Brighton Fringe Ltd

Brighton Fringe Ltd is an organisation that supports artists, producers and audiences. The Brighton Fringe office provides a platform and a range of marketing tools to promote participating events. Brighton Fringe, the festival, is the largest open access arts festival in England and one of the largest fringe festivals in the world. It sets out to stimulate, educate and entertain a wide audience by providing a showcase for diverse art forms. It takes place every May and for the second time, it is a 4-week festival in 2014 (3 May – 1 June) to include the summer half-term week. Brighton Fringe has grown out of and is inspired by home-grown creativity: more than 50% of events are put on by artistic companies based in Brighton & Hove. In 2013, it had 734 individual events, 176 free events, 3654 performances at 185 venues. It is also a completely open access festival, which means anyone can put on an event and be included in the brochure and website listings on payment of a fee. By definition, Brighton Fringe can include any art form. No artistic judgment or selection criteria are imposed on participants, enabling the development of both new and established work to attract fresh audiences, press and promoters. Emerging young artists, producers, venue managers, cultural agencies, youth organisations (Brighton Youth Centre). Brighton Fringe acts as an umbrella organisation. It does not discriminate against age, but consults all artists, regardless of age. Brighton Fringe works closely with Brighton Youth Centre and Brighton & Hove Council's Express Network to make sure that Youth-led activities are a continued and valued part of the Brighton Fringe programme. Brighton Fringe also works closely with venue managers of Brighton & Hove. Venue managers have recently announced a scheme to form Youth Councils, which will run a youth-led programme during Brighton Fringe 2014. This means that young people will get the chance to programme shows and events in certain venues, as part of the festival programme. Brighton Fringe will work closely with venues to facilitate this process and make sure that schools and youth groups are involved and consulted as much as possible in this process. Brighton Fringe, as a charity, has the responsibility to be transparent in all of its actions and processes. Every participant that is involved in Brighton Fringe are supported by Participant Services, the department that oversees the programme. The department is responsible for making sure that all participants' career goals and expectations are understood and realistically met. Young volunteers are given a welcome pack, policy and volunteer guidelines. This outlines the responsibilities of the organisation to each volunteer and encourages them to feedback on their placement. There is also opportunity to discuss queries any time with senior management, in a confidential manner. Brighton Fringe Ltd consists of a small (4 full-time and 2 part-time year-round plus up to 10 further freelance, seasonal staff), professional and very friendly team. The organisation is governed by a skills-based Board of Trustees, including experts from the arts, education, PR and charities, who work closely together with staff. Our core values are: We believe in equality and respect for all. We are transparent, honest and trustworthy. We are friendly and professional. We are open and responsive. We enjoy what we do. Brighton Fringe has a track record of providing opportunities to young people to shape the future of the festival, including becoming part of volunteers and employees shows that Brighton Fringe creates a welcoming, friendly atmosphere within and even beyond the office. Brighton Fringe does not award formal qualifications, but is committed to developing award schemes for participants of Brighton Fringe, in partnership with other reputable organisations. One example of this is the NWS award for Best Play. Brighton Fringe works with New Writing South, the preeminent creative writing organisation for writers and agencies in the South East. Participants of the festival are asked to send in an original piece of scripted work. The award is presented to one playwright in recognition of an outstanding new play, premiered at Brighton Fringe. It is designed to attract new plays to Brighton and encourage good quality, original pieces to Brighton Fringe. The award has been running for four years. Brighton Fringe does support organisations that give out formal qualifications. For example, Brighton Youth Centre, who are an 'Arts Award Bridge' organisation. The Youth Centre supports young people across the UK to develop as artists and arts leaders. Volunteers that work within the Brighton Fringe organisation are provided with extensive training and are encouraged to develop new skills and critical thinking. All volunteers' ambitions are identified during recruitment, these are revisited during the placement and evaluated at the end of their work. The Participant Services department work throughout the year to nurture fringe artists and producers in the city and beyond. They deliver one-to-one advice surgeries, practical workshops and are available on email, in person, social media and on the telephone from Monday - Friday (seven days a week during the festival). The organisation connects local artists and organisations to promote work, develop professionally and to meet other artists, promoters, venues and businesses. It also works closely with festivals world-wide and international networks (e.g. World Festival Network and World Fringe Alliance) to support fringe productions in touring, fundraising and professional development. Brighton Fringe reaches a significant and influential audience throughout the year through a combination of print and digital marketing as well as a year-round communications strategy. 2013 audience figures: - 270,000 attnedances to the festival in May - 17,000 Twitter followers - 2,500 Facebook followers (with around 90,000 reach in the first week of May) - Dedicated 'Brighton Fringe Participants' Facebook page - 30,000+ email database (weekly-monthly e-newsletters, depending on time of year) - National media partnership with the i newspaper - Over 3,000 pieces of media coverage (print, online, broadcast) Brighton Fringe's content calendar of messages includes promoting and celebrating achievements of participants and their events. Anyone can participate in Brighton Fringe, this means that young people taking part in the festival are able to take on leadership roles and produce events without any consultation to others. Brighton Fringe employs up to 50 volunters in the lead up to, and during the festival. The positions given are important roles supporting and working directly with the management team. Volunteers are trained on specific areas and are put in charge of tasks such as social media, venue management, stage management and artist liaison. Many of the core team began work as volunteers and have remained in touch with the organisation. Some of these young volunteers are now in full-time management roles within the organisation.
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