Putting Ideas First

Putting Ideas First - Dance Notes creativity blog for teachers

Sometimes, telling people about your ideas can force you into action. And, even though this may feel scary, it can often be the best way to get things done.

An Open Secret

I recently delivered promotional material to a local theatre for a performance that’s in development. But the show itself doesn’t yet exist. So, how can that work? Well, this is something of an open secret within the theatrical community. If you are involved in that world it may not come as a surprise but others might think it strange.

The truth is, when you put together a theatre show, things happen in a peculiar order. One of the first things you generally do is create promotional images. Then, you’ll write some ‘blurb’, describing your masterpiece to prospective venues. After that, you design posters and flyers to attract audiences. Then, you write a press release for the media…

Something Missing

So, what’s the big reveal? Well, something’s missing from that list… The show!

I’ve worked on many theatrical productions, as composer, musician, writer and performer. And, in most cases, the show itself hasn’t been created until all of the above has taken place. But don’t be alarmed.

In order to produce all that promotional material, you really have to know what the show is going to be about. You need to have a clear vision of the mood, style and flavour of the performance. And you must be sure you can deliver, when it comes to putting it all together.

Everything Will Follow

So, all I need do now is write the thing! Well, the songs are written. The structure is in place. Special guests are booked. And everything else will follow.

You may well have experienced this with a school production, an exhibition or an open day. A date is set well in advance. And as that deadline nears, there is no option but to see through the ideas you have for how this will be presented.

Calling Your Own Bluff

It’s as though you’ve called your own bluff by saying ‘I’m going to do ‘x’ on this date’. In education, deadlines are a natural part of the process. However, on a personal level, it’s also good practice to set yourself goals and a time by which to achieve them. And if you broadcast these to the wider world, you’ll feel duty-bound to meet them.

For pupils, they can learn a valuable lesson in understanding commitment. Having promised to carry out a creative activity, especially when in collaboration, they will discover that others are now relying on them to see it through. Which, in turn, carries responsibility – both to themselves and their collaborators.

Tell The World

Next time you have a creative urge or an idea, try telling someone else about it. Then announce a date or time by which it will be finished. And promise to make the resulting work available.

Then, you will already be on the road to creating something to be proud of. Encourage your pupils to do the same. Or involve them in your own projects.

Remember: we only ever regret the things we haven’t done. So, tell the world your ideas. Then make them happen.

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