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Theater-in-the-Round: Room Set Case Study

When I walked in to MPI’s World Education Congress in Atlantic City last week, I was delighted to see the ballroom set in a theater-in-the-round!  The square stage was smack dab in the middle of the ballroom, elevated by four to six feet, with stairs on opposing ends.  Over the stage, there were four large monitors

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Theater-in-the-Round: Speaking and Presenting Effectively

Note: This is part two of a three part series on Theater-in-the-Round.  Last week, the focus was on staging, this week is on speaking in the round, and then next week will be on having a panel in the round.  Enjoy! Theater-in-the-Round is one of the most difficult staging configurations to speak in.  Where’s the front?  What about the

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How To Set Up a Room for a Large Meeting

Note: This is part one of a three part series on Theater-in-the-Round.  Today, the focus is on staging, next week will be on speaking, and then having a panel in the round.  Enjoy! You walk into the convention ballroom and immediately recognize that this meeting is going to be different.


How to Create Audience-Centered Seating for your Panel Discussions

You walk into the room and see a traditional seating set-up for your panel discussion:  White draped table at the front on a podium, theater-style with two columns of chairs, with a path down the middle.  The overhead screen is at the front in the middle of the room.  Looks pretty good, right?


In Search of the Perfect Chair for Panel Discussions

I stumbled upon a picture of a panel recently and cringed.  The moderator and panelists are sitting on simple, four legged barstools with an itty bitty circular seat.  They look extremely uncomfortable…and I can’t imagine it made for stimulating conversation.


Get Rid of the White, Draped Table at Panel Discussions!

The default panel discussion room set appears to be a long table at the front of the room, draped with a white (or black) tablecloth with skirting.  Corded microphones sitting on a stand are at each panelist position – or between two panelists to share.  The lectern is downstage right (or left).  The audience is