An Introduction for Tour Coordinators

A Midsummer Night's Dream

The National Touring Selector is a networking tool for the performing arts touring industry, primarily in Australia and New Zealand at present. If you are an individual or company that develops and manages performing arts tours,  you can register as a Tour Coordinator. National Touring Selector tour coordinators can register an account that gives them access to the National Touring Selector website and work with assigned production company profiles and production listings and view their activity in rounds.

  1. Step 1 - Register a user account
    Take some time to include as much information about your ‘professional self’ and an image, as this is your ‘public face’ when communicating and networking with other members within the site. Once we receive your application we will check it through and make sure the basic information is in order and that you have applied in the relevant category. Your account will then be activated and you will receive an email confirming this. This should take less than 2 days. Once your account is active, you can login and begin to build your profiles via the Members area.
  2. Step 2 - Create a tour coordinator profile
    This gives an overview of your company and describes the way you participate in performing arts touring. Again, be sure to include as much relevant information about your company and an images or logo, as this is how your company is represented to other members. Once you have set up your profile you can add other users who will be able to edit and manage your National Touring Selector content and who will also receive news and other information updates.
  3. Step 3 - access producer profiles and production lists
    Producers can nominate your company as their tour coordinator or via their producer profile. Once this is done you will have access to their profile to assist with reviewing and editing and you can track the activity of productions in rounds.
  4. Step 4 - Track productions in a round
    Rounds give producers the opportunity to offer up their latest works for touring and presenters an opportunity to invite those productions that they wish to include in their programs. 
    Once you are registered, you can access information about producers, other tour coordinators, presenters and venues all around Australia. You will also receive updates of touring industry information and events. Tour coordinators can also set and manage tailored voting rounds on National Touring Selector. If you'd like to set up a round for your state or for a particular project contact the site administrator.

The Members section of the site is your National Touring Selector 'virtual office'. Use Members to manage and update profiles and listings and to track shortlisting rounds.

The Process for Tour Coordinators
National Touring Selector is purpose built with tour coordinators in mind. Via the National Touring Selector, tour coordinators have access to information about production companies and their shows and presenting organisations and their venues. National Touring Selector is also set up to run touring product selection via voting rounds. Any tour coordinator can establish a round that you are wanting to collect presenter interest for, you will need to be in contact with the site administrator to learn how and please note that there is a fee for this service. Rounds already run alongside national touring forums (previously known as Long Paddock), Shows on the Go in WA and recently independently of a marketplace as Online Only rounds, Other rounds can also be established for location or art-form specific touring selection.

Rounds
Rounds are established by touring coordinators to assist with market place event and touring selection. Rounds are usually open to all producers registered on the National Touring Selector, however some specialist rounds will be by invitation only. Presenters can view the production listings in any given round and invite shows they'd like to see at the market place. After the market place presenters invite which productions they'd like to program into their venues. If a production that is assigned to you is successful, at the end of a round you will have a list of presenters who are committed to presenting your show as part of a tour. Previously, the most established rounds werre those taking place twice a year in the lead up to Playing Australia funding deadlines, with productions gaining the most interest being invited to pitch at a marketplace (previously known as Long Paddock).

Tour Development
Once a number of presenters have expressed interest in your production, the process of tour development can begin. This involves creating an itinerary for a tour that takes in as many presenters and their venues as possible. A budget is also created that covers the relevant producer fees with a series of fees (sell-off fees) paid by presenters. A separate budget is usually created to cover touring costs (travel, accommodation, freight, living away allowances etc). Some producers carry out their own tour development and tour coordination. It is also possible to develop and deliver tours without funding or for a producer to hire a series of venues and mount a tour at their own financial risk.

Other Pathways
It's worth noting that there are other pathways to performance beyond this model. These include: various state touring forums such as Showcase Victoria, SAPA & Circuit West Showcases and Shows on the Go in WA; direct arrangements with regional and metropolitan venues many of whom are represented by APACA; and working with other touring models such as Critical Stages, Performing Lines and 6PAC or similar consortia of venues. However, if you decide to pursue these possibilities we do recommend you take some time to talk to colleagues and contacts, including NTS Moderators and state based Touring Agencies, to gather a good range of advice.

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