Thinking

The combined theatre industry experience of The Empty Space's Board, Director, and Associate Producers runs into many decades, and we all work directly with artists every day so it would be easy to fall into a trap of thinking that we know what an environment in which artists can flourish looks like, and that we are aware of the barriers to artists achieving their potential and making a sustainable livelihood. And we do know something of those things but we believe that in order to effect real change across the industry we need to know more, to be constantly questioning. That's why we engage in research.

Sometimes we commission or collaborate on research designed to look deeper into an area we have already identified as critical. An example of this would be The Art of Living Dangerously, a collaboration with Exchange, Missions Models Money, and New Economics Foundation that begins to explore the sustainability of artists' livelihoods.

At other times we host research projects which allow us to get a close up look at an area that we might never have thought to explore. Royal Central School of Speech and Drama's Cultural Value Project exploring the value of theatre and dance for Tyneside's audiences was one such project.

Reports from the research in which we engage will be posted here as they are published.

 

The Art of Living Dangerously 

Exchange (a group of performing arts practitioners and organisations based in Tyneside, including Ballet Lorent, The Empty Space, Northern Stage and Nikolas Barrera) commissioned this provocation from Missions Models Money and new economics foundation. It is concerned with three inter-linked issues: the role of arts and culture within sustainable economic development; how artists and other creative practitioners can contribute to sustainable development and finally how to ensure artists and creative practitioners are able to achieve sustainable livelihoods throughout their life-cycles, especially as emerging independent artists.

Tyneside Audiences

This research interrogates the values that theatre and dance hold for their audiences, and how these values differ between amateur, commercial and subsidised performance.