Published 7 Mar 2018 by Theatre Forum
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Lead Role workshop
Unlocking women artists’ potential

Where’s your career as an artist going? You have no spare time and very little money to make it happen. So how do you get to where you want to be? 

This new Lead Role workshop is tailored to the career development needs of women artists. It’s a practical three-day course designed to give you the tools to help convince yourself and the rest of the world that you are unique and your work is amazing. This is your chance to learn how to use your best tool, namely yourself, to positively impact on your career and others. It’s about taking a lead role in managing your own career and realising your potential.

Arranged by Kultur i Väst, Region Västra Götaland in Sweden in collaboration with Theatre Forum in Ireland, the Lead Role workshop is led by Heather Maitland from England and Erna Sundqvist from Sweden, both well-known experts in cultural communications, leadership and gender equality. A tried and tested concept, a pilot workshop was developed in Sweden in the last two years. Now this unique-format workshop has been evolved and adapted to the needs of professional women artists in Sweden and Ireland.

Who is it for?
Professional women artists working in theatre, dance, and music.

What will Lead Role participants get?
After participating in this workshop, you will be much more aware of how you, as your own person and an artist, should act to achieve your goals and potential.

- Practical, sensible and realistic ways to talk about you and your work
- Develop greater self-awareness
- Leadership to change how you work to achieve your goals
- Strategies to build your resilience
- Audience development approaches to get more bookings and bigger audience
- Greater understanding of what audiences and promoters are looking for and how you might best respond
- Build relationships with Swedish and Irish artists and promoters.

Participants in the Swedish pilot workshop describe its many benefits:

“Incredibly rewarding course that I really needed. It feels that it will change and transform my whole career. I was totally high afterwards.”

“Well organized, food for thought and useful information and content. Inspiring and fun to meet all the different participants and their experiences.”

“The best with the course was that it was tailor-made for our needs. That you could get concrete tips and direct help with various problems.”

“That I got the opportunity to reflect on my own artistry, what its specificity is and how I can convey this to an audience or to an organiser.”
 “It was concrete. And as usual – meet colleagues and work and talk.”

“This course took us cultural workers seriously and had as a goal to raise our efficiency.”

“Really very useful information.”
“The course was well adapted for us a target group and directly applicable on my activity. It also opened my eyes round many things.”
“It was also very nice that it was only women participating.”
“It is a unique course, I have not heard of any similar outline! It definitely exceeded my expectations!”

More about Heather Maitland
Heather Maitland works internationally as an arts consultant with a focus on strategic marketing, communications and audience development. She is a prominent figure in the realm of audience research and development and a member of the team that pioneered this training concept.

More about Erna Sundqvist
Erna Sundqvist is from Sweden and she is a management development consultant with a gender equality perspective. She has a long-standing experience working as a consultant, including devising leadership programmes. As a sociologist, she is conscious of power structures and their influence on decisions and actions, important starting points in her tutoring.

More about Kultur i Väst
Kultur i Väst is the Västra Götaland's regional cultural administration organisation in West Sweden. Kultur i Väst works in many partnerships to create the conditions that ensure a strong and developed cultural landscape by supporting venues, artists and their practices, developing capacity, knowledge and skills.

More about Kultur i Väst

More about Theatre Forum
Theatre Forum is a membership organisation for Ireland’s professional performing arts community, supporting, developing and providing resources to members to raise standards in the performing arts. Working alongside members and partners to strengthen the community, the organisation’s purpose is to advance its interests and to ensure the community’s sustainable future.

More about Theatre Forum.  

About the 2018 Lead Role workshop
The Lead Role 2018 workshop is presented by Kultur i Väst in partnership with Theatre Forum.

It’s a residential workshop and will take place at Ljungskile Folk High School, an arts conference centre in the small coastal town Ljungskile, approximately an hour northwest of Göteborg, or Gothenberg. More about Ljungskile Folk High School

Workshop dates
The 2018 Lead Role workshop will start on Monday, 21 May and run to Friday, 25 May with the first and last days being travel ones. Workshop participants will be required to ensure that they have a valid passport, are willing to travel in a group, attend all sessions as well as some evening events.

21 May: Travel to Sweden, arrive at Ljungskile Folk High School late pm
22 May: Full day and evening programme
23 May: Full day and evening programme
24 May: Full day and evening programme
25 May: Departing Ljungskile Folk High School after breakfast and travel to Ireland.

The workshop registration fee is €60, approximately 600 SEK Sweden Krona, which you will be asked to pay if you’re offered a workshop place. There are no other accommodation or meal charges for participants. All the workshop costs as well as accommodation and meals when in Sweden will be paid by Kultur i Väst.

Travel and transfers
Successful applicants based in Ireland will be directed to apply for an Arts Council Travel and Training (outbound) award at least four weeks in advance of the 21 May departure date to cover the cost of transfers flights to and from Sweden. Transfers between Göteborg and Ljungskile will be arranged for the group of Irish artists.

Application to participate in the 2018 Lead Role workshop is by online application

8 March           Applications open.
22 March         Applications close and late applications not accepted.
26 March         Places will be offered to the successful applicants.


Criteria for selecting programme artists

The workshop has been designed for professional women artists working in theatre, dance and music. The number of Lead Role women artists from Ireland is limited to six. A panel of three people, comprised of representatives of both organisations managing the programme as well as independent facilitator, will select participants based on the following criteria:

- Applicant’s artistic output to date
- Artistic ethos and ambition of the artist to develop their own career
- Benefits that participating in the Lead Role programme would offer the artist
- The group dynamic.

Any questions
Email any questions to info(at) or call Anna or Irma +353 (0)1 6778779.

Theatre Forum CLG Festival House 12 Essex Street East Dublin 2, D02 EH42 Ireland.

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