This article was originally published by IETM – INTERNATIONAL NETWORK FOR CONTEMPORARY PERFORMING ARTS
Things started going really bad in Spain between 2008 and 2011, with the beginning of cuts dictated by the European Commission, the Central European Bank and the International Monetary Fund – the dreaded Troika. Before that, the cultural sector and the performing arts had gone through almost 30 years of cultural policy developments aiming to create structures and to support creation and production of artistic works. With varying success, such policies organised and strengthened an unprecedented artistic fabric. Austerity policies provoked a setback that will take several years to be overcome, if at all.
I wouldn’t say that the performing arts sector in Spain was strong and highly creative, but in 30 years it developed substantially. Regular framework funds for artists and companies were implemented and new venues and creation centres were opened. All of this at a local, regional and national level. A broad array of public institutions covered different aspects of the development of the performing arts. However, the modernization process was not finished yet, there were still reforms to do: the high political dependence, lack of democracy in cultural institutions and some new expensive buildings without artistic projects, only built to feed the real state bubble and increase the public debt. Besides, the presence and support to contemporary innovative performing arts was not guaranteed in local public venues, in fact the vast majority of the performing spaces. Seguir leyendo The Situation of the Performing Arts Sector in Spain after the Crisis→
I wrote this report four years ago as a result of the training trip I curated for the “Spanish Network of Public Theatres” to London and Oxford. In this trip, around 30 Spanish directors of public theatres traveled to London to meet English colleagues, exchanges information with them, being familiar with their projects and visits the spaces.
The report is written both in Spanish and in English and cover main aspects of cultural policies in England, description of the English model of management of theatres and a complete review of the theatres visited.
The performing arts spaces are divided into three geographical areas that cover three different theatre models. These spheres can be visualised as three concentric circles whose central point is in the centre of London. Seguir leyendo Theatres in London and UK→
Just published the third volume devoted to the Netherlands in the collection “La Red Travel Notebooks”. This collection began with London and Berlin, is the result of the training trips I’ve been designing annually for the Spanish Network of Public Theatres. Its aim is to present models and best practices in managing theatres and concert halls in Europe. In addition, in each of the volumes is an immersion in systems of cultural policies that give its support to public and subsidized theatres.
The three volumes have been reissued in a new design and published bilingual, Spanish and English. With this step the activities of the Network of Spanish Theatres goes beyond, starting as an international research centre specializing in management of performing arts venues. The new publications can be downloaded at the following links:
The new volume includes a first part of cultural policy and the Dutch system of performing arts exhibition. The second section describes the most innovative venues of Holland from the point of view of management, the artistic project and its architecture. Among others presents the Rotterdamse Schouwburg, Rotterdam Zuidplein Theater, Theaters Tilburg, Stadsschouwburg Amsterdam and Het Muziektheater aan’tlj Muziekgebouw, these last two important concert halls in Amsterdam. All theaters show the main figures for its operation: budgets, audiences, number of representations, etc.
The three volumes are an indispensable collection if you want to learn the differences between the various management models of subsidized European theatres. Also provide a perfect tool for catching up on trends and innovations that pioneered performance spaces of Europe are currently developing.
In my third year of collaboration with the Feria de Huesca (Hueca international showcase for performing arts) I can’t but express satisfaction with the results obtained. The difficulty of pulling ahead in Spain a performing arts project which encourage innovation and contemporanity above populism, tradition and simple entertainment (I feel a deep sorrow for the case of Gijon’ La Laboral) can be optimistic about the strength of the Feria de Huesca and its position in the future.
The strong commitment of the patrons for the contemporary performing arts and the debate in the context of professional meeting point has given the expected results and I am convinced this year will be definitively consolidated. Anyway, we must be careful since no one escapes the strong dependence of the culture sector on politics in Spain and the approaching election times, and therefore possible changes in the political ecosystem.
I encourage you to continue the link of the Fair to look at the Artistic Programme and the Professional Conference. Concerning artistic programme I put some significant videos, although there is much more. The Conference is titled “Time for Revolution” (look at the introductory text) and no doubt will be a good place to reflect what changes are needed in the cultural sector to advance much further, with or without crisis.
Presentation of “mov-s/madrid 2010 to be held at the “Centro de Arte Reina Sofia” in Madrid and performing arts venues of the city from 10 to 13 June. Information www.move-s.org
Under the generic title of “The Active Spectator”, the third edition of mov-s aims to delve into the reality of today’s audience. The relationship between performer and spectator can be enriched through the transformation from a passive spectator to an active spectator, who is the protagonist in their relationship with the artist. Considering the spectator as being intimately involved with the artist’s work is a path relatively little explored by the arts, in particular the dance and movement arts, and is a way for a large number of people to be involved in artistic creation. Seguir leyendo “mov-s/madrid 2010” – The Active Spectator→