As well as a full complement of main productions, we also stage between four and six Studio Productions per year. A Studio Production is a small scale production, and differs from a main show in several ways.
A studio production has almost no budget, so is performed with very limited use of set, lights, props or costume. This can be great, as it really lets you focus on the storytelling, and makes the director and actors much more inventive. They run for only one night, and are for members only to view.
The actors generally rehearse for two weeks or less, and the performance is usually done with the actors holding their script. Although this would seem at first glance to ruin the show, one of the marvellous things about a studio production is that within a few minutes of watching one, the audience almost completely forget the scripts.
Studio performances are a great place to experiment safely; new directors can try their hand, we can try out scripts that we wouldn't necessarily want to try as full productions, or we can just experiment with technique.