Theatre in Wales

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Cross-border touring made 'easier'     

Arts organisations should find UK touring easier after Britain's four Arts Councils announced a new approach to funding tours.
Previously, subsidised bodies could use their funding only within the national borders of each Arts Council - English, Welsh, Scottish or Northern Irish. Now companies will be freer to work in the whole of the UK.

The new strategy takes effect immediately and is intended to give audiences across the UK more access to high quality performing arts - and give artists a greater choice of venues when touring the UK.

Trevor Nunn, artistic director of the National Theatre said: "Our brief has always been to perform in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

"We are delighted that now there is a proper funding mechanism which allows audiences throughout the UK to have direct access to our work. As an immediate result, in this financial year we will be bringing Bill Bryden's production of The Good Hope to Glasgow and Edinburgh in February."

The Arts Councils of England and Scotland have jointly allocated £720,000 towards a fund for large scale touring between England and Scotland in the year 2001-02.

The fund will support drama, opera and dance - and possibly other art forms currently under discussion.

The four UK Arts Councils have also agreed that arts organisations can use up to 15% of their touring budget for work in other member countries of the UK, when touring to small or middle-sized venues.

Peter Hewitt, chief executive of the Arts Council of England, said of the move: "It will increase the choice of touring work available and allow arts organisations to build a more diverse audience through a wider range of venues and spaces."
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Monday, September 24, 2001back



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