A Joint MAC Trust & Cultural Spring Commission
Main Purpose of Commission
The MAC Trust and The Cultural Spring wish to commission an individual, organisation or partnership to conceive and lead an ambitious participatory programme that culminates in an exciting, large scale, public event to celebrate the opening of Sunderland’s new participatory arts space, The Fire Station, in November 2017 and signal this important component of the development of Sunderland's MACQ (Music, Arts and Culture Quarter).
The MAC Trust will work in partnership with The Cultural Spring to manage this project. The Participation programme will be three separate strands delivered by Live Theatre and Dance City (taking up satellite tenancies in The Fire Station) and Sunderland Music Education Hub (SMEH).
The MAC Trust was formed in 2012 to help lead Sunderland’s regeneration using the city’s cultural offer as its main impetus. It is a consortium partner of The Cultural Spring alongside University of Sunderland, The Customs House and Sangini; a member of the Sunderland Cultural Partnership Leadership Group and, most recently, a core partner, alongside Sunderland City Council and University of Sunderland in the development of Sunderland Culture Ltd, a new company that will manage the city’s main venues owned by the three partners and lead the city''s cultural strategy and direction. As a partner in Sunderland Culture, the MAC Trust will play an integral role in the bid to become UK City of Culture 2021.
Its plans to develop the city-centre MACQ have begun successfully with a £2.5 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to renovate the 1907 central fire station into a centre for participatory activities in the performing arts with a focus on young people. It has recently been granted a further £6 million to develop a purpose- built midscale auditorium at the side of The Fire Station to open in late 2019. It is now looking at further development opportunities in the MACQ which also houses the large-scale Empire Theatre and a small-scale music and performing arts venue on the first floor of The Peacock public house (formerly the Londonderry).
The main partner in this project, The Cultural Spring, is the Sunderland and South Tyneside Creative People and Places programme, funded by Arts Council England to raise engagement in the arts amongst local communities.
This project will represent one of The Cultural Spring’s major commissions. Past major commissions of The Cultural Spring have included Wildwork’s A Great Night Out, the Summer Streets Festival and Inventors led by Dominic Wilcox.
Live Theatre is based in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and specialises in new theatre writing, producing its own productions and programming touring work. It will deliver participatory activities around drama and writing for children and young people in its satellite studio in The Fire Station.
Dance City is the dance agency for the north east of England. It has its performance base in Newcastle upon Tyne and delivers activities throughout the region. It will deliver a programme of dance based activities for its participants in The Fire Station.
Sunderland Music Hub works with schools, teachers, practitioners, young people and organisations across the Local Authority, to ensure all young people can access a high quality music education. The partnerships provide a range of music education activities from instrumental tuition, ensembles, access to progression routes, singing opportunities and large scale performances and events.
2. Large scale public event
To take overall artistic leadership and direction of the large scale public event/s that will:
To be responsible for all professional recruitment, contractual, technical, health and safety, local authority liaison and budgetary aspects of this commission
4. Dates of Commission
Five months July – November 2017, with the final public event/s in November 2017
5. Amount of Commission:
The fee for this commission is £55,000.
The fee does not include the following which are paid directly by MAC Trust/Cultural Spring:
Participation programme costs
Documentation of Project
This fee is subject to a successful Arts Council England funding application.
Therefore applicants are asked to provide details of a scaled back version of the event they are proposing with a minimum fee of £25,000. Please refer to this as Plan B.
6.Commission Timetable –
7. Reporting procedures
The successful applicant will liaise with Directors of both The Fire Station and Cultural Spring on a regular basis to review budget and performance.
To apply please supply a written proposal, taking into account both the full programme/event and Plan B scenarios, including:
Through the application process we will assess the following :
10. Contact details
For further information, or to discuss a potential proposal or arrange a site visit, please contact Helen Green, Director, The Fire Station on 0191 447 6090 or firstname.lastname@example.org