The Achates Philanthropy Prize has announced the Regional Showcase for this year’s redesigned Prize, as well as its first conference.
Due to the pandemic, the 2020 Achates Philanthropy Prize sees no prizes awarded, with the campaign focusing instead on a UK-wide showcase of case studies, showing how cultural organisations have worked with their communities and how their communities have responded during this year.
The Regional Showcase has been selected from a long list of 121 nominations, researched and developed by Achates Philanthropy Prize Ambassadors, each one resident in their region: Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and each of the five ACE regions in England (London, South East, South West, North and Midlands).
The 24 nominations selected are: 20 Stories High, Accidental Theatre, Belgrade Theatre, Bloomin’ Arts, Craftspace, DanceEast, Dawns i Bawb, Dundee Rep & Scottish Dance Theatre, Kiln Theatre, Kneehigh Theatre, Northern Ballet, Presteigne Festival, Replay Theatre Company, Rifco, Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Scottish Ballet, Spread the Word, Stage Beyond, The Anstice, The Burton at Bideford, The Reader, Theatr Clwyd, Theatre Centre & Theatre503 and Toonspeak.
The activity profiled includes: digital offers, from a storytelling app to a wellbeing resource for NHS workers to entire festivals delivered online; a stage play reimagined for radio and a children’s show performed in the back of a converted transit van; a team delivering hundreds of food parcels within their local community, another distributing creativity-stimulating ‘rainbow boxes’, and another one sharing sunflower and geranium seeds.
A 19-strong panel of judges will now review the Regional Showcase and curate a National Showcase featuring eight cultural organisations – one from each region – to be announced at an online ceremony presented in partnership with HOME on Thursday 12 November.
Free online conference
This ceremony will be preceded by the first ever conference hosted and curated by the Achates Prize. Art, Audiences, Money will explore what kind of world we want to live in and the role that culture can play in that world, with provocations on potential routes forward for the cultural sector at this critical time.
Running from 10am to 5:15pm, the free online conference will comprise of four hour-long sessions with highlights including: Philanthropy as a Life Skills: chaired by theatre critic, children’s novelist and journalist Lyn Gardner, Pay to Play: a discussion around value on engagement with the arts, and Rewriting the Rulebook: a discussion about disrupting old models.
Achates Philanthropy Foundation Chair, Caroline McCormick, said:
“The 2020 Achates Philanthropy Prize shines a light into the role of the cultural sector at the darkest time for a generation. All of the nominations demonstrate how cultural organisations across the country have responded to the challenges of Covid-19, despite themselves being under threat.
“Our one-day conference – Art, Audiences, Money – will create a moment for us all to take breath and to consider the road forward from here, where our destination should be and what role culture can play in that journey. We can’t raise the voices of all the remarkable talent across the country and the work that is being done but are very proud that we can give a brief glimpse into what culture can do.”
Main image: James Allen