Creative bursaries and arts management program


While taking up a career in arts may be justified as a ‘calling’, there is more to it in order to become successful, skillful and known-enough for work to keep pouring in even if at irregular intervals or even to establish oneself as a freelancer.

This Guardian article is a first person account of Shakera Ahad, a theatre artist who says that a creative bursary was the most important thing to get her artistic career moving and helped her ‘get it’. Through this, she got access to Kneehigh, a theatre company, where her mentor taught her importance of sustainability, staying realistic and understanding there is never just one big break.

She taught me how to manage myself as a business, how to generate work in the future – everything I lacked before. Helen (her mentor)’got it’ and passed on to me a quiet self-confidence that, dare I say, hinted a little of self-entitlement. It opened up a world to me.”

Hereon, Ahad then took upto another big theatre group and today works as a freelancer and believes that she has ‘got it’. Emphasizing the increasing need for creative bursaries, she says-

Our bursaries provided access to an industry closed to the average low income working class individual. Now part of that industry, we hold the memory of why such schemes exist and are living proof that they work…This is about creating accessibility in the arts now and in the future.

Menger states that an artist’s earning depend not only on the skills but also entrepreneurial and management functions. In our class discussions too, we frequently discuss the need to bridge the gap between MBA and art schools.

In this context, I find this news article relevant. The first line of the article is particularly interesting – “Responding to calls directly from industry, Rouen Business School has created a new Masters degree dedicated entirely to management in the arts field.”

The degree will be called MSc in Arts Management and will be introduced next year in October 2013 and will look to address current economic and managerial issues facing organizations operating in the arts industry.

Article 1:

Article 2:



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