arts funding cuts
Of course we could use more money - we had far more applicants to our National portfolio than we could afford to support. Yes, there is more to do in terms of the balance of the Arts Council's investment and yes, progress is slow - but it is purposeful and targeted. Overall investment outside London has actually increased in this National portfolio round.
Arts funding is essential in keeping art accessible and affordable for everyone. It is essential in providing young people safe spaces in their communities. It is essential in providing economic and cultural assets to towns. It is essential in ensuring our cultural climate is diverse, fresh and exciting. Art should not be dull or inaccessible and enjoying art should not be expensive - and without sufficient funding, it will inevitably become these things.
The subsidised arts are the entry point for many of our leading lights in the creative industries, and of course the creative industries themselves, including the arts, are one of the fastest growing sectors in the UK economy, accounting now for one in 12 jobs.
Theatreland is (appropriately) always a dramatic place, but even by industry standards 2012 was a particularly eventful year. The Queen's Jubilee and the triumphant Olympics and Paralympics meant all eyes were on the UK, and of course London.
Today, more than ever, businesses need to develop a common purpose when it comes to arts funding, because if business is the bedrock of civilisation, then the arts are the fruits of civilisation, and they must be nurtured.
2011/12 was one of the most challenging but hugely satisfying years I can remember during my years at Northern Ballet.
Watching Rambert is never going to be an arduous task- they are a company of some of the finest contemporary dancers in the country, and their astounding ability is reason enough to see any show.
You hear it said that times of cuts are good for culture: 'talent will out'. But we do not live in an equal world. If we lose the best efforts of the last decade to counter inequality, we will lose access to the creative vision of half the population. And what a loss of creativity that would be.