Theatre in Wales

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Theatre 2001 - metrocentric or what?     

Wales leading performing arts organisations are preparing a large-scale conference this autumn to counter what they are claiming was the English bias of Theatre 2001.
The rally is being organised by Welsh arts professionals who say the joint Theatrical Management Association/Independent Theatre Council event held in London earlier this year failed to address issues outside even the south east of England.

Revealing preliminary details of the event, Wales Association for the Performing Arts chairman Chris Ryde told The Stage: Theatre 2001 didnt have the slightest focus outside of the M25, some people are saying, but lets say England to be generous. The idea is to host an event specifically to address the huge issues that face the Welsh culturalindustries right now.

Provisionally booked for October 8 at the Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff, the conference will be co-hosted by WAPA and fellow Welsh umbrella organisation Presenting the Arts.

Equity, the ITC, the TMA and the Arts Council of Wales are among the organisations which have already pledged to help fund the event.

Ryde added: We are going to try to get Welsh culture secretary Jenny Randerson to appear as a keynote speaker and hopefully the new ACW chief executive Peter Tyndall.

We may also invite a prominent figure in the Scottish arts to give an address. In principle we think that the situation between Scotland and England is relatively similar to that between Wales and England, in that there are no dedicated funds set aside for either by central government or by the respective assemblies.

Chris Ryde - also Equity Wales organiser - added: The crucial aim of it is to look forward. We dont want to spend time back-biting about the last three or four years. Unless we get together there will not be a Welsh cultural industry at all in five years time.
The Stage  
web site
Alexa Baracaia
Thursday, August 16, 2001back



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