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Arts Council England announces £500,000 investment in the East Midlands to support new touring projects


Arts Council England has announced that three arts organisations based in the East Midlands have been awarded funding in the latest round of their £45 million strategic touring programme.

A total of £511,490 will be invested in Sinfonia Viva Chamber Orchestra in Derby and Dance4 and New Art Exchange in Nottingham. The funds will support each organisation to showcase their work to audiences across England.

Peter Knott, Arts Council Area Director for the Midlands, said: ‘The Strategic touring programme supports arts organisations to exhibit and perform their work for new audiences. The projects which New Art Exchange, Sinfonia Viva Chamber Orchestra and Dance4 plan to tour all have a strong focus on audience engagement and participation. They will be great opportunities for people who cannot easily access or experience art, or who live outside the region, to enjoy and participate in the bold and entertaining work being produced in the East Midlands.’

In the latest round of the programme, Arts Council England has announced a total investment of £1,786,435 in 13 organisations. In the East Midlands the three projects which have received funding are:

Dance4 – Herculean Cabaret

International dance organisation Dance4 will receive a total of £249,642 to take Herculean Cabaret to 15 venues across three Arts Council areas, including places of low engagement with the arts. Created by New Art Club, Herculean Cabaret is a spectacular new dance production for families, which follows the 12 Labours of Hercules. The tour will focus on community engagement and involvement. It will support venues to build connections with new audiences, particularly those from hard to reach communities and first time attenders.

New Art Exchange – Great Art in Diverse Communities

New Art Exchange has been awarded a total of £172,730 to tour their project, Great Art in Diverse Communities. The project will commission new works by three artists, Yara El-Sherbini, Faiza Butt and Mahtab Hussain, which will then be displayed at galleries and art spaces across the North and Midlands areas. New Art Exchange will support these galleries to create meaningful participatory opportunities for the hardest to reach audiences to engage with this art.

Sinfonia Viva Chamber Orchestra – Dark Clouds are Smouldering into Red

Sinfonia Viva will receive a total of £89,118 to deliver a participatory programme in the Midlands and North areas which will coincide with the 100 year anniversary of the start of World War One. The Orchestra will work with composer James Redwood and choreographer Tom Dale to produce an emotive touring commission which puts young participants at the heart of the creative process. Participants will take inspiration from archives, community history and poetry to create four musical movements of their own. In each new venue, the performance of Dark Clouds are Smouldering into Red will be a unique interpretation of the original composition.

A full list of the 13 successful organisations from this round of the Strategic touring programme can be found on the Arts Council England website. The successful applicants from the previous 10 rounds were awarded a total of over £20 million.

Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives. We support a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature and crafts to collections. Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. In short, it makes life better. Between 2010 and 2015, we will invest £1.9 billion of public money from government and an estimated £1.1 billion from the National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country.


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