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Lighthouse, Poole’s centre for the arts, has announced a new Academy to train the arts industry professionals of the future and is recruiting its first Creative Engagement Manager. 

The new role will oversee the organisation’s Creative Engagement activity, supporting and enabling artists, and extending the delivery of its already busy programme of education, training and participation. 

“Lighthouse hosts an incredibly diverse and far-reaching performance programme across all our venues, but above and beyond that, what sets the organisation apart is the additional opportunities we offer to the local and wider community,” explains Head of Programming Tim Colegate.  

“Lighthouse Academy will grow what we already do by developing our introductory Young Technicians and Young Writers courses to the next level and creating new courses such as Young Producers. In this way we intend to establish Lighthouse as a centre of excellence with clear career paths for young people who want to work in this industry.” 

Two graduates of Lighthouse Young Technicians course have since been employed by the organisation and last year BBC Radio 4 broadcast a play commissioned from Lighthouse Young Writers graduate Eve Wright, who was subsequently awarded a grant under the Amazon Literary Partnership. 

“We are very proud of all our graduates and continue to be struck by the talent and ambition of the young people that participate. The role of Creative Engagement Manager will be instrumental in the part Lighthouse plays going forward as a nationally significant and locally loved cultural organisation as we extend our artistic development work and strive to secure accreditation for our training courses from recognised education providers.” 

In the coming weeks Lighthouse is to announce the return of its SANCTUARY artistic residency with a call out to emerging, developing and established artists and companies with work to develop. 

“Lighthouse has bounced back strongly since the final Covid restrictions with our busiest ever season,” adds Tim. “The receipts from that will be invested in extending this year’s SANCTUARY intake further increasing our engagement with artists from all backgrounds and communities.” 

Future plans include the first Dorset Artists Festival in May and the return of the Lighthouse Playwriting Prize after this year’s winner – St Ives by DA Nixon – was staged as a rehearsed reading with professional cast and director in the venue’s Sherling Studio. 

(NC)

Published 17 March 2022