Engaging Stages – a new book on audience development published

A European network of performing arts organisations shares its audience-centric approach in a new book

Engaging Stages is a new, hands-on guide for theatre-makers and creative leaders to inform and inspire strategic approaches to public engagement. Published by the Theatron Engaging Stages Network Europe, it contains 30 contributions and case studies from 17 leading performing arts organisations in 10 European countries, including Toneelhuis Antwerp (BE), HELLERAU European Center for the Arts Dresden (DE), TR Warszawa (PL), Det Norske Teatret (NO), Bunker (SI), the European Commission and Clore Leadership Programme. UK contributors include the Young Vic, Sadler’s Wells and National Theatre Wales.

The book is the result of experiences gained within the European collaboration project ‘Theatron – Engaging New Audiences’. Co-funded by the EU Culture Programme, the project brought together 12 major European houses to explore creative ways of engaging new audiences – and the insights are now gathered and published together for the first time. Engaging Stages, presents and analyses the initiatives and research undertaken by European theatres, festivals and cultural organisations, covering a variety of approaches to audience development including:

  • Being a public theatre in public service

  • Creating citizen stages / Bürgerbühne

  • Connecting to audiences on and off stage

  • Working with marginalised groups, including immigrants and refugees

  • Engaging with young audiences and schools

  • Creating socially-engaged work

  • Using digital platforms

  • Conducting audience research

  • Moving towards audience-focused creative leadership

More information is available on the Engaging Stages website; the book is widely available from all major online retailers.