Frequently Asked Questions About Our
Qualifications and Requirements
A great deal of consulting went into our Awards system. We asked advisory panels of Off-Off-Broadway theatre artists, friends, and even a mathematical engineer for their input. We believe we have come up with a well thought-out and effective plan, but the proof is in the pudding.
We fully expect to hear plenty of feedback about what's working and what's not. Your input is very valuable to us as we grow. So bring on the comments, ideas, and thoughts.
One of the great things about Off-Off-Broadway is its diversity. More than anything, we wanted to support that spirit, but it was that same diversity that made it difficult to set defining qualifications for the IT Awards.
To offer a better understanding of the awards process, we wanted to share with you some of the reasoning behind the qualifications.
- At least eight of the production's performances must fall on eight
separate days within a 30-day window.
A qualifying production can run for 8 days or 6 weeks or infinitely - if they are lucky enough. We are just asking that there are at least 8 performances.
We know that there is great Off-Off-Broadway theatre that has 4, 6 or even a single performance. However, the fairness of our system is based on every show being adjudicated by 3 judges. The fewer the performances, the harder it is to guarantee that all 3 judges will be able to attend. With 2,000 shows per year in Off-Off-Broadway theatre, it becomes exponentially more difficult to manage the dynamic assignment and ballot completion of 3 judges from the judging pool for a show that only has 5 or six performances.
Over the next year we will be looking for ways of improving our judges assignment and ballot collection system so that we might be able to recognize productions with fewer performances.
- Total production budget must be less than $40,000 (between $0 and
We know that most Off-Off-Broadway productions have budgets of less than $15,000. However there are some Off-Off-Broadway productions that have larger budgets.
As we started this process we wanted to be as inclusive of the entire community as possible. The point was brought up by many members of the community that we should not punish or neglect some great Off-Off-Broadway theatre companies, most of whom have a long history and have helped to establish this community, simply because they have larger budgets.
We felt that it was better to err on the side of being more inclusive than less and we wanted to allow for growth within our industry.
- Ticket price must be $30 or less (between "Free" and $30).
This qualification sparked the most heated of all the debates.
The standard price of an Off-Off-Broadway ticket is around $15. This dollar amount stems from the Equity Showcase Code that limits the ticket price to $18 (unless you are a “Season Producer”, in which case you can charge $20). However there are many Off-Off-Broadway companies that don’t produce Equity productions and have set their ticket prices higher.
Again we felt that it was better to err on the side of being more inclusive than less, and we wanted to allow for growth within our industry.
- Performances must be in Manhattan, Brooklyn or Queens.
We plan to open the awards up to the other boroughs, but we need to grow carefully. We started in Manhattan, then added Queens, then Brooklyn. However we definitely have plans to eventually include all five boroughs.
- Producers must be based in the five boroughs of New York City.
This is our way of keeping the awards within the Off-Off-Broadway community, those people who live and work in NYC.
- The production must comply with all New York laws and all applicable
This is strictly for legal purposes.
- The IT Awards registration process must be completed at least three weeks
prior to opening.
This is based simply on logistics. In order for us to have enough lead time to assign and confirm the judges, we need three weeks.
Each new season is an opportunity for us to refine the process and learn how to better serve this community. We will always be improving the system, making changes to the awards and working to develop a better way to bring recognition to Off-Off-Broadway.