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In 2011 Arts Council England launched The Creative Case for Diversity initiative: a method of engaging the arts and culture sector nationally to reinforce the importance of diversity and equality in the arts and all of its forms to reflect the whole of society. In short, this means that arts organisations and artists actively have a responsibility to grow opportunities for minority and marginalised people in the community.
The Creative Case for Diversity allows and encourages arts organisations and artists to enrich their work by embracing a wide rage of Influences and practices. This is done by exploring new ways of working, using differences to develop, and overcoming challenges with audience development and public engagement.
The Creative Case for Diversity Within Art and Culture has three main components:
A continued drive for equality is imperative to remove barriers in the art world, releasing and realising potential and helping to transform the arts so that they truly reflect the reality of the diverse country that we have become but still do not fully recognise.
There has to be a new conversation that attempts through various means to resituate diverse artists, both historically and theoretically, at the centre of British art – whether that is the performing arts, the visual arts, combined arts, music, literature or film.
A new vision
We need a new framework for viewing diversity – one that takes it out of a negative or ‘deficit’ model and places it in an artistic context. Diversity must become not an optional extra but part of the fabric of our discussions and decisions about how we encourage a resilient, energetic, relevant, fearless and challenging artistic culture in England and the wider world.
As an NPO, the Arena Theatre is expected to demonstrate how we contribute to the Creative Case for Diversity through the work we produce, present and collect. We are very proud of the work we produce in-house which places equality and diversity at the forefront, and this is a belief we champion with the companies we work with. As a theatre, we believe that the arts is for everyone, and we strive for excellence within the work that is programmed.
To find out more about the Creative Case for Diversity please visit the Arts Council England's website.