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2021  Fertile Ground FAQs

1. Festival Overview

2. What are the Participation Qualifications?

3. Why is the Festival Curated This Year and How Do I Apply?

4. My Project Has Been Accepted, What Next?

5. Will there be Festival Passes this Year?

6. How many slots are available?

7. How does the Participant/ Fertile Ground Partnership work?

8. What is Expected of me as a Participant?

9. Can I hire AEA Actors in my Fertile Ground Piece?

10. Who are the Fertile Ground Contacts?

Application Deadline 9/4/20 at 5pm. LATE Submissions will not be accepted. 

Ready to Apply? Click HERE!

1. Festival Overview

The Fertile Ground Festival will be held January 28-February 7, 2021.

In it's 12th year as a city-wide festival of new works, Fertile Ground is brought to you by the Portland Area Theatre Alliance, a non-profit, volunteer organization dedicated to increasing the quality, quantity and professionalism of theatre produced in Portland and the surrounding areas. 

This year's Fertile Ground will be a virtual event. Pre-recorded “acts of creation” submitted by producing organizations and artist-producers will be live-dropped at scheduled intervals over the course of the 11-day festival, and streamed on Fertile Ground’s Facebook and YouTube channels. 

Diverging from the past 11 years, FG21 will be curated with attention to the inclusion of under-represented communities, a desire to select interesting and culturally relevant “acts of creation,” and projects that pay specific attention to an innovative concept for a recorded piece on a digital media platformFertile Ground is seeking submissions from a wide range of artists on a variety of topics and welcomes an array of artistic genres and disciplines.  

A curation panel has been formed, comprised of artists whose identities encompass a spectrum of underrepresented voices, along with Fertile Ground and PATA representatives. This decision-making body will curate Fertile Ground 2021. 

2. What are the Participation Qualifications?

The festival offering should be a new work, or a significant reimagining, from a local artist using local actors/creative team on the project.

Each participant is responsible for producing their own event. Fertile Ground acts as an umbrella for publicity, marketing and consulting support.  

3. Why is the Festival Curated this year and How do I Apply?

The Fertile Ground Festival will be a virtual event this year, with a limited number of scheduled slots. Organizers are intent on fostering a festival that is more inclusive of and conducive to the participation of underrepresented communities. Therefore, a curatorial panel has been instituted that is comprised of individuals whose identities encompass a spectrum of underrepresented voices, along with Fertile Ground and PATA representatives. This group's charge is to select interesting and culturally relevant “acts of creation,” and projects with an innovative concept for a recorded piece intended for a digital media platform.

To Apply, Download the Application and email to fertileground@portlandtheatre.com by 9/4/2020 at 5:00pm. We request that artists/producers submit their ONE best concept for Fertile Ground curation consideration. No Late Applications will be Accepted!

Producers will be notified of acceptance into the festival by 9/19/2020.

4. My Project has been accepted, what's next? 

Register for the festival with the $100 Registration Fee and submit a signed Hold Harmless Agreement no later than 9/28/20.  NO Late Registrations will be accepted. 

As confirmation of your registration, you will receive a unique link that is a designated folder for your project only.

You'll use that folder to upload:
  • Project Description of 200 words (or less)
  • Marketing Image for your project
  • A Donation link to receive donations (*see next section for details)
  • Press Photos 
  • A Recording of your Fertile Ground event to be streamed during your festival time slot.
The Fertile Ground team will guide you through the details of these steps, and timelines, after acceptance into the festival.

5. Will there be Festival Passes this year?

In lieu of Festival Pass Sales, Fertile Ground will be asking for Festival Pass Donations.  A donation entitles the "Passholder" to receive event reminders, and other exclusive communication.

*After the launch of the festival, all donors and audience members will be directed to YOUR donation link. We will promote donations throughout the run of the festival. 

6. How many slots are available ?

While we are working hard to finalize every last detail, we are still crossing our t's in this category. We estimate there will be roughly 25 total slots available. 

7. How does the Participant / Fertile Ground Partnership work?

Festival participants independently produce their own recorded projects. Fertile Ground is a marketing umbrella, offers ongoing education, and acts as a resource for producers. Fertile Ground is not legally liable in any way for your event. Here are some ways Fertile Ground supports you as a producer: 

 Festival Website

  • Your project is listed on the Festival website
  • You supply the listing, description, photo/image, donation link and link to project website.

Public Relations  & Marketing

Media Relations

  • Your project is included in festival press materials distributed to local, regional, national media

Social Media

  • Your project receives support via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.  

Marketing Outreach

  • As opportunities arise, your project is included in special events, community partnerships, etc.

Workshops and Roundtable resource events

Fertile Ground offers informational gatherings, workshops and networking opportunities in the months leading up to Fertile Ground. Past events have included a three hour PR & Marketing Bootcamp, a Meet the Press night and a hands-on Box Office Tickets/Passes workshop. We are still in the formulation phase of how these (and other) events will transform in a virtual environment.

General Support

Fertile Ground has a volunteer staff to support you, answer your questions and provide a helping hand. If you have a specific inquiry, please refer to the “Contact” section below.

8. What is Expected of me as a Participant this year?

Festival Promotion Expectations

  • Promote Festival Pass Donations. This year, donations are how we will be able to produce the festival. Please share all Festival Pass Donation correspondence with your networks!
  • Include the Fertile Ground Festival logo on your marketing materials, digital ads and printed material.
  • Include a descriptive sentence and web url for Fertile Ground in all media releases related to your production. Individual producer media releases are highly encouraged.
  • Include a logo or a description of the festival on your website linking to the Fertile Ground website www.fertilegroundpdx.org.
  • Promote your show in conjunction with Fertile Ground to your mail or e-mail list, social media, etc.

Communications Expectations

  • Meet or precede all festival and submission deadlines.
  • Provide complete, accurate information in the format requested (the first time).

9. Can I hire SAG-AFTRA/AEA actors in my Fertile Ground piece?

Producers who are interested in hiring SAG-AFTRA/AEA members need to sign SAG-AFTRA/AEA members to an appropriate SAG-AFTRA/AEA contract.  They should contact Ethan Schwartz, Field Representative at eschwartz@actorsequity.org or the local SAG-AFTRA office at portland@sagaftra.org.

10. Who are the Fertile Ground Contacts?

  • Contact Dre Slaman, Managing Director with any registration questions.
  • Contact Nicole Lane, Festival Director with all other questions.

                   FERTILE GROUND TEAM

Nicole Lane, Festival Director

Dre Slaman, Managing Director

Sara Jean Accuardi, Committee Chair (PATA Board Member, Secretary)

Matthew Miller, Committee Member (PATA Board Member, Vice President)

Open, Social Media Manager

Jessica Gleason, Website & Graphic Design

Gary Corbin, Festival Pass Coordinator/BOT Specialist

Jenni Green-Miller, Volunteer Coordinator

Maddie Odegaard, Marketing Assistant

Lilo Alfaro, Fertile Ground Archivist

Chris Rentzel, Photographer

Trisha Mead, Founder

Committee at large:  Carol Kimball, Nancy Matthews, Karen O'Donnell Stein, Scott Stephens






    Portland Area Theatre Alliance

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