7 May 2013

Creative Money: What Are We Going To Do About Finding The Right Money For Creativity?

Bush Theatre, 7 Uxbridge Road, London W12 8LJ.

7:15 - 22:00

An invitation from Ben Cooper-Melchiors and Improbable

Are you a theatre artist frustrated by the skills it takes to fund and create work?

Are you an arts organisation director frustrated by the amount of time spent chasing funds without the time to deliver excellent creativity?

Are you a manager in a non-profit or registered charity frustrated by the volatility in income and how it affects programming or staffing?

Have you known anyone made redundant in order to cut costs, due to lack of money?

Who is thinking about income sources? And how do we support these thinkers?

Why can’t any theatre creative get involved in these questions?

When is taking corporate money “selling out?”

When is state funding an unhelpful dependency?

Have you ever wondered: will there ever be enough funding?

What models, partnerships and different approaches might work in the future?

Ben writes

I am an arts manager, consultant and producer. After working with champions of creativity in the UK like Battersea Arts Centre, the National Youth Theatre, IdeasTap and while building The Jellyfish Theatre, I’ve seen excellent creatives across the industry produce bold ideas yet hit brick walls of money: stretched budgets, funding cuts, staff redundancies and the business model not being “sustainable.” Yet I’ve also worked in US models where there’s little public subsidy, earned income is king and there’s arguably less creative risk. Thus I’m interested now more than ever in ways “creative thinkers” can generate income to support creative work. And what conversations, skills and support are needed to implement those ideas within what works now—while keeping creativity at the helm?

If spending less than you earn is the basic premise of business—which means another creative idea can be funded—then what are the proven failures, shyness, benefits and ‘eureka moments’ found in mixing creative and entrepreneurial business perspectives?

Creativity does not only have to be the end result: as an expense. There is a multiplicity of minds, roles and skills in theatre. And ideas for income do not only have to come from board members and executive teams. This satellite is the chance for all levels of arts managers, artists and makers to talk about their experiences of generating income, share what does (or doesn’t) work and maybe even trigger new ideas that grow new platforms, performances and a modern industry. I’m curious: who could you bring to the conversation who’s not an executive or even in theatre that just might inform and unlock a new way of generating money for creativity?

Booking for this event has now closed.