Event Proposals

How to Propose an Event

TDPS Faculty, Lecturers, Students, or Staff Members

  • Request support to host a local visiting artist or speaker in a class by applying for an Osborne Grant. Contact Jean-Paul Gressieux, Department Manager: jean-paul@berkeley.edu
  • Request financial or administrative support for a public (non-classroom) event by following the event guide below.

Campus Community Members (Outside TDPS)

Need Help?

Event Proposals & Planning:

Jean-Paul Gressieux

Event Promotion: 

Ben Dillon

Event Proposal Guide for 2020–2021

Read through the guide below before submitting an Event Proposal Form. Please note that all events must be held remotely/online for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021.

The TDPS Events Committee

The TDPS Events Committee

The TDPS Events Committee oversees the processes for proposing, planning, and producing events in the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies. The Events Committee’s activities include:

  • Helping members of TDPS propose public events
  • Reading and vetting event proposals
  • Allocating funding, space, and other resources to approved proposals
  • Helping event organizers run successful events
  • Facilitating feedback after events so that both TDPS and individual organizers can learn from each event

The Events Committee manages resources so that our department puts on a series of high-quality, intellectually and artistically enriching, and lively events each year, within the limits of our budget, personnel, and facilities. Therefore, not every event proposal will be approved every year, and not every approved proposal will receive all of the resources from TDPS that it requests.

The Events Committee includes representatives of the TDPS senate faculty, lecturers, and staff. If you have questions for the Events Committee, please contact Jean-Paul Gressieux, Department Manager: jean-paul@berkeley.edu

Who Can Propose An Event?

Who Can Propose An Event?

Any member of TDPS — senate faculty, lecturers, staff, graduate students, or undergraduate majors/minors — may propose an event.

A lecturer or student who proposes an event must have a member of the Senate Faculty sign on as their official sponsor for the event. The faculty sponsor will be responsible for providing guidance and support in the event planning process.

A graduate student who proposes an event must also have the approval of the Head Graduate Advisor (and, if the student is ABD, their dissertation chair as well) before they submit their proposal. The HGA (and dissertation chair, if applicable) must agree that the graduate student has the time to organize an event, and that the event will not negatively impact the student’s progress towards degree completion. Some graduate students may choose to propose events in order to supplement their research, broaden their professional network, or contribute to their professional development, but event organization is not a requirement of the Ph.D. program.

How to Propose An Event

How to Propose An Event

First, review the Event Proposal Form to get a sense of what we’ll ask about, then consider the following questions.

Why do you want to organize the event, and what you hope the event contributes to the department, the campus, and the community (see “Selection Criteria” section below)?

Who will help you plan the event? When deciding how many co-organizers or volunteers you will need for your event, think about the following questions:

  • Who will receive the food from the caterers, if you are having food delivered?
  • Who will set up the room (put away tables, put out chairs, etc.) before the event, and who will clean up and re-set the room after the event?
  • Who will manage the audience?
  • Who will take care of getting the speaker/artist’s A/V set up and make sure that it works before the event begins?
  • Who will pick up the speaker from their hotel, or meet them on campus, and walk them to the event? Who will walk the speaker back to their hotel or car?

Where and when the event will take place?

  • Before filling out an Event Proposal Form, contact the TDPS Production Office (tdpsspace@berkeley.edu) to ask if the space you want is available at the date and time that you want it, and if it is, ask them to please put a temporary hold on that space for you.
  • Also ask the Production Office what other TDPS productions and events are scheduled to take place around the same time as your event, to determine whether your event will compete against too many other events for audience.

Do you need TDPS to be the “fiscal home” of your event?

  • The “fiscal home” of an event is the department or campus unit that manages all financial transactions that take place associated with the event (i.e. authorization of travel for visitors, payment of speakers’/artists’ honoraria, reimbursements).
  • Because TDPS’s financial manager must dedicate many hours of time to each event for which TDPS is the fiscal home, the Events Comm must be judicious in deciding the number of events for which TDPS can be the fiscal home each year. In some cases, the Events Committee may approve an event proposal, but deny a request that TDPS be the fiscal home for that event. In this case, you or a co-organizer should ask another department or campus unit to be the fiscal home. Every campus event needs to have a fiscal home.
  • If you are requesting that TDPS act as the fiscal home of your event, make sure to check the appropriate box on your Proposal Form.

Who will attend your event?

  • Which TDPS constituents are likely to be interested in the event? (e.g., undergraduates interested in dance? Graduate students working on questions of transnationalism?)
  • Which other Berkeley departments or campus units would you like to attract?
  • Will this be a small event designed to provide audience members with a high degree of interactivity with the visitor?

What will your budget be?

  • Please note that TDPS rarely grants more than $1000 for events.
  • Please make sure to include the following categories in your budget: 

    • Honorarium (generally $500 max)
    • Travel
    • Hotel
    • Any event-related meals
    • Space rental fees (if you are booking a non-TDPS facility)
    • Accessibility considerations (e.g. ASL interpretation, captioning, etc.)

Advising and Consultation:

  • If you are a TDPS undergraduate student, make sure you have a faculty advisor signed on before you fill out a proposal form.
  • If you are a TDPS graduate student, make sure that you have sent a draft of your proposal to the current HGA (and to your dissertation chair, if you are ABD), and that they have agreed that you should move forward with submitting that proposal and that the event planning process will not negatively impact your progress toward your degree, before you fill out a proposal form. On the proposal form, you must indicate that you have received approval from the HGA (and dissertation chair, if applicable).
  • Submit an Events Proposal Form online.
  • The Events Committee will let you know whether your proposal is approved. The Committee may have questions for you, or ask to meet with you, about your proposal while deciding whether to approve it.

The Event Planning Process

The Event Planning Process

  1. Once your proposal is approved, you must attend the scheduled events orientation meeting at which you will receive a checklist for your event planning process, as well as access to a shared Google Drive folder of resources. If you absolutely cannot attend the scheduled orientation meeting, contact Jean-Paul Gressieux and Ben Dillon to discuss alternative arrangements for receiving your checklist. If you have prior experience as an event organizer, this information may be conveyed to you in email rather than in a meeting.

  2. Follow the steps of the checklist and utilize the resources provided. There is important material in these resources regarding:

    • Speaker contact
    • Arranging travel logistics
    • Reserving space or confirming your temporary hold on a TDPS space
    • Communicating with staff
    • Managing your funds (including information about chartstrings, speaker honoraria, and getting reimbursed)
    • Marketing/Publicity
    • Campus permits

  3. Meet with, and email, staff members according to the schedule outlined in your event checklist.

  4. After your event, the Events Committee will ask the staff who worked with you on the event to complete an event evaluation form for the event and your organization of it. The evaluations will be given to you either via email or in a face-to-face debrief meeting.

Selection Criteria

Selection Citeria

The Events Committee considers several departmental goals when reviewing event proposals. Projects may meet a range of goals and objectives, and it’s rare that a project would meet all of the following. We hope that our public programming, in its totality, will hit a range of these objectives. Your proposal should address how your project addresses at least some of the following criteria.

Curricular and departmental integration: How does this project integrate with our curriculum? Does it augment and/or complement and/or expand what we offer? In what ways? Does this project build intellectual community among and between undergrads, grads and/or faculty?

Fulfilling our mission: Which aspects of the TDPS departmental mission and/or University/College of Letters and Science mission does this project address? (Examples: help build convergences between practice and scholarship; represent new research paradigms or agendas; promote liberal arts goals such as helping students find and follow their passion, have knowledge that is both broad and deep, and/or develop a wider skill set or networks for future careers; represent performance as a mode of critical inquiry, a means of a creative expression, and a vehicle for public engagement; serve university-wide priorities and initiatives, such as the Strategic Plan for Equity, Inclusion and Diversity, etc.)

The Mission of TDPS: The Department of Theater, Dance and Performance Studies teaches performance as a mode of critical inquiry, creative expression and public engagement. Through performance training and research, we create liberal arts graduates with expanded analytical, technical and imaginative capacities. As a public institution, we make diversity and inclusion a key part of our teaching, art making and public programming. 

Connections: Does this project help facilitate TDPS connections with other Berkeley departments and/or organizations off campus? What is the nature of the collaboration? What form does it take? Does this project represent outreach with local organizations that will increase awareness of TDPS as a department that is interested in/committed to engaging with a diverse population?

Leadership: Is this project one that is proactive for TDPS, i.e one that is advancing the department’s current projects and priorities? Is your event an example of “leading with vision”?

Impact: Who is the target audience for this event? Which constituencies are most likely benefit from this event, and how will their involvement be solicited? Is this project likely to enhance the visibility of TDPS, and if so, how? Can this event be part of recruiting more folks (students, faculty, the public) into the TDPS fold? If so, how?

Events committee leadership/support: From a curatorial point of view, what are ways that the Events Comm can foster and support this initiative beyond operational aspects (e.g., space, funding, staff time, etc)? If the Events Comm decides to sponsor this event, how can we help the project realize its full potential from a curatorial point of view—e.g., helping the presenter knit the project into the life of our classes, productions, or other projects, etc.? How can we help the project get more buy-in, make more connections?