The last five months have brought uncertainty, danger and loss for Scotland’s dance community with dance artists facing a year of cancelled work and lost income, while venues are navigating a difficult and precarious future.
The new Performing Arts Venue Relief Fund from the Scottish Government and Creative Scotland, which was allocated at the beginning of August, has provided an essential and welcome support package for arts venues across Scotland, saving many from the brink of closure.
From the dance sector, Dance Base Scotland, Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre & Tramway Glasgow have all received funding to support the recovery of their organisations and to create new, responsive projects, through collaborating with other creative practitioners and providing employment opportunities for freelance artists. The funding, which will run until March 2021, is hugely welcome and will allow each organisation to reconnect with their artists, audiences and communities in a meaningful way.
Each organisation is developing their own bespoke programmes of support for dance artists supported by the PAVRF and will publish details on their individual programmes of activity in the coming weeks and months. The turnaround process for this fund has been rapid, and we are each taking time to ensure that our plans are responsive, robust, inclusive and accessible. We are working together to share information, learning and approaches with each other where appropriate.
To accompany these location and venue specific projects, we are also delighted that all three organisations will collaborate on a nation-wide project to support a number of Scottish-based artists to develop and deliver new work of scale under the banner of #LoveDanceScotland Commissions. This open opportunity will give artists the time and space to create work that will engage with and respond to Scottish audiences in the new performance landscape in which we find ourselves.
In short, the Relief Fund will enable us to create a range of opportunities for artists, audiences, venues and communities to reconnect together after this difficult period of prolonged separation, and truly celebrate the incredible dance community of Scotland, and the diverse array of voices and experiences that make it what it is. We look forward to sharing details with you shortly.
All the teams at
Dance Base, Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre & Tramway Glasgow