Live & Local – Rural & Community Touring

Information for artists and companies who are considering putting themselves forward for work on the Live & Local community performance schemes. We also recommend that you read the NRTF publication 'Eyes Wide Open' before contacting us or submitting an online Information Form.

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Live & Local

is a network of voluntary led community orgnisations in Warwickshire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Worcestershire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Rutland who provide their communities with the opportunity to enjoy exciting and different professional shows on their doorstep.

This network is a partnership between the knowledge and enthusiasm of local people combined with the expertise of the professional co-ordinating team at Live & Local.

The local organisations choose and promote the performances with our support. Live & Local are not the promoters. We act as an intermediary between professional artists and local promoters by raising funding, identifying suitable shows, co-ordinating bookings and contracts and providing marketing support.

Based in Warwick, we are a team of twelve with Business & Operations and Engagement Teams.

Live & Local is a National Portfolio Organisation funded by the Arts Council, England and by 40+ local authorities. We are also part of the National Rural Touring Forum, a network of 30 similar schemes across the country.

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The local promoters

are voluntary run organisations serving a distinct local, small rural (and some urban) catchment area such as village hall committees, parish councils, community centre committees and church groups. They organise between one and six Live & Local events per year, and have few resources apart from time, local knowledge and enthusiasm. We also work with a very few professionally managed venues (although not usually arts managers) serving a wider catchment areas and having a larger programme of arts events.

Become a Promoter - Bring Performances to Your Community
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The Venues

The venues are predominantly unequipped non-theatre venues with 100 seats or less. Their stages are rarely suitable for drama therefore we are often dealing with flat floor spaces and need to know how you would overcome the inherent sightline problems. There will be no technical support at these venues.

The few professionally run venues have more in-house resources in terms of staff (but rarely technical staff), equipment and administrative support, usually with 100 seats plus. Some are partially equipped with β€œend-on” stages, although a variety of other possible flat floor formats are possible if additional equipment is brought in. NB: These venues represent less than 2% of our promoters.

Key Point: Be flexible in terms of your required performing area to maximise your market potential. If you ask for 20’ x 20’ then only 30% of our venues can consider you – and some of these will have to lose capacity and some of them don’t book drama. If you ask for 16’ x 16’ the number of potential bookings goes up considerably. There are often also restrictions on the height in these types of venues as well.

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Main Space

The Performers – Theatre Companies

Usually well established and generally, but not exclusively, with experience of touring into community and/or non-theatre venues i.e., with requisite administration, marketing and technical experience - and offering appropriate artistic product. Shows should be self-contained, including lighting, sound (and staging if required) to deliver a quality show in an unequipped venue. Where necessary also tour with an experienced technician or stage manager. See below about our Developing Artist scheme (DART).

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The Performers – Musicians, Bands and Other Artforms

We expect musical groups and other artists to be experienced in touring to community and/or non-theatre venues. We do not expect them to provide lighting, although this is a definite plus towards their inclusion in the Menu, but we do expect them to always tour their own sound system. See below about DART our artist development scheme.

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Developing Artists in Rural Touring (DART)

DART is an ongoing programme of support for performing artists based in the East and/or West Midlands. Since launching, DART supports artists/companies with mentoring, bursaries, and connections to rural audiences/promoters. The initiative also supports the creation of new work for rural/community touring audiences and brought promoters and audiences closer to the creation of this work. DART will also support companies new to rural touring in the practical aspects of mounting their first rural tour.

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