Unity announces Catalyst Investment

HACKstage Some more good news emerging from Unity Towers this morning, thanks to Arts Council England.  Here’s some words from us (and you can see the ACE announcement here) …

Unity Theatre awarded £133,900 from Arts Council England in Catalyst Funding

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Unity Theatre is delighted to be able to announce today that it has been awarded a Catalyst Evolve grant of up to £133,900 from Arts Council England towards a £230k creative and organisational development programme. The award will enable the Liverpool theatre to deliver an ambitious and exciting creative programme over and above its existing work (including new commissions, a Digital Artist in Residency programme, support for producers and the wider creative community and a series of Ideas Labs).

Critically, the award will enable the theatre to test and develop a range of new methods of income generation, building on its recent past experience of fundraising for the capital programme. This will include establishing new corporate relationship, a re-launched regular giving programme and increased work with trusts and foundations. It will continue to help bring fundraising into the heart of the organisation.

The award is having an immediate impact on the Unity’s work. Under the Ideas Lab strand, the first two events are announced today. In August the theatre will be working with Annette Mees, one of the WIRED UK Creative Fellows to deliver one of five nationwide Future Assemblys (see below for more)  which will bring together young people and over 65s to uncover visions of possible futures that can inspire us all. Props 6

Then in September we will be working with the hub to deliver a three day lab called HACKstage (again see below for more) where technologists, technicians and creatives are invited to come together to explore how digital technology can open up new forms of interaction in the theatrical / digital space. Over those three days of intensive sharing, making and testing, ideas will be shared, teams will form around them, and these ideas will be developed into (paper) prototypes.

Chair of Unity Theatre, Chris Bliss said:

“This is a really exciting investment in Unity Theatre by Arts Council England, which is being made at a critical time. This will enable us to deliver more programme wise with a wider impact, but it will also help embed fundraising into the heart of the organisation. It will allow us to develop our recent success in individual donor fundraising, it will help us continue to develop our relationship with trusts and foundations and I’m particularly keen to see how it can support the development of new relationships between Unity and the private sector

With every pound raised for the creative programme being matched through the Catalyst Evolve investment new donors will have an even greater impact on our organisation

A  Bit More about those events we mention

Future Assembly

“The Future Assembly” starts a national conversation to uncover visions of possible futures that can inspire us all. The project is taking place in five locations – Liverpool, Newcastle, Cornwall, Ipswich and London.

After the referendum, the country feels divided, the political parties are in turmoil and uncertainty about the future is prevalent. What we all share is a sense of powerlessness, a sense of uncertainty and a knowledge of our fractured communities. More than anything we need a vision of our collective future that we can all believe in. How do we want to be together? And what are our individual roles and responsibilities? Our future belongs to all of us – so we have to work together to shape it.

The Assembly brings together teenagers and over-60s to start creating a vision of the future. In a 2-day intensive Future/Change Lab (Liverpool dates 10th/11th August) we will give them the design tools futurists use and let them co-create a vision of the kind of futures they want 10 years from now.

For more information about Annette Mees, Future Assembly project leader see here

For more information about the public feedback event at Unity, during the Labour Party conference season, see here.

HACKstage

Exploring the space between live and digital in theatre

For three days (14-16 September) technologists, technicians and creatives are being invited to come together to explore how digital technology can open up new forms of interaction in the theatrical / digital space. Over that intensive period hours of sharing, making and testing,  ideas will be shared, teams will form around them, and these ideas will be developed into (paper) prototypes.

HACKstage will conclude with a public sharing of those ideas – for more information on that event see here.  For more info on the hack itself see our mini site here

HACKstage is being co-produced with the hub and DoES Liverpool

As ever keep an eye on the Unity website for more info.

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