Support for Major Performing Arts Organisations

Co-hosted by Australia Council,
26 February 2008, Australia

On 26 to 29 February 2008, thirty delegates from 16 countries attended a mini summit on Support for Major Performing Arts Organisations, hosted by IFACCA and the Australia Council.

The mini summit followed a research report published by IFACCA in 2007, highlighting the key issues and challenges for funders of major performing arts organisations. A copy of the report is available here. Other resources related to the topic can be found here.

Guest speakers at the mini summit included Carrillo Gantner, President of the Victorian Arts Centre Trust, Robyn Archer singer and public advocate of the arts, Peter Steidl, Director of Strategy Lab, JWT and Louise Walsh, Director, Artsupport Australia.

A report on the mini summit was distributed to IFACCA members in April. The report summarised the main issues discussed at the summit, including:
- Variety of models of government funding for major performing arts organisations and the range in size (economies) of countries
- Managing the relationship with major performing arts companies through challenging times
- The ‘balancing act’ required by government agencies to preserve the traditional ‘canon’ and provide opportunities for innovation and the creation of new work
- The government’s level of influence in determining repertoire; and how the government views the responsibilities of a major performing arts organisation
- Managing the consequences of granting large proportions of government funds to a small number of companies
- The financial dynamics and challenges of the repertoire model used by performing arts organisations and the tensions in balancing income and expenditure
- Models for interaction between major performing arts organisations and small to medium organisations for mutual benefits
- The need for major performing arts organisations and government funders to be able to undertake strategic planning to manage change
- New trends and the potential impact of digital technologies on arts organisations and on audiences
- Growth in individual philanthropy and ways in which arts funding agencies can help channel funds towards the arts
- How companies, venues, individual artists and funding agencies respond to cultural diversity
- The changing nature of cultural relations, the way in which arts organisations access international markets, and the way in which governments involve major performing arts organisations in cultural diplomacy
- Methods used by funding agencies to assess artistic quality
- Touring and the relationship with, and costs of, accessing venues
- The relationship between performing arts organisations and venues
- Leadership and governance, and the skill requirements of managers and boards of arts organisations
- Mentorship as an effective tool for developing cultural leaders within this sector