STORY isn't built off the backs of an existing production team or facility. Everything we do rises from the venue like a phoenix in the desert. One very expensive phoenix. But our biggest advantage is our limitations.
I can't imagine what it would be like to have an unlimited production budget... or speaker budget... or creative budget. I wouldn't even know what to do with that.
And yet we attract a who's who of creative influencers across the country because we're breaking new ground with this principle of restraint...
First, write the rules. Then be creative.
In other words, we create the "toolbox" before we create the programming elements. We decide what production capabilities we'll have before we create anything. This creates limitations, but also new, unforseen possibilities.
Last year, when I walked into the Chicago cathedral, I immediately made a rule that we wouldn't use video screens. Instead, we'd use the cathedral's vaulted ceilings as a projection surface. Showing videos wasn't an option, but it was the perfect space to create mouth-dropping environmental projection.
Our creators are like unbridled stallions. I have to work really hard to keep them from turning everything up to "eleven." The prevailing form of event production is the currently touring rock show. So ours is not.
They go Coldplay. So we go Broadway.
Hear me out on this. It takes guts to give yourself restraints. But when it works, it's powerful. And you'll be found not copying culture, but creating it.