Creative Internships Blog Week 1
Lauren Webb, National Theatre Wales
Well, time has flown and I now find myself in strand two of Arts & Business Cymru’s Creative Internship scheme. This is the second year of A&B’s initiative to attract young people to fundraising careers in Wales. Last year I was one of four interns who took part in the pilot of the scheme, each of us training at a different arts organisation in Cardiff, with myself being placed at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama for ten months. I am now privileged to be one of two interns partaking in a second strand of the internship, which provides the opportunity to fundraise for a growing arts charity. I have been placed with National Theatre Wales (NTW) and I am so excited to be working for an organisation so full of vitality over the next nine months.
NTW are an arts charity with a location-based performance programme and an arts presence in communities across Wales. Through the creative mediums of theatre and performance, set amongst ever-varying Welsh backdrops, they offer what I can only call completely immersive and exciting drama experiences. I recently got to join the team in Snowdonia for their mountainside production The Gathering, inspired by the lives of Welsh shepherds, but past productions also include the likes of the acclaimed Mametz, which followed the lives of WW1 soldiers in recreated trenches. Our next production is Bordergame, where the audience play immigrants trying to illegally cross the (fictional) border into Wales, travelling by train from Bristol to Newport. They must try to subtly navigate border control agents played by actors, corrupted moles offering fake identities and a massive online audience who can join in, watching “CCTV” to identify unusual happenings – all in all a very unique and thrilling theatrical gaming experience!
One of the best aspects of the second strand internships is that we are now not only ready to be trusted with greater fundraising responsibility, but also that the smaller arts organisations that we are working for require it. Smaller teams will always mean any extra fundraising capacity will be most welcome, and I cannot express how welcome I have been made to feel at NTW. Across my time here I will have many professional development opportunities, whilst getting to be part of a number of exciting new fundraising steps. A few examples of my upcoming work include planning and creating an individual giving scheme, securing a corporate sponsor and contributing to a new NTW development strategy. Following yesterday’s A&B training seminar, I think a crowdfunding campaign may also be on the horizon in 2015.
There is little I enjoy more than variety and NTW promises that by the bucketful. Each creatively clever project they produce is so different in style, content and location that working here should be right up my street and I cannot wait to see what my time here brings!
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