We are proud to announce that the 33rd TCG National Conference (virtual and in-person) will take place in Chicago, IL from June 20th to 22nd, 2024, in association with the League of Chicago Theatres.

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TCG is grateful to the following supporters of the 
TCG 2024 National Conference: Chicago

I wonder what it would mean if the metaphor we keep using was real: the field is on fire. (I’m not sure we are a field at all, and, if we are, I’m not sure the whole of it is burning. Or even that every part feels the same heat. But I’m saying, as we do in our art of make-believe, what if?) If it really was on fire...what would I save? 
-Todd London, On Field and Fire

We have always belonged to one another. 
This is how we’ll find unexpected pathways. 
This is how we’ll reconstitute the world.

- Annalisa Dias, Decomposition Instead of Collapse – Dear Theatre, Be Like Soil

In the origin story of Chicago – and its evolution into one of the most vibrant cultural capitals of the world and one that is continually named as The Best Big City in the U.S. – a catalyzing event that transformed the city was the infamous Great Fire of the 19th century. The Fire is now commonly understood as the consequence of poor urban planning, embedded structural flaws that cost hundreds of homes, businesses, and lives. Devastated as it was, the city seized the moment as an opportunity for a rebuilding process that left behind an era of outdated design and resulted in one of the most architecturally advanced cityscapes and culturally eclectic epicenters of the modern era. The lore of Chicago’s history and rebirth reveals a useful recipe for metamorphosis: a healthy dose of grit, a splash of ingenuity, a penchant for collaboration, and a will to always do better by its people.

The story of Chicago echoes the story of our field – comprising many stories – that we are still telling. “The field is on fire,” we say, and we stay. As antiquated structures smolder around us, we seize the moment as one of possibility, we look around, and we try to determine what we will save. From June 20-22, 2024, TCG and the League of Chicago Theatres will welcome theatre practitioners to the City of the Big Shoulders, where together we will answer the call of possibility, design new tools, and get to worldbuilding. We will take inspiration from Chicago’s energetic and diverse theatre community to scaffold new structures and begin telling our stories anew. We will work, we will play, and we will visit new places; at our first national gathering in two years, and our second hybrid Conference, TCG’s in-person programming will burst out of the confines of a hotel, and disperse into the city’s many cultural venues, historical sites, and hubs of creative innovation. Keep an eye out for both in-person and virtual registration to launch in November, and join us in June (with your sleeves rolled up).  

For information about sponsorships and exhibitor prices, please contact Danika Tablante, Institutional Philanthropy Manager, at [email protected].

TCG's proposal form to submit conference content ideas was available until October 30, 2023 and is now closed. If you have a programming idea you'd like to submit, please contact Devon Berkshire, Director of Fieldwide Programming, at [email protected].

About the TCG National Conference

The TCG National Conference is one of the largest nationwide gatherings of the not-for-profit theatre community. TCG has been gathering folks this way since 1976 and each year, the National Conference creates space for theatre practitioners across the globe to get inspired, learn from one another and build toward collective action. It’s also been a way for TCG and the field to get intimately familiar with theatre communities around the country, and to channel the particular energy of their artists.

In 2020, while we supported the field in contending with overlapping existential crises, TCG also completed a new strategic planning process. In our new plan, bolstered by our new mission to lead for a just and thriving theatre ecology, we’ve committed to centering the needs and experiences of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous People of Color) and BITOC (Black, Indigenous, Theatres of Color) throughout our programming. With that ongoing work in mind, it is our goal that our conferences will have some, if not all, of the following outcomes:

  • Participants come away with new ideas and tools for activating models of collective care.
  • BIPOC, TGNC, disabled, and young theatre practitioners see more opportunities for leadership and collaboration open to them throughout the field.
  • Incremental yet transformative shifts in power structures and organizational practices begin to emerge in theatres across the country, and those shifts begin to create safer, human-centered working conditions for our freelance artists.
  • The local theatre community builds off their shared work on the TCG Conference into a longer term, inclusive process of peer support and collaboration, and host city artists are invited to bring their work into other regional theatre communities.

In 1976, TCG convened its first ever National Conference. For the first few decades, the National Conference was biennial, held first on college campuses and then in cities across the country. In 2006, the National Conference became an annual event, and in 2020, we went virtual in response to the pandemic. In 2022, we held our first-ever hybrid National Conference, gathering in Pittsburgh, PA and online.

Please contact TCG's Conference Team at [email protected] with any questions.