29 April 2014back

Creative Internships Blog Week 26

Ciara McCafferty, Prime Cut Productions

Collaborate: to work, one with another; cooperate.

There really is no finer word when it comes to describing the working environment within the artistic sector. Which is why Collaboration was an inspired choice as the theme of this year’s annual Audiences NI conference held at the striking Titanic Belfast. Audiences NI concentrate on audience development across Northern Ireland through assisting organisations in the sector to understand, increase and diversify their reach to audiences. Being able to represent Prime Cut Productions at such a key event really was something quite special.

Select ideas discussed during the day included: exploring why collaboration is essential to our survival within the Arts in Northern Ireland, analysing best practise case studies, sharing success stories and identifying the benefits of collaboration. I was keen to use this opportunity to network with arts practitioners from right across Northern Ireland. One of the most stimulating talks for me personally was hearing from the Nerve Centre team regarding their key role during Derry/Londonderry City of Culture 2013. They examined; the impact of their programme throughout the year and what they hoped their lasting legacy would be from City of Culture. This included a word of caution when it came to running competitions on Facebook due to the phenomena of buying ‘likes’!

April has brought the start of rehearsals for Prime Cut’s next production ‘The Chilean Trilogy’. This is an ambitious co-production with The MAC, where Prime Cut are the resident theatre company. The Trilogy consists of: a double bill of ‘Villa’ and ‘Discurso’ by Guillermo Calderon and ‘Tejas Verdes’ by Ferman Cabal. These three powerful plays, performed by an all female cast, revolve around the central theme of the Pinochet regime in Chile following the coup in 1973. During this period approximately 5,000 detainees were brought to the Villa Grimaldi where many were tortured and hundreds ‘disappeared’.  This will include a triple bill of all three shows on one day, an event that promises to be stunning.

This show has brought about inventive collaborations, such as working with the restaurant at the MAC on tying in offers on Chilean wine and special food deals on the day of the triple bill. Three shows are bound to work up an appetite for the audience as well as the cast!

The interns were asked recently to fill out an evaluation of the Creative Interns programme so far; this gave the opportunity to reflect on the past six months. I was blown away by the amount that we have covered in such a short space of time. The sheer volume of training workshops, master classes and net working events has lead to an extremely fulfilling programme. If I had been told six months ago that I would soon be filling out applications for tens of thousands of pounds I would never have believed you. Or not only attending seminars on sponsorship but progressing onto the advanced sponsorship seminars! This programme has opened my eyes to the world of cultural fundraising, how it is a constant process but by getting inventive with your methods it is never dull. 

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