced with daily strategy tips.

Send me the system

Related Posts


Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.