Is this where the party is? It has been said that directing a successful production is not unlike being the host of a successful party. It begins with inviting the right people (casting). Once the party has begun, your job is to fuel the guests; provide good food, keep their drinks fresh, and let them do what they do best: be themselves. Don’t micromanage or steer conversations or force your agenda. Stay attentive to needs and be open to pleasant surprises. If someone gets drunk and obnoxious, put them in a cab. If there’s a spill, clean it up. What we’re talking about here, without using the actual term, is creating a strong ensemble.