Hosting a CAVORT Conference is an excellent way to give prominence and visibility to your theatre, on the national and international scene. Theatre lovers from across the United States and Canada will visit your town, enjoy your theatre, and talk about it to other theatre-lovers for years to come!
Organizing and hosting a CAVORT Conference is a lot of work for the local volunteer group, but it is fun, an excellent way to bring your team to work together on a common goal. Your theatre and your volunteer group will benefit greatly from this wonderful experience, and in the process you will make many new friends.
CAVORT provides financial support to Conference organizers.If you are interested in learning more about what is involved, please contact CAVORT President Patti Slagle at firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Number one issue is cost. Since most people pay their own way to conferences, and staff people these days are on very tight budgets, it is important to keep costs down and program quality high so more people will attend.
2. Transportation – Should be convenient to a large city airport for more reasonable airfares and no need to rent a car unless one chooses. Public transportation to and from the airport is helpful.
3. Theatre – A hosting volunteer group must have the full support of their theatre in order to host a conference. CAVORT, as a separate organization from the theatre, is responsible for all its own costs, but most hotels and other resources used want the guarantee of a local organization to back up the charges. Also, the host theatre staff must be fully attuned and committed to participation in the conference. They must be willing to provide support and assistance. A written letter of support should be included from either the managing or artistic director of the theatre. It is important to know that shows will be available during the conference at the host theatre as well as other theatres in the community. It would be helpful when hosting a conference to have a solid volunteer group and members who have attended CAVORT conferences in the past.
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Please consider submitting a proposal to host a future CAVORT Conference.
6. Budget – It is important to know where to find available funding sources with the city/state such as grants, host theatre support and other local organization support. C.A.V.O.R.T. Inc is a not-for-profit corporation in accordance with section 501©3 of the US Internal Revenue code.
7. CAVORT Memberships - A major goal should be to get new theatres involved in CAVORT. Calls to regional theatres to get contact names for the newsletter are imperative. It is generally a waste of time and money to send notices and newsletters addressed to “volunteer coordinator” at a theater. Attendance and connection to the Theatre Communications Group’s (TCG) annual conference will let managing and artistic directors of theatres become aware of the value of CAVORT.
8. Given the economic constraints facing most participants, schedules should be as compact as possible, focusing on events and not blocking out time within the conference schedule for sightseeing. Those who want to see the sights should plan to come early or stay after the conference. If possible, schedule a meeting for the staff representatives to the conference that does not conflict with a seminar. A separate session for staff can justify their reason for attending and provide valuable information related to staff issues that may not be addressed in other sessions.
9. Board consideration will be given to any theatre that meets all or most of the criteria for hosting a conference.
10. The CAVORT board will decide on the next conference host three years prior to the conference. Proposals shall be sent to the President of CAVORT one month before the scheduled Board meeting of the odd number year. The President will present them at the board meeting.
4. Conference agendas should:
a. Cover information that is of relevance to all theatre volunteers.
b. Cover a variety of topics that fit both large and small theatres.
c. Provide speakers from a broad section of the arts community and not just a single organization.
d. Provide inspirational, informative, and motivational presentations.
e. Encourage attendee participation through workshops.
f. Encourage inclusion of attendees to provide at least some of the programs and/or content in the sessions, such as members of panels or leaders of workshops if they have expertise on topics being considered.
5. Hotels – It is helpful to have a hotel in close proximity to the hosting theatre with good conference facilities and moderate room rates.