Leicester arts centre secures diverse leadership funding

Posted by ap507 at Oct 13, 2016 12:41 PM |
Arts Council England is investing £100,000 to support the University of Leicester’s Attenborough Arts Centre

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 13 October 2016 

Images available here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/k2mc0w26867cvx1/AABZqKxb43PF0A4pC1o0vHu5a?dl=0

Arts Council England is investing £100,000 to support the University of Leicester’s Attenborough Arts Centre to host a training placement for artist and producer Gurdeep Sian with a bursary.     

The funding comes from the Arts Council’s Change Makers programme which is aimed at increasing the diversity of senior leaders within England’s arts and cultural sector.

The University’s Attenborough Arts Centre is one of 20 organisations nationally to receive a share of £2.57 million from the programme.

This major investment will support disabled and Black and Minority Ethnic leaders from across the country to gain the relevant experience, knowledge skills and confidence needed to compete for Artistic Director, Chief Executive or other senior leadership positions in the future. 

Peter Knott, Area Director, Arts Council England, said: “The Arts Council is committed to ensuring the diversity of England is reflected within the arts and cultural sector, from its senior leaders to the artistic work being produced for people to enjoy. Gurdeep is a creative force in Leicester’s arts scene and it will be great to see our Change Makers programme supporting him to realise his leadership potential with the support of Michaela and her team at Attenborough Arts Centre. We hope the placement will help him to take the next step in his career, helping to shape the future of our sector.”

Born in Leicester to working class South Asian Sikh parents, Gurdeep is a rising-star in the city’s arts and cultural scene. He is an artist and independent creative producer best known for his role as the Creative Director for the annual An Indian Summer festival.

Under the mentorship of Attenborough Arts Centre’s Director Michaela Butter MBE, this will be Gurdeep’s first senior leadership role within a building-based arts venue.

As part of the training placement he will be taking the lead on the production of a new Leicester edition of De-Stress Fest, focusing on body-image, mental health and stress-alleviation.

Gurdeep Sian said: “Art is my lifelong commitment - I was born into a working class South Asian migrant family and our communities don't consider Art as a viable prospect. I intend to use my opportunity as a Change Maker to set an example for unheard voices and to raise the value of the voice of Art. Our project - the DeStress Fest - is situated in health and well-being, yet it also posits that the Arts entire are a vital function in the health and well-being of society, and always have been.”

Michael Attenborough CBE, Patron of Attenborough Arts Centre, said: “This is thrilling news for Attenborough Arts Centre. It vindicates everything that Michaela Butter and her dedicated team are working so hard for. Namely that the Attenborough Arts Centre should have a direct and evident impact on the community that it serves. The arts are the perfect vehicle to tackle the huge issue of mental health. Art addresses the invisible part of the National Health - our emotional, psychological and spiritual selves. As each day goes by, it becomes ever clearer that mental health is one of the burning issues of our day. So it fills me with immense pride that the Attenborough Arts Centre is to play such a key role in exploring and supporting such urgently needed work in this vital field.”


Notes to Editors:

The University of Leicester’s Attenborough Arts Centre prides itself on being accessible and inclusive. With over 19 years of experience, our programme offers courses and workshops, contemporary art exhibitions, performance and live art, theatre and comedy, live music and jazz, dance, activities for children and families, and more. We are proud to champion emerging talent and disability-led artists, supporting those starting their careers. Our outstanding access and inclusive work has been recognised, through multiple awards and grants from Arts Council England, BBC Children in Need, Leicester Shire Promotions and Paul Hamlyn Foundation. Our audience has grown to 86,000 people over the last year. www.attenborougharts.com

Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives. We support a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections. Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. In short, it makes life better. Between 2015 and 2018, we plan to invest £1.1 billion of public money from government and an estimated £700 million from the National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country. www.artscouncil.org.uk

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