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DART Day 08.02.23

Monday, 20 February


Community Touring Scheme

We had a great time at our latest Developing Artists in Rural Touring (DART) day at Matlock Town Council offices.  

DART is our artist development programme aimed at professional artists and organisations in the Midlands who are interested in getting involved and finding out more about rural touring.

We had eleven companies/artists attend and these were accompanied by our guest artist, Spesh Maloney from the band Scratchy Beard and two promoters, Roger Bode and Jane Littlefield. 

The artists were:

  • Mike Venables
  • Craig Gould
  • Matilda Rowland
  • Dan Webber
  • Andrew McWilliam (Chorus Theatre)
  • Tilly Clark (Deil Clark Duo)
  • Matt Hill (Low Drift)
  • Sara Littlefield
  • Pym Stockman
  • Mark Gwynne-Jones
  • Camilla McCawley
Spesh Maloney, Scratchy Beard And Group 4

We began the day with an introduction led by Artist Engagement Officer Steve Wilson looking at what the broader rural touring scheme's offer is, followed by a discussion on the work of Live & Local and how we work with communities and artists. Having a number of our staff attend helped answer many questions regarding our processes and programme. Emily from the Audience Engagement Team was on hand to answer queries on marketing and promotional work.

After this session we went into groups to look at the many elements needed to enable a successful rural touring show. There were some great points made. This was then followed by individual presentations from the artists about their work. Some of these included mini performances and video presentations.

Dan Webber 5

After lunch, we had more artists' presentations and completed the day with Q&A sessions from our guest promoters and guest artist.

Steve was delighted with the day:

‘Our DART days are becoming more and more successful and diverse in terms of the interaction and the quality & range of artistic work we attract. It's not so much about artists getting into our scheme, for us it's more important that they find out more about the scheme and rural touring itself and are then able to make a more informed decision as to whether it's right for them.’

Group 6

Feedback from the artists:

'It was good to get an overview of the scheme, to meet other creatives and to hear from current promoters and artists. This was all valuable knowledge to have before beginning the process of submitting proposals.' - Andrew McWilliam, Chorus Theatre

'All the staff were really friendly and informative. Everything ran very smoothly' - Camille McCawley

'You created a very nice and welcoming vibe' - Matt Hill, Low Drift 


We'd like to thank all of the artists who attended our first DART day of 2023 and Steve for this blog.

To find out more about DART visit our Get Involved page or check out our highlights video from the day here.

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