Great talent doesn’t just fall from a tree, it needs careful nurturing

Kenneth Tharp advocates for careful planning in nurturing future talents in the Arts and culture. The Place chief executive calls for making our voice heard. We can all write why we care and what the arts mean to our MP and our local councillor. This will make our voice heard when government departments – including the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) –set out how they would achieve 25% cuts and 40% cuts by 2019-20.

In the arts so much of the grassroots innovation from artists is supported through the investment of public funds. Many of the most celebrated leaders across art forms were nurtured in the subsidised sector over many years.

Kenneth’s overview about the Place work in nurturing new talents is enlightening.

“This summer we’ve had 30 choreographers and their collaborators researching new ideas in our 11 studios, away from the limelight, hidden from public view as part of initiative called Choreodrome. They were creating the seeds of new dance ideas that may blossom into staged works in a year or two. At the same time, The Place presented three of our associate artists at the Edinburgh Fringe festival. Two of them were nominated for Total Theatre Awards, and earned four and five star reviews. All three companies now have further international touring opportunities and one has been awarded a 5-year residency in Belgium.

It’s important to note that not so long ago these same artists were quietly developing their ideas in our studios at The Place. And these examples are just a fraction of what we do as an organisation to nurture and support creative talent.

This kind of grassroots development needs continued support. Without the support of public funding that allows artists to develop their ideas, with sufficient resources, most often through organisations like ours, then in 5-10 years time we’ll wonder what happened to our nation’s creative talent. The importance of this grassroots support is not exclusive to dance. It is of equal importance across all art forms, and across the whole of the creative industries. Ultimately this is about helping all of us, whether in work or leisure, to fulfil our creative and human potential. The arts have an important role to play in that.

‘Our success in the arts as a nation, is the major contributing factor to our consistent position as the number one in soft power in the world.’ (ComRes/Facebook, July 2015). That said, the biggest reason for supporting the arts has to do with what kind of world we wish to live in. I believe the arts are key to our society and to the kind of world I want to live in.”

What you can do

Write to your MP and your local Councillor.Tell them why you care and what the arts mean to you. Write to The Place.

  • Tell them how culture has shaped your life and the lives of those around you.
  • Tell them what they are doing right, and what they should be doing.
  • Together we can make our voices heard.

To read Kenneth Tharp full article click here.