National Conference

National Conference and Theatre Tour

44th National Conference & Theatre Tour

Virtual Event - July 13-15, 2020

2020 National Conference Sponsors

Downtown Austin Courtesy of Geoff Duncan, Visit Austin

LHAT’s 44th National Conference went Virtual July 13, 15, 2020.

It was a Great Success!

560 Participants  ❇  44 speakers  ❇  24 Sponsors  ❇  28 Exhibitors  ❇  7 Time Zones  ❇  4 Countries . . .

ONE LEAGUE. We’re in this Together!

In case you missed it, recordings of the Conference Sessions are now available OnDemand for all LHAT members! (login required)

Click here to view a special thank you video for all of our National Partners and Conference Sponsors who stuck by the League during this challenging time and made this year’s event possible.

Photo by Bob Krist for the PHLCVB

The 43rd National Conference
and Theatre Tour

Sunday, July 14 - Wednesday, 17, 2019
Philadelphia, PA

2019 National Conference

Thank you to everyone who helped make our 43rd National Conference a HUGE success!

Philadelphia is known for many things -- it's the fifth largest city in the U.S. It's the home of the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Reading Terminal Market and the Philadelphia Museum of Art (let's not forget the "Rocky statue and steps!"). And yes, it's where the famous Philly Cheesesteak was born. But the City of Brotherly Love is not only rich in history and culinary delights, it's a town with a strong focus on arts and culture, including a thriving Avenue of the Arts.

More than 325 people from across North America and the United Kingdom attended, including representatives from 108 different historic theatre organizations and close to 80 service provider and supplier firms, in addition to individuals from local preservation agencies, Subscriber members and invited guests.

The optional Pre-conference Theatre Ramble took 51 attendees to visit five theatres in and outside of Philadelphia, including: the Grand Opera House, Wilmington, DE; The Playhouse on Rodney Square, Wilmington, DE; the Ambler Theater, Ambler, PA; the Keswick Theatre, Glenside, PA; , and Plays & Players Theatre, Philadelphia, PA.

Over four days, we provided more than 46 hours of professional development covering Facilities, Operations, Marketing, Fundraising, and Film, in addition to case studies showcasing the best practices of several member theatres. Two in-depth sessions covered "Renovation 101" and "In-House Promoting 101".

On Opening Night, we presented our 2019 Awards for Excellence to these very deserving recipients: Outstanding Historic Theatre Award: Auditorium Theatre in Chicago, IL and Outstanding Individual Contribution Award to Russ Collins, Executive Director of the Michigan Theater Foundation in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

On day two, 46 exhibitors showed off their products and services during the 2.5 hour Annual LHAT Expo.

When the conference was over, attendees were both exhausted and exhilarated by all that they experienced. They left Philadelphia with mounds of information and best practices to apply at their own theatres, not to mention with a whole new network of LHAT peers and friends with whom they can continue to network and share advice throughout the year.

THANK YOU to all of our national partners, sponsors, volunteers, speakers, exhibitors and attendees. Because of all of you, LHAT's most important annual event continues to grow and improve year after year!

About the National Conference & Theatre Tour

The League's annual conference is the largest annual gathering of historic theatre professionals, community leaders, and service providers and suppliers, attracting participants from across the U.S. and Canada for idea sharing and network building. Professionals, volunteers and devotees join together for four days of networking and peer information exchange, tools & techniques sessions, and tours of local historic theatres, plus events, banquets and receptions.

By defining our field, creating a shared vocabulary and identifying best practices, the educational components of the League's annual conference strengthen efforts to sustain historic theatres of various sizes, operating structures and programming philosophies. During theatre tours, docents emphasize how each venue has dealt with the specific challenges of sustaining their operations to serve their communities, now and in the future. The conference takes place in different locations across North America each year.