Arts Talk : The power of partnership

Posted in: by Sally Gorton on 19 August 2016
Tagged with: Just Be Festival, Lancaster, Partnership

Ludus Dance Creative Director, Anthony Briggs, considers the great things we can achieve when we work together. 

Jabadao's The Tig

When the press and social media are saturated, as now, with so much negative information, I like many others can sometimes find it difficult to go about day-to-day activities feeling positive and hopeful. Whilst I would like to think that I am a glass half full kind of person, even I have struggled sometimes to find a strong enough reason to get out of bed in the morning.   

Yet I do believe that amidst the sea of social chaos and loss of faith in what we thought made this country great, we do, as a society, have the ability to work together to face the coming storms.   

What keeps me pushing forward is my belief in the power of the arts to bring people together. Now I am not the only person that shares in this belief and there have been numerous studies done over the last 50 years proving that the arts have the power to make people better - socially, physically, emotionally and psychologically.  

So it is within this context that I would just like to share a small moment with you that will hopefully spread a little cheer. 

Over the past six months I have been working with a number of different partners across Lancaster (arts organisations, nurseries, schools, children's centres and community agencies) to bring a wonderful piece of performance art to the district for local children and their families - Jabadao's the TIG. From my experience of producing work of this kind in the past I was confident that it would be successful. However, what I did not foresee was the sheer generosity and commitment of these partners.

With only a small amount of physical resource, over 500 children aged 0 to 6, along with their family members and support staff, were able to enjoy and benefit from a high quality immersive art experience. 

This article is called 'the power of partnership' for a reason. Yes, the quality of the art had a big part to play and we thank Jabadao for sharing this work with us. However it simply would not have been possible without the sheer determination and strength of the local partnership we forged a that time - and subsequently cemented by producing Lancaster's first JustBe Children's Arts Fesival.

So to anyone left wondering at recent divisions thrown up between friends and neighbours, I would say why not instead think of the partnering possibilities? You could organise a park festival, a street party or community boot sale for charity. All it takes is the belief that people want the best for each other and that anything can happen when we come together towards a shared goal!

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