If you happen to be at the Fringe today (Monday 19 August) I will be giving a talk about the campaign so far and introducing the Survey Monkey voting system from 3-4pm as part of a Writers' Guild event at Fringe Central. Tickets are free but you do need to book ahead. If you find it is sold out, but fancy finding me for a chat earlier in the day, I will also be manning the Writers' Guild stall at the Fringe Fair, on and off from 11am-2.30pm today.
But if you can't make either, then fear not. It is the 21st century after all. The main part of today is to launch a voting process which takes place online.
Phase One of the In Battalions Delphi study took place from 23 May to 24 June this year, and solicited answers in response to a research question from a variety of theatre-makers.
Our question was:
"In what ways can theatres, theatre-makers and the Arts Council work together to protect risk-taking on new work and new talent, without creating significant extra expense?"
We received 36 ideas in response to this question - many of them hugely imaginative and exciting.
Phase Two involves as many of us as possible now voting on them. You can do that here. (Please be sure to read the explanatory notes in the Introduction beforehand.)
You don't have to have submitted an idea for the longlist to be able to take part in the voting (though you do need to have some professional experience in developing new work for the stage).
I would give an overview of some of the brilliant ideas which we have received, but I am told that to do so would prejudice the study, so I can't. But they're all there for anyone to read. If you're interested you can go and take a look, you don't have to take part in the voting itself.
However, if you do want to vote, please note that the deadline is one month from today, Friday 20 September.
Please do pass this on and invite other theatre professionals to take part. The more who do so, the greater weight our study will have.
Once the results are in, Helen and I will collate the points and accompanying comments, and pull them all together into a new report, a sort of follow-up to In Battalions which aims to suggest some solutions to the problems described in the original. The process is designed to create a high-scoring shortlist of proposals which the 'experts' who have taken part (that's you) all agree are of value and worth some of us pursuing. We hope to have this ready some time around the end of October or start of November.
After that ... it's over to you! I'm just the ideas man. I need the rest of you to put them into action.
Thank you once again for your ongoing support.
Click here to take survey.