When Kerry and Cork clash, sparks usually fly, but what happens when they collaborate?
Creative Mentoring for Festivals is underway in Kerry and Cork, funded by the Arts Council's Invitation to Collaboration Award. The arts festivals which are benefitting include Listowel Writers’ Week, KFest in Killorglin, Cork Puppetry Festival, Midleton May Festival, Mallow Arts Festival and Cork Folk Festival.
The project is designed to provide practical guidance and strategic support to each festival through a shared process of creative mentoring which was led by Dermot McLaughlin, Philip King and Una Carmody.
The goal of the programme is to assist each festival to develop its creative approach to programming so that an even greater artistic ambition and audience engagement can be achieved. 'Finding ways to ensure that the mentoring process will assist start up festivals and re-energise older festivals is key', Dermot explained. Central to this is how each festival will develop as a sustainable cultural organisation, increasing its audiences and its capacity to grow in artform expertise. This all makes for enjoyable festivals on the part of the audiences and the artists who share their work with us through the festival format.
Máire Logue of Listowel Writers’ Week said “the mentoring project is really valuable; it is vitally important to take the time to look inward at ourselves and be evaluated objectively by experts in the arts community. It enabled us to examine our approach to festival programming and look at new and innovative techniques in areas such as marketing, research, sponsorship, finance and programming. We found the entire experience a positive and informative one.”
The project will be formally evaluated in 2018 and it is anticipated that learning outcomes will be shared thereafter.
Creative Mentoring for Festivals is a partnership between Kerry, Cork City and Cork County Local Authorities. Further information from firstname.lastname@example.org