#9 – Why is Theatre More Important Now Than Ever? with Victoria Bailey

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Victoria Bailey, Executive Director of the Theatre Development Fund (TDF), speaks with Hal about making the arts welcoming for all audiences. She and Hal discuss the beauty of a child’s first visit to Broadway, how producers can support contemporary American playwrights, and the healing power of storytelling.

Victoria Bailey has been the executive director of TDF since 2001. The not-for-profit organization is dedicated to bringing the performing arts to everyone. TDF sustains live theatre and dance by engaging and cultivating a broad and diverse audience and eliminating barriers to attendance and envisions a world where the transformative experience of attending live theatre and dance is essential, relevant, accessible, and inspirational. TDF fulfills its mission by expanding access through ticketing, accessibility, and information initiatives; by cultivating communities through school and community engagement programs and by supporting theatre makers through training, professional development programs, and national audience research.

Highlights of Ms. Bailey’s tenure included playing a key role in the construction of the award winning new TKTS booth at Duffy Square, expansion of TDF’s award winning education programs, and the introduction of sensory friendly Broadway performances. Ms. Bailey recently completed a national research project in co-partnership with Brad Erickson from Theatre Bay Area titled Triple Play, examining ways to strengthen the relationship between playwrights, theatres, and audiences as a means to increase audience appetite for new and risky work. Previously, she was instrumental in the execution of a comprehensive study of the lives of American playwrights and the production of new American Plays. The study culminated in Outrageous Fortune: The Life and Times of the New American Play.

Prior to her appointment at TDF, she had a nearly 20-year association with Manhattan Theatre Club. Ms. Bailey is Theatre Management and Producing Advisor and Adjunct Professor at the School of the Arts at Columbia University, and a member of the board at the Times Square Alliance. She recently completed a three-year term on the Tony Awards Nominating Committee. Ms. Bailey received a B.A. in history from Yale College.

TDF is the only not-for profit organization dedicated to serving the entire spectrum of the performing arts with programs that touch the lives of millions of New Yorkers and visitors each year. Learn more about TDF’s programs and outreach at tdf.org or on Instagram @tdfnyc.

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Have a question for Hal or a topic you’d like him to explore? Send Hal an email at broadwaybiz@halluftig.com.

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