Sky Arts’ Futures Fund Seminar in Dublin

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Sky Arts will host a free workshop in Dublin later this month, the Futures Fund Seminar, and invites young Irish artists to sign up. Participants will learn more about the Sky Arts Ignition: Futures Fund series which has just opened a new round of applications. Special guest Camille O’Sullivan, an award winning performer, will join Sky Arts Channel Director James Hunt to discuss her career, how she established herself as a working artist and offer advice on working in the arts.

Ignition is a major programme launched in 2011 by Sky Arts to support and invest in the arts across the UK and Ireland. As part of Sky Arts Ignition: Futures Fund, designed specifically to help young talent bridge the gap from education to becoming working artists, five artists will each receive a £30,000 (approx €35,000) bursary as well as mentoring support.

Sky Arts received over 850 applications from the UK and Ireland in the first round and has awarded the first two bursaries to 23 year old opera director Daisy Evans and 29 year old visual artist Phoebe Boswell. The shortlisted candidates were invited to pitch their projects to a judging panel which included; radio and Sky Arts presenter Jo Whiley; theatre director and Artistic Director of Headlong Theatre Company, Rupert Goold; Arts Commissioning Editor for The Times, Nancy Durrant; Director of Sky Arts, James Hunt; Director of The Bigger Picture at Sky, Jo Fox; and poet and writer Sabrina Mahfouz.

A second round of applications has now opened to individual artists working in visual art, theatre, performance art, music, film, dance or literature. Applicants must be aged 18-30 on 24 February 2012 and be based in the UK or Ireland, The Sky Arts Futures Fund Seminar will be held in the Science Gallery, Dublin from 2pm – 5pm on 20th December 2011, providing young artists with professional guidance, feedback on the application process and on the criteria for a winning project. The session will also include a drinks reception providing an ideal networking opportunity for the young artists to meet other young creative minds.

James Hunt, Director of Sky Arts comments, “Talent and creativity is thriving in the arts today, but we recognise that people can’t fulfil their potential and pursue their artistic ambitions without support. Sky has long been a big investor in the arts, both on and off screen, but we think it’s vital to uphold that commitment right across the board – individuals who are just starting out are equally as important as organisations with a wealth of experience behind them. This is why we launched Futures Fund as part of Sky Arts Ignition – we’re hoping that we will be able to support and nurture the next generation of Bussells, Kennedys, Emins, and Cumberbatches.”

The fund is run in association with IdeasTap, an arts charity, funding body and network of over 50,000 young creative people at the start of their careers. The scheme will also provide each artist with a mentor from Sky, who will help develop their skills and knowledge in the arts and commercial sector.

Information and advice on how to apply can be found at www.ideastap.com/skyartsfuturesfund together with advice from the judges on what they are looking for in an application.

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