Spot On Lancashire’s Company Manager Lyndsey Wilson talks to Big Imaginations about Spot On Lancashire, working with local volunteers and non-traditional venues, and the benefits that come with being a member of the Big Imaginations network
Spot On currently offers a curated menu of professional theatre to 48 rural venues and 58 libraries across Lancashire. The network is made up of volunteer promoters and library staff who all dedicate their time and resources for free for the good of the cultural landscape in their local community.
Our volunteer promoters are passionate about their role, with a wealth of experience in hosting performances, but a majority of the time they are looking to us to offer them new experiences and to seek out something very different to their other events. Our audiences are hyper-local and, for some, that one Spot On show per season is the only cultural activity they participate in.
Sourcing and selecting work which will suit the varying needs and wants of such a diverse group is no mean feat but it’s one which we relish. Finding children’s work which will appeal to these venues is also a really interesting challenge. We’re not just looking for quality work at a reasonable fee, we’re also taking into consideration how tall a set is, how many cast members are involved and how many plug sockets the company might want to use!
Our work with Big Imaginations has helped to increase the variety of children’s work available, with full confidence that the work will be of a consistently high standard from trusted companies. Often, we wouldn’t be able to afford to bring those companies to Lancashire for just a handful of dates, so being able to block book as part of a larger tour is invaluable.
The chance to work within the Big Imaginations network on commissions and artist development projects has seen our spaces host scratch performances and artist residencies, welcoming international performers and nurturing homegrown talent – it’s an exciting adventure for all of our spaces.