Sunday, February 15, 2009

What did you do this weekend?

Yesterday a friend asked me what we did this weekend. Aside from some deep cleaning on Saturday and a little reading, below is a list of the highlights of our weekend activities.

Thursday night: In Search of a Midnight Kiss at the Brooks Museum

Friday night: George Wolfe's The Colored Museum at the Hatiloo Theatre

Saturday night: Abundance: Art in Motion by Ballet Memphis at Orpheum Theatre

Sunday afternoon: The Tribute to Pavarotti at the Brooks Museum

So what is the point? Why is what we did important or significant?

Each of the four events we attended represent time spent with what Seth Godin calls "tribes". A tribe is a group of people that share a passion. With today's technology, it is easier than ever to find your tribe no matter how obscure or geographic disbursed. The four tribes I witnessed this weekend had passion for the following indie films, live theater, ballet, and opera. Seth Godin does a great job explaining the concept of tribes and the value of new technology in finding, leading, and growing a tribe. What I witnessed this weekend makes me think Seth is on to something huge and important.
Free download of the audio version of Seth Godin's Tribes

Reallocation of assets, especially in economic uncertainty
When I initially considered the cost of attending four events in four nights, I thought it might be a bit much. After the whole weekend, I realized that I spent less attending these four events than a dinner for two had cost the prior weekend. (In a way, I spread my Valentine's celebration over 4 nights instead of one!) This weekend I did not eat in a restaurant but I did live an abundant life. Maybe a little attention to resource allocation is a way to make up some of the lost ground of this recession. Consider what value services and products offer. Add value to what you offer so that when your customer considers the question of value, you will fare better. Be able to articulate your value unequivocably. I think that more people are going to be searching for value in these times of economic turbulence.

Increased localization and democratization of production can be game changers
The indie film reminds me how deep in our society the tools needed to produce a film have spread. The film I saw on Thursday night had some rough editing and I never heard of any of the actors, but it was an award-winning film that told a great story. And, it was hilarious and makes me laugh just thinking about it even now. (That's of value!)

The live play that we attended was created with all local talent in a very small, quirky venue. I thought it offered tremendous value when compared to the large touring Broadway productions that come to the larger, more socially accepted theater.

I perceived the ballet as the most old school of the events from my weekend with regards to structure. The ballet company is a labor-intensive operation and performed this weekend in the most traditional venue in town, which I am sure is very expensive to rent. Frequently Ballet Memphis dances in smaller nontraditional venues. It is a local company and, as was the case this weekend, Ballet Memphis often dances to locally conceived and choreographed pieces. It also frequently dances to music that is not traditional ballet fare. I see the use of local flavor and non-traditional elements as an purposeful attempt to remain relevant to the marketplace and open dance more interesting to wider audiences.

The opera film takes the opposing side of local. While Memphis does have a local opera company, I don't think its several performances a year satiate the local opera tribe. The Brooks used technology to offer to the opera tribe a world class performance from half way around the world. I heard talk among the audience of driving over 100 miles to Little Rock, Arkansas to attend opera broadcasts. I remembered reading that The Metropolitan Opera simulcasts in HD its performances to theaters outside of New York.

So, what did you do this weekend? And, what did you think about it? Did you hang with a few tribes like I did, or were you feed creatively as many times over? If not, get with it! Friday will be here again real soon!!!

1 comment:

JJay said...

Sounds like a great weekend.
Good point about skipping dinner, these days we often skip dinner out to work other events into our budget.