EFA 60 Years On: The Bergen Agenda
24 May 2012, 9:30-17:00, Bergen/Norway
Every little thing she does is magic*
Festivals – Celebrate the Arts, Committing to Innovation
Innovation concerns both the arts practice (producing and programming) and a festival’s organisation that needs to adapt rapidly to the changing social environment (its capacity for flexibility and change). While the arts sector becomes more diversified and complex, and while creative industries are the current vogue among policy makers, festivals have a balancing act to achieve. They need to make the most of collaboration while retaining their own character and programme distinctiveness. They need to find new audiences without alienating their regulars, involving the spectators as a resource to create new projects and services. They need to keep their artistic vision fresh while keeping their audiences on side. When it comes down to the key criteria against which to assess large festivals, the combined attributes of linking the local with international contexts, discovery, scholarship, risk, invention, imagination and integration remain under-valued in terms of arguments for increased support. Still, no doubt, we enjoy arts and we believe in their innovation power across disciplines. What for? This session looks into new ideas for collaboration, presentation and artistic development in festivals. Read the background paper.
Video killed the radio star?*
Festivals and the Citizen in Digital Times
Arts festivals are ideal occasions to “activate” citizens’ awareness and participation. Increasing evidenced-based research and policy recommendations underline the positive impact of artistic and cultural festivals in terms of revitalisation of urban life. The additional opportunities offered for and by digital participation can enable festivals to reach a far higher and broader proportion of the population. New technologies offer citizens a way to use festivals as their digital meeting points; to increase the quality and depth of their engagement. Social and digital media can contribute to the reinforcement of festivals’ impact and, through them, to the reinforcement of local civil society. The EU is increasingly looking to define citizenship: 2013 will be promoted as the European Year for Citizens. But what kind of citizenship are we talking about? What does it mean beyond the simple words? This session looks at the role of festivals as agents of participation and cohesion, at the implications and opportunities of new technologies, and asks whether (and if so, which) festivals are making the most of them. It looks at how festivals can use their influence during the European Year of Citizens in 2013 to activate citizens and help shaping policies for citizens in Europe. Read the background paper.
Take a chance on me*
Festivals mean Business, Festivals have Meaning for Business
Festivals are not just contributors to the economy and local businesses, they also figure in their position as major businesses themselves. They face increasing challenges compared to more commercial events in terms of fundraising, cultural diversity, research and development, and even innovation. They work in collaboration with other sectors and with the artists in the creation and presentation of the artistic work. They generate value and contents for the creative and cultural industries and they are major partners in supporting tourism and enhancing a territory’s attractiveness. Festivals are, or can be, natural places for business partners to explore fresh ideas and discover new territories. The session looks at if and how festivals capitalise on their influence and at new ways of unlocking their business potential, providing practices of stimulation and support to local businesses other than marketing and communication. Read the background paper.
*based on The Police, The Buggles, ABBA
Concept by Valeria Marcolin, Simon Mundy, Nadin Deventer and Kathrin Deventer.