Edinburgh Festvial Fringe Society - Participant Development Coordinator
The Fringe Society is the organisation that underpins the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the largest arts festival in the world and takes place every August for three weeks in Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital city. In 2014 there were 49,497 performances of 3,193 shows in 299 venues, making it the largest ever arts festival in the world. In 2010, as a part of the Fringe Society's strategic overhaul, I came into post and created the role of Participant Development Coordinator. The mission was to design a department focussed on the creative and professional development of the artists who participate in the Fringe and, in tandem, the services offered to the Arts Industry Professionals who attend the Festival seeking new talent and connections.
My focus was to create and implement a strategy to advise participants on how to tour and develop their shows after the Fringe and to assist them with identifying development opportunities both during and outside the Fringe. I would creatively ‘match-make’ Fringe shows with appropriate arts industry professionals and help companies to construct a strategy to engage the promoter, programmer or presenter that would be interested in their work.
My role was to provide one-to-one advice to participants both in person and at Fringe Society events outside Edinburgh. I produced written how-to guides on touring, funding and professional development and curated professional development workshops during the festival in conjunction with external partners and colleagues.
The Arts Industry Office is the arts professional’s one-stop shop for discovering and booking new work and talent and making connections at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. My role invovled redeveloping the strategy and reach for this service from the ground up. My team and I assisted and nurtured over 1000 of some of the most influentional arts professionals from across the globe. In addition to deisgning and streamling the operational elements of accreditation, I created a programme of networking events and other services which included but wasn't limited to:
A dedicated box office
Dedicated online services
Complimentary ticketing service and information on artists
Louise I designed the programme of professional development events that take place throughout the Festival period at the Fringe Society's participants centre, Fringe Central. These were delivered alongside a diverse range of high profile partners - National Theatre, Cirque du Soleil, British Council, Playwright's Studio Scotland and the BBC to name a few - and encompass everything from seminars on arts funding to playwrighting workshops.