What is a Residency?
Any self-respecting fan of musical theatre will know the name (if not the entire lyrics by heart) Wicked, one of the most successful Broadway and West End musicals of our time. Author Gregory MacGuire penned the book during an artistic residency. Got your attention? Good, because while not all residencies end so famously, they do promise an exciting and fulfilling opportunity for artistic growth.
Inspiration away from home
A residency simply means someone has offered to host you away from home (and often country) so you can concentrate fully on your craft or project for a specific period of time. The very least a residency provides is time and space for you to work. It also may or may not include accommodation, equipment, a meal stipend (allowance), opportunities to live with and collaborate with peers, mentorship, and the chance showcase your work at the resident concert hall or theatre.
What is expected of me?
Again, the answer is, it depends. There are places you go to develop as an artist, others that help you develop or complete a piece of work. Some residencies want to see the work you do while you are there. Some specify a number of hours devoted to your craft, others a regular report of your progress, others still a performance. Generally, what is expected is something that will help you achieve the goal you set for yourself when you applied.
Should you start packing?
Eventually, yes. First you need to find the right residency for you. To help you with your search, Arteri recommends that you check out:
Article image credit: Jim Lamberson | Wikimedia Commons