By: Ron Procopio, USITT Expo Director
They say that only death and taxes are inevitable. I would add growth to that list. We’ve watched the Stage Expo grow in my seven years from 30,000 square feet and 190 companies to 60,000-plus square feet 330-plus companies at USITT19. There are many reasons for this growth, such as our greater outreach and promotions and letting the industry know what you, our membership and attendees, are working on. It’s you that these exhibiting companies want to meet. You — the designers and purchasers of today and tomorrow.
One of the most interesting parts of my job is working in the various segments of our industry. As a former New England stagehand for eight years, I was very familiar with rigging, lighting, sound, and video. But costuming, makeup, architecture, and software … not so much. It’s been a lot of fun learning about each of these areas. I’ve met industry-leading costume designers and had tours of scene shops around the country. Our industry is truly remarkable both on a giant scale of an assembled production down to the smallest detail that’s undetectable unless you’re just inches away.
The 2019 Stage Expo is going to be big — and that might be the largest understatement of the year. We’ve had to expand the Expo floor three times since last March. The exhibitors are excited. Many of them growing their booth space to show you more of what they can offer. Not only are they growing in size, but this year we have 39 new companies (to date!) joining us in Louisville. That’s because they’ve heard about you! These companies know what you are doing and are excited to be part of your productions and industry.
Some of them you may have seen before at a Stage Expo years ago, but most are trying us out for the first time. Check out their websites. Visit their booths. Listen to what they have to offer. A tradeshow is a marketplace where networking, career building, and viewing the latest and greatest in the industry come to life. It takes two things to make a trade show work: people interested in seeing products and services and companies offering products and services. We are thrilled to continue to be the marketplace for your industry.
Meet the 39 new companies exhibiting at USITT19:
- American Duchess
- Graftobian Make-Up Company
- Necessity’s Inventions
- Red Threaded
- Sawyer Creek Artistry
- Vogue Fabrics
- Indiana University
- New York School of Interior Design
- Pace University
- Rider University
- Ryerson School of Performance
- The Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts
- University of Virginia
- Actors Theatre
- All Access Staging and Production
- KadaN Productions, Inc
- Live! Technologies
- Rock The House Audio Visual
- Stagedoor Manor
- Troika Entertainment
- Virginia Repertory Theatre