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2021 was another tumultuous year for most, but we were fortunate enough to continue to have each other and our lovely networks, which we’re pretty pleased with. We got supercolds, spent more time on zoom than our new year's resolutions would have been happy with, Laura had a 3 month burnout period and Ash moved to Brighton. We feel alright as of December 15th, thanks for asking.
Despite the stop-start nature of life mid-Covid, we fundraised £513,198 for independent artists, an average grant of £14,255.50.
We also produced some fantastic work this year:
Stomach Full - Rachael Young
The Rising Sun R+D - David Shearing
Out of the Frame R+D - Connor Bowmott + Regan Mott
24 Italian Songs & Arias + Voices - Brian Lobel
BINGE - Brian Lobel
Medusa Reclusa R+D - Lauren John Joseph
He’s Dead - Marikiscrycrycry
Prada in the Rain R+D - Marikiscrycrycry
REGNANT - Xavier de Sousa
We gave direct support to 32 creatives through advisories, mentoring and consultancy. This has enabled us to meet some brilliant folks all over the country, to help with their strategic planning, business planning, fundraising and sustainable development.
As part of our ACE-funded Producing for the End of the World we delivered free Arts Council Project Grants and DYCP workshops to over 70 individuals. We’ll be doing more on this project in 2022.
We launched OPEN DOORS: The Real Cost of Artist-Led Spaces with East Street Arts, the beginning of a campaign we’ll be doing a lot more work on in 2022.
We taught brilliant future artists at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, Rose Bruford College, London Studio Centre and Middlesex University. This ranged from delivering an entire Festival module to delivering one-off lecturing on fundraising, producing and collaborative practice.
We delivered further facilitation with professionals, early-career practitioners and young people with East Sussex Arts Partnership, Theatre Royal Stratford East, Theatre Bristol, Producer Gathering and The Committee at The Yard. Through these we explored money, value and sustainability.
We were fortunate enough to work with Eve Veglio-Hüner during her LSC placement and as Assistant Producer following that.
23% of the work we did in 2021 was unpaid. As freelancers, having a quarter of our time as unpaid is unsustainable and we will continue to challenge the culture of this and explore ways for this time to be compensated for ourselves and others.
2021 has basically been 2020 v2 for everyone and we hope that you got through it as unscathed as possible. We’re tired, you’re tired. Let’s have a bloody break and then see what 2022 has to offer.
Ash + Laura x