Cultural Playing Field

Community Arts Qualifications Advisory Group meeting by Robin Simpson
December 4, 2015, 3:11 pm
Filed under: meetings | Tags: , , , , ,

On Thursday I was at the offices of UK Music in London for the first meeting of the new Community Arts Qualifications Advisory Group. This group has been set up by Creative & Cultural Skills for two reasons. Firstly, the Government’s current apprenticeship reform programme requires a fresh look at all existing apprenticeship frameworks, converting them to new ‘Apprenticeship Standards’ by September 2017. CCSkills believes the current Community Arts framework is popular and important to maintain and has established the Advisory Group to shape a new apprenticeship for the future. The Advisory Group will also formally advise on the curriculum development for the new National College for the Creative and Cultural Industries. This is an initiative CCSkills is setting up to deliver high quality, industry-led intensive vocational training at Purfleet in Essex, and through partners nationwide. CCSkills plans to include a community arts strand to the curriculum (working title ‘Audiences and Participation’). The Advisory Group will shape this strand, working with the University of the Arts London Awarding Body. At our first meeting we discussed the need for more apprentices in the arts and the challenges and opportunities for larger arts organisations as a result of the Government’s new apprenticeships levy which comes into force from April 2017.

Robin Simpson.

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Hi Robin
Thank you for your continued arts updates which are always so useful.

I read this post with interest as I am Producer at Protein Dance which is a company which has audiences and participation at the heart of its work. For the last 15 years Artistic Director Luca Silvestrini has been making inclusive and participant led work. The use of a local cast in a professional setting has been adopted by many in the industry since he pioneered the concept in his production of Dear Body in 2007/08. Our outdoor show (In)visible Dancing, performed on high streets, also uses a local cast and community groups, and engaged over 28,000 passers-by in Bath, Cardiff and Canterbury in 2014. With our 2013/14 show Border Tales, in addition to using a local cast and performing it ‘in-the-round’, we experimented with the traditional touring model for dance by performing for longer runs in each venue (see Arts Professional article

We also work with refugees (, hospitals and pupil referral units (

Creating a more coherent Artist Development programme is also something we are looking at doing imminently. We have run a few one off training courses very successfully but are thinking about how we can be involved in something more structured and meaningful.

If there is any way we can get involved in the work you have outlined above we would be keen. It would be lovely to get in touch.

Kindest regards

Comment by Melanie Precious

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