By: Dan Culhane, USITT President

Can you feel the excitement? The Louisville Conference is less than two weeks away and it is shaping up to be USITT’s largest ever with a record number of both attendees and exhibitors.

For me, this Conference is especially meaningful because it will be my first since becoming USITT President. My schedule is already packed full with opening session, meetings, visits to the show floor and sessions. But as I think now of my past Conferences, whether as a student or theater professional, I realize that my schedule was always full. I was always running from session to session and often frustrated at having to choose between two interesting sessions scheduled at the same time.

I remember one Conference when I partnered with a like-minded friend. We planned our session schedule together, splitting up our choices and sharing our notes afterward so that neither would miss out on information.

We are all busy. But I hope that Conference time is also a time removed from the daily stresses of home and work. A time to reengage with the ideas and people that drew us to the theater and entertainment world in the first place. I encourage you to make time to join a friend or colleague for lunch or dinner or drinks. Make time and step out of your comfort zone to engage a new friend. Expand your mind and your network. With this Conference shaping up to be the most attended ever, odds are good that you will see an old friend or mentor. Take the time to tell them how much you appreciate their support and guidance.

Time is flying. Back your bags. And I’ll see you in Louisville.