Hello, AEP!

Hi AEP-ers,

I’m Courtney, an intern who’s going to be posting periodically on this blog. But before I start filling the blogosphere with my thoughts on different art forms and cool happenings, I thought I’d tell you a few things about myself. I graduated from Goucher College in May and three weeks later I moved from Ohio to NYC.

I’m a dancer, choreographer and photographer. I’ve always been charmed with bygone eras. I guess that accounts for how much I loved my Tuscan study abroad experience; plus, imagining myself in a different time was easier when I was surrounded by ancient buildings. It also explains why I’m fascinated with the digitization of nearly every aspect of our lives but find comfort in choosing analog. At times, I prefer the physicality that accompanies certain experiences. For example, I could spend an hour browsing Amazon to buy a new book for my Kindle. But, I’d prefer to spend that hour in an actual bookstore: handling various books, smelling their particular smell, hearing the pages rustle. I think the physical response that this, among many other experiences, elicits is what keeps us engaged in an increasingly digital world.

In fact, part of the reason I accepted this internship is due to the focus on audience engagement at AEP and Misnomer Dance Theater. Early into college, I was able to see how engaging an audience creates a positive impact. The dance department hosts open rehearsals at the end of every guest artist’s 10 day residency. During them, the audience gets the opportunity to preview the work as well as ask questions to the artist and dancers. These events provided me with opportunities to see more than just the work- I was drawn into the story behind it. We also were encouraged to ask more personal questions to the artists. Learning more about the artist provided insight into the work that would have otherwise gone unnoticed.

What about you? What experiences make you react strongly? Are you interested in the preservation of pre-digital forms? Is there a way for both to coexist or are certain things headed for obscurity? Can you think of a time when you felt particularly engaged with an artist or art form? I would love to hear from you!

You can post a comment or email me here: Courtney

Looking forward to hearing from you, Courtney

Sep. 14, 2011, Filed under category Announcements, team



We did it!

We finally arrived at our site name for AEP!  The site name is…. GoSeeDo!

I never though of naming as a difficult task. I have named kids. Pets. Dance moves. It has never been a problem. But coming up with a name for the public facing brand of AEP… that was a challenge.

We had been looking for a  name that would be easy for the public to remember and inspire a sense of action and involvement among people coming to have new experiences with the arts. There are two ways that the public interested with the platform, either through a direct relationship with a particular artists, or to the central site’s public discovery interface where people can find new ways to engage with artists. The name needed to work for both.

I don’t know exactly how many hours were spent on domain search sites or how many names we discussed, evaluated, and dismissed. Some were too adventurous. Others too meek. Some were too forward. Others too elusive.  Needless to say, when we finally emerged with a name that most everyone on the team and of the 20+ people we surveyed liked, I was thrilled.

We’re now phasing in the branding to reflect the name. This starts working on the visual identity, and the first step is deciding on a logo. I had expected the logo process to be harder than the naming process. But so far it is an incredibly fun and fluid experience.

I’d like to share the initial set of logo designs that we looked at. Take a look. See what you think. And let us know which one you would pick or any feedback you have.

Oh yeah – let us know what you think of the name as well 🙂



Sep. 1, 2011, Filed under category Announcements, blog


The Wireframe Preview Show – Part 1


…to our very first first wireframe preview!  In a few moments, I’m going to dive in and start taking you through some of the improvements that we’ve been working on for the past few months. But before I do that, I want to take a second to let you know that sharing these wireframes is only the first step in a big push to open our process to the community at large.

The whole point of this project is to increase artist and audience engagement. That said, it’s kind of funny that we have been criticized – somewhat fairly – for not doing enough to let people know what we are working on. Starting with this post, that’s all changed. Our new process moving forward will be:

  1. More open. We will let you know what we want to do so you can let us know what you think.
  2. More collaborative. Your feedback will help to guide and shape the development of the platform.
  3. More effective.  By working together, we will create the tools you need for your art to succeed.

Okay… let’s go!

Home Page

Home Page – Before

The current home page is going to get a nice revamp. Right now, it features a lot of marketing and help material. But if you want to see actual artist offerings, you need to click on the “Explore” tab at the top.

Figure 1: Click the explore tab to see artist events

Home Page – After

We want to change the home page  to put the artist offerings up front and center. Instead of having to click on explore, you start out by seeing all the amazing experiences on the site.

We have dedicated a lot more real estate to featuring offerings, which should drive more traffic to your offering and artist pages. And, we have incorporated a layout that should translate nicely to mobile and tablet based devices when we start to target those down the road.


 Figure 2: Home Page Wireframe

You may notice a couple things on this page. First off, at the top, it says “Name”… that’s because we have officially selected the  brand for our platform. Some of you may already know what it is, but for the rest, stay tuned! We will be making an announcement this week, and we will be showing you all the cool logo treatments that we have been looking at!

Dash Board

Let’s start off the dashboard discussion by looking at a letter we got on GetSatisfaction:

Hi All - 
the design of the "organization dashboard" needs some work.
The current design means I get to the page and see numbers in a big font, and what 
I have done in tiny letters... with the only clickable that has a name being the last 
thing I worked on.I'm often going in to see something else - not the last thing - even 
just wondering "ok, what have I done?" 

Currently it takes around 3-4 clicks to get to a draft or list of what I've 
completed/am working on - seems like a lot.

Figure 3: Numbers in big font, What I have done in tiny letters

We agreed with everything this letter said, so we changed the organizational dashboard to make it a lot more streamlined.

Org Dashboard Main Page

Below is a draft of the main organizational dash page. Keep in mind this is no work of art yet, but all the functional components are there and you will be able to see our thinking.


The first thing we did was to separate things into tabs. The main tabs that are available are:

  • Home – This takes you back to your main personal dashboard
  • Following – Shows you all of the artists, experiences and collections you are following on the site
  • Learn – One stop access to our learning center, where you can get help, ask questions, and learn how things work
  • Add Account – This tab lets you add organizations to your account. When you first join, you have an individual account. But in order to create experiences, you need to add organizational account. This is where you do that
  • Organizational Tabs – Every organization you have will get its own tab, where we store all the information related to that organization. More below.

Organizational Tabs

We created these so that if you have more than one organization that you are managing, everything related to that organization will be in one place. When you click on an organizational tab, you get the following options:

  • Create – Your one stop shop to create new experiences to offer to your audience
  • Promote – Go here to promote your existing offerings using email, social networking, and offline methods.
  • Measure – Get statistics on your visitors, fans, offerings and more
  • Portfolio – Addressing the letter we quoted above, this is where you will be able to see everything you have done
  • Profile – View and manage your organizations profile on the site
  • Settings – This is where you can adjust the individual options on the site

Create Button

Another complaint on the site was how to create events. There is a giant “Create” button at the top of the current site, but if you click it, it takes you to your dashboard. A lot of peole asked about this, and we agree that the way we have it set up right now is confusing.

We have changed that so that the big create button is still there, but when you click it, it takes you to a page where you actually can create the offering. More on that below.

Promote Button

In addition to creating events, we have made the ability to promote your events much more prominent. The goal here is to make it easy for you to promote your wonderful offerings to your audiences so that you can get more fans, more buzz and more success.

The Latest

This is where you will get all of your notifications related to a single organization. It’s all placed right in the middle, so that as soon as you visit your organization, you can see what is going on. We also have handy stats available in the “At a Glance” section.

Org Dashboard – Create

When you click on the “Create” button, you will come to the create page. The first thing you will see is a list of possible offerings.

 You can either create an offering from scratch, or you can select existing offerings and copy them. To help get you started, we will make a bunch of cool templates that you can copy.

But a great feature here is that you can also copy offerings from other artists, or create and share your own with the community. This lets you leverage successful offerings of other artists, and lets you help your fellow artists learn from your success as well.

If you are not sure about what kind of offering you should make, we let you see what other people are doing, and we let you know which offerings are popular at the moment. We also have an extensive learning center that you can use if you need to learn about an offering. We will preview that in another post.

Create Form

Once you select the type of experience you want to create, you will be taken to this form where you can edit and customize it. We have designed this form so that, visually, it looks like what your visitors will see when they come to the site. That means it should be more intuitive and easier for you to use.

Lots of stuff on this page, so Ill just go over some of the features:

  • Easily upload images and embed media into the page
  • Edit all of the page elements in place, so you know where it will go and how it will look when you publish it
  • Add a sponsor to your offering
  • One-click ability to add and remove options from the page
  • Fully integrated help system makes sure that you can easily create experiences and get help if you need it

More to come…

These are a few of the changes that we are considering based on your feedback and input. Please let us know what you think of them. You can reach us by:

Contacting us on Facebook
Talking to us on Twitter
Giving feedback at GetSatisfaction

 Or, if you want to talk to me directly, my email address is rob [-at] aeplatform [-dot] org.

Stay tuned… in the coming days we will:

  • Announce Our New Name!!!
  • Show you some AWESOME logo treatments
  • And release more wireframes


Thank you for reading this. Thank you for creating and appreciating art. And I hope to talk to you soon.



Product Manager, AEP

Aug. 24, 2011, Filed under category Announcements


A Letter to Artists


Hold on to your seats! For the past few months we have been working with you to create a platform that you can use to increase your offerings and your audience engagement. We have learned a great deal in that time, and based on that, we are ready to take the platform to the next level.

If we haven’t met yet, let me start by introducing myself. My name is Rob. I am the product manager for AEP. Along with the rest of the team, I have been working feverishly for the past few months to make the platform great. And I feel like that hard work has finally paid off.

We have a bunch of new and exciting ideas we would like to share with you. So, starting next week, we will be posting them to the site in order to get your feedback. You will see:

      – Beautiful Logo Designs
     – New and Wonderful User Interfaces
      – Streamlined Processes
      – And more

We want you to take a look at these ideas and let us know what you think. If you love them, tell us what you love about them. If you hate them, let us know why. See something we missed? We want to know.

Your feedback has been invaluable up to this point, and it is an essential ingredient in order to make a truly valuable platform that can help artists succeed.To that end, we will be increasing the transparency of our processes across the board. Posting the proposed new designs will be our first step.

Having said that, I want to take a moment to thank you. Thank you for participating in this project. Thank you for you helping us improve the platform. But most importantly, thank you for being an artist and for creating art.

There is an excess of many things in this world. Art is not one of them.



Aug. 22, 2011, Filed under category blog


Make Art Through Making Art

Broadway Producer, Ken Davenport posted a blog that relates directly to one of AEP’s goals: to help artists use their art to support and produce more art. You can read his full post here, but below is an excerpt that is right up the same alley as what we’re helping you do through AEP.


If you’ve got a product that already has market interest, another way to boost that interest is to create supporting products that might appeal to either a new demographic, or more importantly, your core demo. That group is desperate to consume as much information as they can about who you are, what you do, and where you come from.

So once you have a show that has some traction, take some time to supplement that traction with a history book, a mini doc, or something else that might make money on its own . . . and that supports your primary product.


How does this relate to your work? You can build on your show before it even opens by creating offerings that lead up to your major performance. Take a look at some of the ways AEP artists are building momentum for their shows by creating a Project around it, or supporting performances by giving sneak-peeks or follow-ups.


Aug. 2, 2011, Filed under category blog, Program info


Got Research?

Are you interested in learning about what dance audiences are saying, and what they are interested in? If so, take a look at some research that came out of Dance/USA’s Engaging Dance Audiences. AEP has been a part of the EDA initiative and we wanted to spotlight some of their findings. We’ve excerpted this below, and you can read more on the Dance/USA website. We found it interesting, and hope you will too!


A major component of the Engaging Dance Audiences project is a series of research studies. The studies listed below are part of Dance/USA’s effort to help the dance field explore methods of engaging audiences for dance.



National Survey of Dance Audiences

Dance/USA commissioned WolfBrown to conduct a national survey of dance audiences; the first field-wide survey intended to answer the question, “How do dance audiences want to engage?” The survey was conducted in the summer of 2010 with the help of 42 partners who sent a standardized survey to their dance ticket-buyers. The survey garnered over 7,400 responses from dance audience members across the nation.

Dance/USA members can access the archived webinar on the National Survey of Dance Audiences. Click here.
A list of the 42 member dance presenters and producers who joined this study as partners and sent the survey to their ticket-buyers is available by clicking here.

The Survey of Current Audience Engagement Practices, WolfBrown 

The core goals of this survey were to provide a snapshot of current audience engagement practices occurring in the dance field, and to gather insights about the field’s philosophy towards audience engagement and thoughts on its future role to serve dance. The survey was open to Dance/USA members and non-members. The report covers: types of engagement activities undertaken; barriers faced; planning and responsibility for, and evaluation of, engagement programs; and perspectives on “audience engagement” and “audience development.”




Jul. 14, 2011, Filed under category Uncategorized


Heading to the Dance/USA Conference?

Chris Elam, Jeremy Williams, and Larry Henry from the AEP team are heading out this week to the annual Dance / USA conference, this year hosted in Chicago. If you’ll be there we’d love to see you!

We will be presenting on AEP as a part of the Engaging Dance Audiences (EDA) pre-conference, as well as during the Dance / USA conference. You can check out this link to our EDA project page.

We’ll also be hosting sessions at the smART bar for one-on-one consultations on Thursday and Friday. We will be sure to post a summary of the experience, and if you would like to meet us at the conference you can email Jeremy to set up a time. Looking forward to seeing you there!

The AEP Team



Jul. 11, 2011, Filed under category Uncategorized


Virtually one on one

In 1967, media theorist Marshall McLuhan wrote, “All media are extensions of some human faculty – psychic or physical” meaning that all technology is an extension of man’s natural capabilities. The car is an extension of the foot, tools an extension of the hands, language an extension of expression. Technologies don’t create “new” possibilities, they simply do what we could already do, but better, faster and more efficiently. Now through internet communication tools like Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Skype and Livestream, our options for interaction – especially audience engagement – have increased exponentially.


The Mapping Home series by Kinesis Project has begun incorporating virtual experiences into their creative process, expanding personal interactions. Soon fans will be able to participate in this project through live performances, behind the scenes, and long-distance attendance.


What other types of events and interactions would you like to be a part of? Explore the engagements offered by AEP artists to see how you can expand the horizon of possibilities.




The Audience Engagement Platform




Jun. 25, 2011, Filed under category blog


Summertime and the living is BUSY!

Come see what’s sizzling with AEP artists in NYC this weekend!


Australian-born Musician Alex Carpenter is a versatile artist playing the guitar, keyboard, and electric zither. He is performing tonight, Friday June 17th, with Ella Joyce Buckley, supporting PRONTO (featuring Mikael Jorgensen of Wilco). Carpenter will play a short solo guitar set of his Live Audio Delay System, which envelops the audience with accumulating and resonating sound, then another set accompanying Buckley. Visit his AEP page for more info.


Also performing tonight is Convergences Theatre Collective, a group of artists dedicated to creating original work. Acting Out: Desire provides a unique opportunity to step inside the artistic process of CTC as they prepare their upcoming work, The Desirous Project. The evening will be a presentation of early material, revealing how they are exploring and crafting a deeply sensual conversation, giving a layered insight into the creative processes of CTC. Take a look at this project on AEP.


NYC welcomes back Boston-based company Rebecca Rice Dance after a four year hiatus. They will present a program at the Merce Cunningham Theater tonight and Saturday June 18th. Reviving three works and premiering two more, the evening will present a visual and musical feast with music varying from Bach to the blues. With a prolific blend of modernism and musicality, the performances will both defy gravity and celebrate it. Check out details on their AEP page.




LEIMAY is comprised of both the individual work, and collaborations between Ximena Garnica and Shige Moriya. Their current project, Uncovering, is an exploration into the struggle between societal values and self discovery, bringing to light the nature of life. Performed in two installments at The LAB, the audience is invited to watch the unraveling of a struggle between individual self-conception and social pressures from the sidewalk. Performances will be held through June 25th. Find more info on AEP .


The Audience Engagement Platform. More Art. More Often.



Jun. 17, 2011, Filed under category blog


Spring is in the air and AEP’s artists are springing into action!

Melissa Riker, Artistic Director of Kinesis Project, is presenting “Phase 1: Mapping Home InStudio”- a look into the creative process of their new work in it’s early stages of development.  You can get into the action, but seating is limited so reserve your spot today!  You could also win tickets to a Yankee’s game so don’t forget your raffle ticket.




The event will be held at Gibney Dance Center in one of their newly acquired studios.  Guess what, YOU can also use these studios for rehearsals, classes, and private events!  Check out the beautiful studios in the heart of Manhattan and book your event today!








Jun. 3, 2011, Filed under category Announcements, featured, Program info


A tribute to the inspiring artist Martha Graham

“Dance is the hidden language of the soul.“ – Martha Graham

Today Google pays tribute with a “Google Doodle” animation to the great Martha Graham (1894 – 1991), one of the most important choreographers of the 20th century.

Dedicated to the Arts, she danced and choreographed for over seventy years while receiving several high honors like the Presidential Medal of Freedom throughout her career.

See it today at Google and find out more about the amazing Martha Graham.

May. 11, 2011, Filed under category Uncategorized


On-Demand offerings from Case-Study artists now available

AEP aims to help artist offer “more art, more often” in ways that are unique to them and increase their sustainability. In advance of the public launch, an early team of Case-Study Artists have published an inspiring mix of “On-Demand” experiences, where their fans can engage with their work in new ways.  As the name implies, these experiences will happen when a fan books it, making opportunities available that they never knew were possible.  No need to wait for your favorite artist’s next live show any more!

These artists have created unique experiences, customized for their fans to provide a personalized entrance into what makes their work distinctive. The suite of experience types, designs and features for the artists to use will keep growing alongside the community of artists. Current On-Demand Experiences include: performance parties, original choreography, custom designs, private coaching, and many others!

So come take a look at what they have to offer!

Mar. 21, 2011, Filed under category blog