SRUC looks to add another string to its bow

Published: 17 November 2020

SRUC is part of a £3 million research and development programme to explore ideas that could go on to become major UK festivals in 2022.

From nearly 300 submissions, 30 creative teams – one of which includes SRUC – have been selected to take part in the Festival UK 2022 R&D Project. Each has received funding to enable them to develop ideas for their own festival.

SRUC’s Professor Fiona Burnett teamed up with Aproxima Arts, BEMIS Scotland, Celtic Connections, Feis Rois, Getmade Design and the James Hutton Institute in a team linking SRUC’s core science areas in the natural economy with a diverse creative team of musicians, artists and community groups, to design a national festival for Scotland.

The 30 creative teams taking part are made up of 22 UK-wide collaborations, and two each from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Over the next few months, each team will be supported to develop its big idea through a specially designed programme that includes presentations, workshops with the BBC Research & Development team, breakout spaces and opportunities to hear from high-profile speakers representing STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths).

The 30 teams will then pitch their proposals before a panel in February 2021, with ten set to be taken forward as part of the UK-wide Festival, which will take place throughout 2022.

Prof Burnett said: “It’s obviously very early days but we’re thrilled to have made it to this stage. We were judged as a team rather than a concept, so the idea is still to be fully developed, but it will link sustainability, nutrition and culture and promote it to urban, rural and hard-to-reach groups.”

Independently run and led by Chief Creative Officer Martin Green, Festival UK 2022 is backed by the four governments of the UK. A total of £120 million of new investment is coming from the UK Government, including funding to the Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales devolved administrations.

“Festival UK 2022 is already showing us new and exciting opportunities for Scotland’s world-renowned Arts and Technology sectors to work together.

“There are two unique creative teams comprised entirely of Scottish-based individuals and organisations developing their proposals for delivery in Scotland during 2022, as well as a wide range of others in Scotland who will be key partners in other creative teams developing proposals for delivery across the UK. We can be sure that all of them are outstanding examples of Scotland’s creativity and innovation.

Fiona Hyslop, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work and Culture




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